This past weekend, Ramp Fest 2015 happened in Hudson, NY. You might be asking yourself, what the heck is a ramp, and why does it warrant its' own festival? Allow me to explain...
Ramps are wild leeks that look like green onions, but are very pungent to the nose with a garlicky taste. In case my "amazing" description hasn't won you over, let me express that they are delicious. Ramps are typically the first vegetables to break through the soil in the Spring and only grow in certain regions of the country (like the Hudson Valley in New York), for a very brief period of time. Isn't all of the above reason enough to celebrate?
Ramp Fest, which took place at the gorgeous Basilica Hudson did not disappoint. Over 20 top chefs from the area created unbelievable dishes using ramps in ways my tiny brain cannot compute. For instance:
- Chef Hugh Horner of Club Helsinki — Ramp and Crackling Buttermilk Cornbread with Dirty South Comeback Sauce.
- Chef Jeff Gimmel of Swoon — Ramp Tator Tots with Ramp Aioli.
- Chef Marc Proper of Miss Lucy's Kitchen — Ramp Jalepeno Margarita.
- Chef Zak Pelaccio of Fish & Game — Allium Boullion with Ramps and Fish Dumplings.
...I can go on, but you get the point. It was amazing.
If you're interested and able to pick up some local ramps of your own, I've linked to some delicious recipes below for inspiration for your own ramp-ified dish.