Tis the season for ramps! While some people think these wild leeks are overrated, I think they deserve every bit of their hype. They are a harbinger of spring – and a delicious one at that. Grubstreet chronicles their history here.
A few notes: 1. You can grate the potatoes if you don’t feel like dicing them, or you can use this method; 2. The eggs are completely optional, as is the bacon. Remove both – along with the butter – to make this dish vegan, or just leave out the bacon to go vegetarian. 3. Only trim the very end of the ramps – the stems are edible and tasty. 4. This serves four; reduce the quantities proportionately to feed fewer people.
Ramps go quick – get them from the farmer’s market while you can. Happy spring!
8 ounces oven roasted bacon, crumbled
2 pounds potatoes, scrubbed and cut into a small dice (use yellow or brown skinned potatoes)
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1 red pepper, cored, seeded and diced
1 small red onion, diced
1/4 pound ramps, carefully cleaned, trimmed and roughly chopped
4 eggs (optional)
Salt and pepper to taste
2 tablespoons chives, minced
Grated Parmesan for garnish (optional)
Butter and canola oil for cooking
1. Set heat to medium-high and drizzle canola oil in a large, heavy pan (I used a grill pan). Melt a knob of butter then add the potatoes, onion, pepper and garlic. Season with salt and pepper. Make sure not to crowd the veggies.
2. Cook – turning occasionally – until vegetables are nicely browned, about 15 to 20 minutes.
3. Add in the ramps and cook for another minute or so; season to taste.
4. Over medium heat, melt a tablespoon of butter in a largish pan. When butter is foaming, crack eggs into the pan and fry til whites are set and yolks are still soft and runny – covering the eggs will speed up this process and ensure they don’t burn.
5. Dish the hash into shallow bowls then gently lay eggs on top. Garnish with chives and parmesan.