Giveaway Winner, and First Farmer’s Market Meal
First things first — wow, apparently there are a lot of you out there that love Greek yogurt (or really want to try it!) So, using the random number generator, the winner of the Stonyfield giveaway is…#60, Heather S.! Congrats, Heather; I’ll be in touch with you for your contact info so you can receive the book of goodies from Stonyfield. Thanks to all who commented!
And now, onto more good eating: namely, our farmer’s market has been open for a few weeks! Selection in early April usually includes spinach, ramps from Kingbird Farm, plenty of great meat from a few of my favorite farmers, and flowers galore.
welcome back! spiffy new sign…
Blue Heron Farm had lots of six-packs of greens and herbs
West Haven Farm was loaded up with gorgeous tulip bouquets
“bread not bombs” – a great motto
I love Fat Boy Bakery’s bread
This is what I look for in early spring! Kingbird Farm comes through again.
The lovely Heather, one half of the husband-wife duo who owns The Piggery
Our first market meal this year was this pasta dish: spicy Italian sausage from The Piggery (great stuff!) sauteed with garlicky sliced ramp bulbs, then tossed together with linguine, delicate spinach, and the green ramp tops; a little pasta cooking water brings the mixture together. It was a great early spring meal: still a little hearty with the sausage since it’s still cool, but with lots of fresh, bright, green flavors.
brown up the sausage, stir in the ramp bulbs
spicy and spring-y
Oh, and speaking of ramps — I look forward to them every year at the market; they’re only available for a few weeks, and their flavor is incredibly delicious. For those of you who haven’t seen or tasted ramps, they’re wild leeks, often found growing in open wooded areas near water, and their taste is a combination of garlic and pungent scallion, both in the bulb and carried through more delicately into the green tops. They often come with dirt clinging to the root end, so you need to clean them as you would a scallion, usually slipping off the top layer of skin where dirt is trapped.
clean the bottoms off the little stinky buggers
I usually buy a few bunches at the market each week while they’re available, but I had a great surprise this past weekend. I seem to have forgotten to mention here on EoS that B and I bought some acreage this past year, and we’re building a house on the land this summer(!) — and on the land is a wooded area, near a little pond. Well, we were walking through there on Saturday, and guess what we stumbled upon?
<gasp!> can it be?!
what makes my weekend? seeing these little guys popping out of the ground!
RAMPS!! A whole patch of them, growing near the edge of the woods by the pond. A ramp patch of our own! Weeeeeehoooo, good eating awaits! I foresee many early spring celebratory ramp dishes in our future…
Linguine with Spicy Sausage, Spinach and Ramps
an Eggs on Sunday original
1 pound good-quality hot Italian sausage, removed from casings
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 bunches of ramps (about 36), bulbs cleaned and sliced, green tops reserved
4 ounces organic spinach
1 pound linguine
parmigiano-reggiano cheese, for serving (optional)
Heat the olive oil over medium high heat in a large heavy skillet until shimmering. Add the sausage, out of its casing, and cook until browned and no longer pink, breaking up the chunks as it cooks. Add the sliced ramp bulbs and cook for 1 minute, until fragrant.
Meanwhile, cook the linguine in a large pot of salted boiling water. When the linguine is done cooking, drain it and reserve about 2 cups of the pasta cooking water. Add the drained linguine directly into the skillet with the sausage and ramp bulbs, then add in the spinach and green ramp tops. Toss together to combine, adding a little pasta water as you toss, until the pasta is moistened and the spinach and ramp tops are wilted but still bright green. Season generously with freshly ground black pepper, and more salt if needed.
Serve with grated parmigiano-reggiano cheese, if desired.