Chinese Takeout Style Ramp Pancakes

Not a breakfast pancake, more like a scallion or sesame pancakes.  (For me, those are a must on all chinese take out orders.)  These are made with ramps.

Oh, ramps.  Would I go as crazy for them if they're availability was longer than 2 weeks?  Possibly not.  Every year we pick up a bundle or two at the farmers market and then the question is: What are we going to make with the ramps?  Last year it was pasta.  This year, it's pancakes!  

Ramps, if you're unfamiliar, have a garlic and onion flavor with purple tinged whites and long delicate leaves.  All parts are edible.  If you can't find ramps, use leeks or scallions.  No problem.

Chinese Takeout Style Ramp Pancakes

1 1/2 cup all purpose flour, plus more for kneading

1 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup almost hot water

6 ramps, greens only, chopped  (you can use the whites but the taste will be strong)

sesame oil

high heat oil, grapeseed, peanut....

soy sauce

Combine flour, salt and warm water in a bowl.  It will be shaggy.  Work with your hands, kneading for 5 minutes or so until smooth.  Oil a small bowl with sesame oil,place dough in bowl, turn to coat, cover with plastic wrap or damp towel to rest.  Let rest 30 minutes.  Turn dough out onto lightly floured surface, Cut into 8 pieces.  Roll each piece out into a 6 inch round, brush with sesame oil and sprinkle lightly with chopped ramps.  Roll up into a tube and curl around into a pinwheel.  (Imagine your winding your hair up into a bun.)  Flatten bun out with rolling pin about 6 inches across.  

Heat 1/4 inch high heat oil in a small skillet over high heat.  Once hot, add a flattened dough round, cook 20 seconds, or until golden brown, on each side.  Transfer to paper towel and brush with soy sauce.  Finish with remaining dough rounds.  Serve with sauce of soy, lime juice and a dash of sesame oil.  



I had ramps for the first time this weekend and can't believe how delicious they are.   

Ramps are a wild leek that are found mostly on the east coast.  They have a very short season of a joyous two weeks and are one of the first spring vegetables to show up at farmers markets.  They taste like a delicate garlicky onion.  The whole ramp is edible, minus the roots.  

Serves 2. 

Springtime Ramp Pasta

4-5 oz dried linguini

10 fava bean pods

1 oz morel mushrooms, brushed clean and halved

2 tablespoons water

olive oil

1/4 teaspoon red chile flakes

1 bunch ramps (about 9) 

juice of half a lemon


grated pecorino cheese, for serving

Cook pasta, drain and rinse.  Set aside. 

Fava beans have to be shelled twice.  First, remove outer pod, blanch beans for 60 seconds, drain and remove thin shell.  Discard shells and set clean, blanched beans aside. 

Clean ramps and remove roots.  Cut stem just under the leaves.  Set leaves aside.  Slice bulbs/stem in half lengthwise.  Set aside. 

In a pan, heat a teaspoon of olive oil.  Add morels, cook about 30 seconds and carefully add 2 tablespoon of water.  (Water will hiss and splash a bit.)  Cook until morels are soft and water has been absorbed.  Push morels to on side of pan and on the other side, heat a splash of olive oil and red pepper flakes.  Add ramp stem/bulbs, combine with morels and cook about 1 minute.  

Add fava beans and ramp leaves.  Cook until leaves wilt.  Add pasta, cook until hot.  Season with salt, pepper and lemon juice.  

Serve with a grating of pecorino cheese.