Spring Ramp Pesto

Recipe and photos by Raisa Aziz, EdibleDC contributor

RampPestoJar
RampPestoJar

Spring is here! The market is filled with greens and pinks and light yellows. I can smell lilac and a hint of spring onions as I walk through the stalls. It's pretty joyous after months of bundling up and eating root vegetables at every meal.

It's also time for ramps. Somewhere between a leek and spring garlic, ramps have a fairly short season and are usually hand foraged, so it's best to enjoy them while you can. Ramps have a unique strong oniony garlicky flavor making them an excellent base for pesto.

RampFarmersMkt
RampFarmersMkt

My recipe for ramp pesto is light on the garlic and heavier on the lemon, perfect for a perfect spring pasta or on a pizza or flatbread. Pesto can also be frozen, so it's a great way to save the flavor of ramp season for later.

RampPestoIngredients
RampPestoIngredients

Spring Ramp Pesto

One bunch ramps, loosely chopped (about 2 cups)

1/2 cup unsalted cashews 1/2 cup pine nuts 1/4 cup parmesan cheese 1/4 cup olive oil 1/2 lemon, squeezed 1 clove garlic Salt and pepper, to taste

Toast nuts in a saucepan on medium heat, moving frequently, for about 2-4 minutes until lightly golden. Set aside. Place nuts, olive oil, cheese, ramps, lemon juice and garlic into a food processor. Pulse in bursts until smooth. You may need to use a spatula to move the mixture around a few times so there are no big chunks in your pesto. Add salt and pepper to taste and pulse once more. Spoon pesto into a jar with a tight lid. Add a thin layer of olive oil to the top to prevent browning. Refrigerate and use within a week. You can also freeze the pesto in an air-tight container.

Raisa
Raisa

Raisa Aziz (@raisaaziz) is a food stylist, photographer and writer in the DC area. When not cooking, baking or eating, you can find her bopping about town in search of local adventures.