Skip to main content

Tramping for Ramps..Season 2, Paneer & Peas in a creamy Ramp sauce.



 Spring... you definitely know its here when you spy these beauties in a single basket on the supermarket grocery shelf.. accompanied by a gasp inducing price tag.. ~ $12.99 /lb.. Black Truffles, they ain't, but addictive & seductive enough to compulsively  buy some each time I make a visit.
I'm referring to Ramps, that all American wild onion that peeps out from swampy shaded land all the way from the south to Canada.
The term Ramps derives from the Old English word Ramson, the term used for another wild species of onion , the European bear leek. Resembling scallions with broad green leaves, the flavor has been described somewhat as similar to " fried green onions with a dash of funky feet".





If Wikipedia is to be believed, the city of Chicago (shikaakwa translated as 'wild onion', in the local Native American language) got its name from the wide swath of wild ramps that once grew in the area.

I've been hooked on to ramps for over a year now, when I meekly experimented with the vegetable by combining them with potatoes & added them to a Pasta dish , and before I knew it, the ramp season was over!, so a year later, Here's recipe # 3 -  a Mutter Paneer in a creamy ramp flavored Makhani sauce.


In order to ensure that the ramps flavor is not overshadowed, The only 'heat source for this decadent dish comes from crushed pickled green peppercorns. (They should be available at the local Indian grocery, look out for 'Lakshmi' brand green pepper pickles. Thanks Indian Food Rocks for asking me about it!)

Paneer & Peas in a creamy Ramp sauce.




You need:

8 stalks of Ramp, stems & leaves (chopped into thin strips)
8 oz. block of Paneer cut into 1/2 inch cubes
1 cup frozen peas
2 cups skim or low fat milk
2-3 tablespoons sour cream
1/8 teaspoon turmeric powder
1/2 teaspoon Garam Masala
Salt to taste
1 sprig (~ 15-20) pickled peppercorns, smashed
2 tablespoon vegetable oil
Sprigs of fresh mint  for garnish

to be ground to a paste:
 8 ramp bulbs, (the white part)
1 large onion, (I prefer white, but the red ones will do in a pinch)
1/2 cup broken cashew nuts
2 tablespoons minced ginger root
2 tablespoons unsalted butter 

Blend the ramp, onions, cashew & ginger into fine paste preferably without using any additional water.

The lavender color is due to the red onions used! It disappears once the mix is sauteed.

Heat the butter in a large skillet and add the cashew paste. Saute on low heat, until the mixture loses that raw onion aroma.

Heat vegetable oil in another smaller non stick skillet and saute the frozen peas. Add the ramp stalks & leaves & allow to wilt.


Transfer to wilted greens & peas into the cashew mixture, along with the Paneer, crushed peppercorns (Add a little in the beginning and increase as per your personal taste)  turmeric, salt and garam masala.

Mix to combine. Add the milk, gradually into the curry, stirring all the while. Simmer on low heat until the flavors combine. Stir in the Sour cream& transfer to a serving dish. Garnish with mint & serve warm with Parathas or Roti.





Bon Appetit!

Comments

  1. I can't see beyond the pickled peppercorns! Did you pickle them? If so, where did you find them in the US? You lucky lucky gal!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Lakshmi Brand Green pepper pickles, I get them anytime at the local Indian grocery stores..

      Delete
    2. Thanks! I need to look for them!

      Delete
  2. This is really interesting…
    chennaiflowerplaza.com

    ReplyDelete
  3. Sounds good! Saw these wild onions and wondered about them. Interesting use of pickled peppers. Love the info you incorporate, other than the recipe itself.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Rmaps..added to my food dictionary. Hope I get my hands on ramps and cook the same soon! Till then spring onion will do for this recipe.

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

I'd love to hear feedback from you, your thoughts, ideas and suggestions.

Popular posts from this blog

Resolutions, part deux.

Some of us get to make resolutions not once, but twice every year. The first of course, on January 1st along with the rest of the world and the second time around, the last day of  the Indian festival of Navaratri, The 10th day that marks the end of the festival is known as Vijaya Dashami - the day when scores of kids , willing or not,  are marched off to commence music, dance classes or start learning to play an instrument.

Navratri, once you strip it of its patriarchal trappings, is an empowering festival celebrating the Mother Goddess. Each day, her various attributes (a daughter, a mother, a wife, a warrior, an intellectual,  as an unfettered free spirit etc.) are explored and worshiped. and thefood offering invariably is a protein rich Sundal made with various lentils - a meat substitute, a nod to a pre-Buddhist era when meat was an accepted part of Hinduism.



Back to the resolutions.. you'd have to have been living in a cave this past year not to have been made aware of how …

Aug 9 - Cauliflower Kolhapuri

I have a dear friend from school who lives in the City of Kolhapur in Maharashtra. When I visited her  at the gorgeous heritage resort she owns there en route to a holiday in Goa, she gifted me with a spice blend that I treasured to the last speck. It sat  at the bottom of my freezer and was doled out for special dishes just like Saffron is rationed out in many Indian homes. Its a lip smacking flaming  hot blend of onions, garlic and the famed Kolhapuri Mirch (red chili).

I marinaded cauliflower florets in a paste of this spice blend , salt and oil, and roasted it in a 450 F oven. Finished with a handful of green coriander berries, this was a fabulous treat paired with roomali roti.

Product Review: Ninja Mega Kitchen system and a recipe for Masala Dosa

One of the biggest reasons for attending conferences is the priceless experience of meeting fellow bloggers and get an invaluable exposure to all things  culinary. This includes vendors with new products to savor and get inspiration from.

I had no complaints about whatever appliances I had for making traditional Dosa (Traditional South Indian rice & lentil crepes) batter, a sturdy tabletop stone grinder that you could add the Urad dal, turn the timer on , and 30  minutes later, come back to a container full of fluffy, batter with the consistency of whipped egg whites. The
The cons of this is the cleaning up, of the various parts, the roller, the grinding bin, the multiple trays on which the rollers need to be placed while transferring the rice & lentil batter, the invariable drips of thick batter on the counter.... you get the point, It takes quite a bit of time.

I was pleasantly surprised when the appliance company, Ninja asked me if I'd like to try any of their appli…