“I think they’re best paired with wild mushrooms and goat feta cheese over a protein, freshly picked and cooked over an open fire in a cast iron skillet with a big chunk of bacon and a few potatoes, or in a cornbread stuffing.”
What’s John Stehling—who owns Appalachian Grown™ partner restaurant Early Girl Eatery with his wife, Julie—talking about? Ramps, of course! (Keep reading for one of their favorite ramp recipes!)
Early Girl is gearing up to host our upcoming benefit dinner entitled In Celebration of Ramps on April 22 in honor of Get Local ramp month. The event will feature the recipes of two James Beard Award-winning chefs: Andrea Reusing of the Lantern in Chapel Hill and Robert Stehling of the Hominy Grill in Charleston! The menu is slated to include NC farm-raised sturgeon, local country ham, vegetarian dishes, and much more—all featuring local ramps, of course. Wine is included in the ticket price, and Hominy Grill’s famous chocolate pudding will end the evening. (Learn more about the event and purchase tickets HERE.)
Early Girl’s chef/owner recently shared their classic Southern ramp cornbread stuffing recipe with us for our Eatin’ in Season article in Mountain Xpress. Find the recipe below, and click through to the article for more thoughts on ramps from the mastermind of one of Asheville’s favorite farm-friendly restaurants!
Ramp Cornbread Stuffing
Recipe from Early Girl Eatery
1 cup celery, diced
1 cup green peppers, diced
2 cups locally grown or harvested ramps, diced
1 tbs garlic, minced
5 cups crumbled cornbread
2 cups stock, vegetable or chicken
1 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup parsley, finely chopped
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
Saute celery, peppers, and ramps with garlic until tender. Season vegetables and mix in remaining ingredients. Cook in a greased baking pan at 450 for 45 minutes or until done. Enjoy!
*For information about harvesting ramps sustainably and responsibly, visit http://smnpa.org.