lunch special: ramp pesto

May 3rd, 2011

It’s been two weeks since I’ve started my new schedule— 4 days of paid work, 1 day of my passion projects— and something kind of awesome happened. I’ve been making lunch. Often when it’s just me at home, I resort to something weird like cheese and nuts and dried fruit, but I decided that this is the perfect opportunity to challenge myself and have fun at the same time. So, without further ado I’m pleased to announce a new weekly column called lunch special. The goal of it will be to present a fresh, quick and delicious meal that can be make with stuff I already have in the fridge or cupboard.

I whipped up this super simple lunch last week and have been thinking about it since. Ramps are one of the few new things at the market this time of year, so of course I had some in hiding in the fridge, just waiting to be used. With little time, I boiled some water, then tossed the ramps in my food processor along with a handful of pine nuts, another handful of cheese and a drizzle of olive oil. A quick blitz and shazam, I had myself some potent smelling ramp pesto. I dropped my pasta in the boiling water, let it cook, then once it was drained I tossed the pasta with the pesto. It took all of 15 minutes and was totally awesome. Especially with a squirt of fresh lemon to jazz it up.

Lunch special success! Bonus, I had leftover pesto… woohoo!

ramp pesto
makes 4 servings
adapted from no recipes

10 ramps, roughly chopped
1/4 cup parmesan cheese
1/4 cup pine nuts, toasted
1/4 cup olive oil
salt and pepper
lemon wedge, for garnish

16 oz your favorite pasta cooked according to the package

Add the ramps, olive oil, pine nuts, parmesan cheese, salt and pepper to the food processor. Blitz until there are no big chunks remaining, but there should still be some texture to the pesto (i.e. you don’t want to puree it).
Boil the pasta according to the package directions in salted water until just al dente. Drain, reserving a little of the pasta water. Return the pasta to the pot and add the pesto. Toss to coat evenly, adding pasta water as needed if it starts sticking together.
Serve with lemon wedges for squeezing.

Comments: 8 Total

  1. Kristin

    May 3, 2011 at 7:54 am

    I’ve never heard of ramps before. What are they?

  2. Michelle

    May 3, 2011 at 8:43 am

    lovely light lunch!

  3. Christina

    May 3, 2011 at 9:58 am

    I’m with Kristin, what on earth is a ramp? Not sure we have those in England.

  4. Lisa (dinner party)

    May 3, 2011 at 10:58 am

    Glad you’re enjoying your new schedule. Keep the lunch posts coming!

  5. Eleanor W.

    May 3, 2011 at 2:16 pm

    Yum! I love making pesto with things other than basil. I have some ramps at home in the fridge too – pesto is a great idea! Enjoy your new schedule.

  6. Ruth

    May 3, 2011 at 2:29 pm

    Wow! This is wild garlic in ‘english’ english, if you know what I mean. I made some foccacia with these and some parmesan in the topping. Your pesto must have been awesome!

  7. Pingback: Midweek Masterpiece: Homemade Polenta with Ramp Pesto, Seared Brussels Sprouts, and Italian Sausage | 2 Cooks in the Kitchen

    May 5, 2011 at 10:45 pm
  8. Jessica

    May 9, 2011 at 3:27 pm

    This sounds great! I recently got some Himalayan pink salt and organic peppercorns from Sustainable Sourcing and I’ll have to try them out in this recipe. Thanks for sharing!

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