Friday, May 3, 2013

Diet Variety: Ramps

Sometimes there are seasonal greens and things I want to try, but I hesitate to put them on my grocery list because I'm not sure if the store or Farmer's Market will be carrying them. If I put a recipe on my menu and the main ingredient isn't available, it is often difficult to re-orgranize mid-grocery trip, since all of the meals are blended together on the grocery list. Especially when my mental capacity is taken over by school and graduation, I don't want to add any stress of unknown ingredient availability (this is what has stopped me from making spring rolls... does Whole Foods have rice paper wrappers?).

I wish stores would post on their websites when they are carrying a seasonal ingredient. I know our Co-op puts this info on their Facebook page, but we almost never get the bulk of our groceries there.

Anyway, on to the topic of this post: ramps. I've heard about ramps, but they are one of THOSE seasonal things. I saw a great looking recipe for a ramp pizza on Smitten Kitchen and did not save the recipe, but kept it in my mind when we went grocery shopping. As luck would have it, last week was super busy and I had not yet made a grocery list when we went to the Farmer's Market. While this would be impossible at the grocery store, there are so few things at the Farmer's Market right now that we could grab what we wanted, limited by the amount of cash we had.

Given the scarcity of food beyond cheese, bread, and cookies at the Farmer's Market in April, I was very happy to see that one of my favorite vendors had ramps. I grabbed a bunch and planned to make the pizza (Ramp Pizza from Smitten Kitchen). I have never cooked with ramps before and maybe have never had them (unless it was at a fancy restaurant).

I was excited to make this pizza sans mozzarella. I love pizza with only a little cheese, and the pecorino romano is just enough cheesy-ness to satisfy without being greasy. Plus, fresh mozzarella is expensive and the pre-shredded stuff has cardboard and weird stuff in it to keep it from sticking together (don't buy it! unless you like to eat cardboard). AND less cheese means you can eat more of the pizza because it has a lot less calories.

Couldn't wait to take a bite!
So what was the verdict? This pizza was pretty amazing (ok I added a little too many red pepper flakes but it was a nice sinus clearing experience). We couldn't get enough of it and plan to make it again if we are lucky enough to find ramps at the Farmer's Market this Saturday. The cheese and pre-made dough were pricey, but we have enough left for another batch. Plus, the sauce was amazingly easy and delicious.

If you can't find ramps, try the suggestions for green onions or leeks. I think the combo of sauce/salty cheese/and green veggie would be great even without the ramps.

Another successful week of trying something new! This week we'll be trying to get ramps again and buying some romaine lettuce. I know, romaine lettuce is not exciting, but it is something we rarely purchase or eat and its good for you!

Gotta go, the one leftover slice of pizza is calling my name.

No comments:

Post a Comment