|Ramp Colony growing in hardwood swamp|
Prior to Morels popping through the ground, another forest plant gets a head start. I first noticed these plants during early spring turkey hunts, where the scent of garlic and onion would waif through the air after walking through a patch of them.
|Harvesting Ramps or Wild Leeks|
Ramps, also known as Wild Leeks, are a wild onion native to North America. Its bright green leaves are some of the first color to carpet the forest floor, a stark contrast to the brown of the previous fall.
The bulbs of these flavorful plants resemble a scallion and the flavor, although similar to onion, is usually of strong garlic. I’ve used them in different dishes, just as you would onion. The green leaves also can be used and have a similar flavor, but not quite as strong.
When Ramp hunting and harvesting, be aware that they grow in colonies and you should only harvest a small portion in each group. They are easy to clean-cut off the roots, wash and cut to whatever size you like. I freeze them whole for later use in dishes. This “spring,” Ramp it up and enjoy another small savory plant from our outdoors!
|Prepared Ramps and some refreshing Oscars Chocolate Oatmeal Stout-great foraging day!|