Monday, May 2, 2011

Buttermilk Ramp Biscuits

Ramp and Buttermilk Biscuits

It's that time of year. The time of year where I attempt to overdose on all variety of spring delicacies - ramps, fiddleheads, morels. If it's possible to get tired of eating them during their very brief season, then I don't know it. 

If I can't get out to one of the few farmer's markets open around here this early in the spring, Whole Foods usually helps me get my fix of the good stuff. I'm there every other day grabbing what I can. I seem to know the number code for ramps better than the cashiers do. Yes, I have a  problem. A delicious, delicious problem.

Of course if you don't live anywhere near where ramps grow, you probably have no idea what the hell I'm talking about. Ramps are wild leeks that are native to the Appalachian Mountain area. They're intensely oniony and garlicky, and in the spring you can eat everything from the green leaves, to the stem, and all the way down to the bulb. Most importantly, they're one of the first yummy green things to pop out of the ground after a long winter!

These biscuits are a great way to enjoy ramps in a number of different ways. They're perfect warm with just a pad of butter, but would make a great crunchy, garlicky roll for a nice sandwich! I also imagine they would store well in the freezer so you could enjoy them long after their season is over. And if you can't get ramps, you could substitute scallions and still have a very yummy biscuit!

Ramp and Buttermilk Biscuits

Buttermilk Ramp Biscuits
(adapted from Bon Appetit)

1/2 cup buttermilk
3/4 cup thinly sliced ramps (bulbs, stems, and leaves)
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
2 tsp baking powder
3/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp ground black pepper
1/3 cup finely grated parmigiano reggiano, plus more for sprinkling on top
6 tablespoons chilled unsalted butter, cut into pieces
1 large egg, beaten
1/2 tsp coriander seeds, cracked


1. Preheat oven to 425F. Combine the ramps and buttermilk in a small bowl. 

2. Combine the flour, baking powder, salt, pepper and cheese in the bowl of a food processor (or you can just do it by hand.) Add the butter to the processor and use on/off bursts to cut the butter into the flour until a coarse meal forms. Transfer the flour and butter mixture to a medium bowl. Add the buttermilk mixture and stir until the dough begins to hold together. 

3. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface and press into a round about 1/2 inch thick. Using a biscuit cutter dipped in flour, cut biscuits into rounds. Gather scraps and press into another round and repeat.

4. Transfer biscuits to an ungreased baking sheet. Brush the tops of the biscuits with the beaten egg. Sprinkle the biscuits with the cracked coriander seeds and grate a little extra cheese over the tops. 

5. Bake biscuits for about 15-20 minutes, or until golden brown. Cool on a rack and serve warm or room temperature.

4 comments:

  1. I am so jealous of your ramps! AND the biscuits for that matter! Is there any substitute for ramps? I've never had them...

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  2. They have a very strong onion/garlic flavor that's pretty unique, but in this recipe you could substitute scallions and maybe add some garlic to get some more punch!

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  3. These sound great! I have never had ramps. Where did you find them?

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  4. I'm excited to try this recipe! I also adore ramps, and have been swimming in them this season. The forests near my home in Ithaca, NY contain unbelievable amounts. You might enjoy this post about ramps from my blog, The Mushroom Forager: http://themushroomforager.com/2011/04/21/the-ramp-ritual/

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