Ramp Jam Recipe

This is a just a variation of a recipe for green onion jam I adapted and tweaked from a chef who I admire very much. Not exactly a “jam” like you would expect, it’s savory and has a bit of a slight crunch to it as well. You could definitely still put it on toast (I do) but usually it’s function is more of a condiment, to be used as part of the accoutrement for platter of cured meats or cheese. It is so much more than just a condiment though.

Since the recipe contains a bit of cornstarch to thicken it and give it it’s “jammy” quality, it will in turn thicken other things that you add it to. Gravy, fruit sauce, heck barbecue sauce. The ramp jam’s possibilities in the kitchen are only limited by your imagination. I’ve used it to make vinaigrettes, flavor sour cream, or I’ll just dollop it on something, anything. This week I used it to make a sauce for beef roast. I took some jam, thinned it with just a bit of reduced, strong pork glace then mounted it with a little butter, and whisked it in to thicken it lightly: it was the best thing I made all week.

RAMP JAM

Yield: 3 cups

Ingredients

  • 4 cups young or middle aged ramp bulbs sliced 1/4 inch
  • 1.5 tsbp cornstarch, dissolved in 1/2 cup water
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup sugar or honey
  • 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tsp each brown mustard seed and yellow mustard seed
  • 1/2 tsp each whole caraway and cumin seed, toasted
  • 2 tbsp flavorless oil like grapeseed or canola
  • Tbsp chopped wild mint (optional)
  • Tiny pinch of crushed red pepper flakes

Method

  1. Heat the oil in a pan on medium heat, add half of the ramps to the pan and cook for a minute or two until translucent. Add the salt, spices and sugar and cook until the sugar is dissolved.
  2. Add the vinegar and cook for a minute more. Add the cornstarch dissolved in water and cook until the mixture thickens, just a few minutes. Add the reserved ramps and the chopped wild mint if using.
  3. Transfer the ramp jam to a container and cool immediately. It will keep for a long time if it is tightly covered. The ramp jam could also be frozen easily.

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