Ramps, the wild leeks of the woods are in season here up north and many farmers are harvesting them to sell to co-ops, restaurants, at farmers markets, and including them in early CSA boxes.
Many specialty food stores are selling them for over $10 per pound! They are wonderful tasting and easy to harvest. When they are young you can eat the leaves as well as the shoots (just like a scallion).
The ones in the picture to the right we got this morning while we were morel hunting.
At this time of the year they are tender and sweet. when they get older the bottom part can be chopped up and used like a leek or a green onion in all sorts of wonderful dishes.
We actually pickle these bottom parts of the older ones, and eat them all year. They’re great on a cracker, in a salad, or just on their own.
Some people worry that the value of these wild delicacies are causing them to be over-harvested in many places. I’ve not seen evidence of this myself, but try to leave parts of every patch I find so they will come up the next year.
Look for them in the understory in older woodlands where hardwood trees grow.
Ramps, are well worth the time they take to find, harvest, clean, and even pickle.