Ramason salt

 Ramson has a short shelf life in its natural form, First of all the growing season is short  and the leaves are best before they start to bloom. Second, when they are picked you need to use or process them fairly soon, before they lose they aroma and become more grassy than garlic. There are some many things you can make with ransom to make it last a little bit longer than the herbs short season. Ramson salt is one of them and they are great little gifts as well.
Ramson salt, ramson, Homemade, DIY, ramsløk, ramsløksalt, analizagonzales.com
INGREDIENTS
100 g table salt + 900 g flake salt
100 g (2 cups very tightly packed) chopped wild garlic leaves, no stems!
A little bit of water to get the blades running.
INSTRUCTIONS
Wash the wild garlic and remove the stems. Chop it roughly and make sure you are left with 100 g (2 cups
tightly packed) wild garlic leaves.
Place the wild garlic into a food processor and run it on max speed until you got a rough  consistency add a bit of the water if it does not chop.  Add about 100 g of the salt to the wild garlic puree. Process at max speed until it forms a creamy paste.
Pour the remaining salt into a big bowl and add the garlic-salt paste. Take a fork and mix it until it is evenly combined. It will look like damp, green sand.
Line two roasting tray with baking paper and spread the damp salt evenly on each one. Let the salt dry in the sun for 8-10 hours or place in the oven for about 3-4 hours at 50°C. You can also use a dehydrator.
Let it cool down before transferring into an air tight container.
The salt has no expiration date, but it will lose its flavour over time, make sure the jars are airtight or store it in the freezer.

Pickled ramson buds

I have a fondness for foraging, I might have inherited it from my mom. She used to take us to the woods to pick berries and mushrooms. The satisfaction that I have gone out and gathered treats that nature has given us and preserved it. Now I try to pass this passion on to my children.

analizagonzales.com, picking ramson, ramson, ramsløk, foraging, wild garlic,

Earlier I have made ramson butter, cream cheese with ramson, ramson pesto, ramson puré, had ramson in stews, sauce and gravy. But I have never pickled ramson buds before and wanted to try that. Actually I wanted to make them the same way as you make capers. I got the idea  from the blog Thirsty for tea, she had posted sakura blossom sushi( her post HERE, when the cherry trees blossom here I will try this too). I thought why not do the same with the ramson buds. I did not go through the capers process, I just pickled them the regular way with vinegar.

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PICKLED RAMSON BUDS

Ramsons buds
White wine vinegar
Apple cider vinegar
1 tbs salt for every 2,5 dl vinegar
1 tbs sugar for every 2,5 dl vinegar

analizagonzales-com-pickled-ramson-ramson-buds-pickled-ramson-buds-pickling-

sterilize the jars and lids you are going use.

In every jar Minime and I put 50/50 opened buds and closed buds.

In a pot boil the vinegar, salt and sugar. and when it is boiling take it of the heat and let it cool for about 5-10 minutes and top the jars with the liquid. Close the jars and put them somewhere cool until you need delicate little buds and flowers to garnish a marvelous dish:)

analizagonzales-com-pickled-ramson-ramson-buds-pickled-ramson-buds-pickling-

For filipinos reading this, the brine is super with chicaron.

Pickled ramson on Jarlsberg cubes, ramson buds, ramson, cheese
Jarlsberg cubes with pickled ramson buds

Pasta with ramson pesto, scallops and almonds

scallop and ramson pasta

Foraging for some or even just one of the ingredients for my dishes gives me a lot of satisfaction. A couple of weeks ago I picked a basket full of ramson leaves and made a few condiments. Last time I posted ramson butter, this time I made ramson pesto and made a simple pasta dish.

This dish has few ingredients but it is really tasty.

500 g pasta
4-5 tbsp ramson pesto, see recipe below
20 scallops
100 g almonds
2-3 tbsp butter
1 lemon, the juice and a few wedges for garnish
Salt and pepper to taste

Start by cooking lightly salted water for your pasta. Roughly chop the almonds and cut the scallops in two

When the water is boiling add your pasta.

Melt the butter in a frying pan and start by browning the chopped almonds, when nice and toasty remove the almonds and set the nuts aside.

Fry the scallops in the butter on both sides, add the juice of half a lemon or more. Salt and pepper to taste.

Drain your finished pasta and add desired amount of ramson pasta, stir untill nicely blended. Plate your pasta and top with the scallops and nuts.

Garnish with lemon and some fresh ramson.

 

Picture from when I made ramson butter

Ramson pesto

200 g Ramson
75 g white hard cheese(I used a cheese called Balsfjord, a white norwegian goats cheese)
150 ml rapeseed oil
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Start by placing almonds and cheese into a food processor and blitz into crumbs. Add wild garlic, process again until you’ve got a coarse pesto. Then add the oil little by little, with the machine still running.
Season with salt and pepper.

Put the pesto in cooled sterilized jars and pour a little oil on top and keep them in the fridge. The pesto will keep for a few weeks.

Scallop pasta

 

Ramson butter

Ramson butter

Lets go for a walk it is so nice outside, I told my children and my mum and lets see if we can find anything. Find what?

Every spring I go on a little hike to find some ramson in the near by forest. Actually I did not go last year, so when I go there I was a little lost, I did not recognize my surroundings and the path was almost over grown. My mum kept asking if I was sure we went in the right direction, when suddenly MiniMe turned and said “Mum, there it is”

Wild garlic

Sure enough there it was the little patch with ramson growing amongst wood sorrel and horsetail. My nose must have been stuffy, usually you can smell a faint whiff of garlic when you walk by. Yes I am sure this is wild garlic and not lily of the valley.

Fun fact: Chicago was named after the North American ramson, because of the dense growth of ramps near Lake Michigan . The plant, was called shikaakwa (chicagou) in the language of local native tribes.

Ramson

For this butter that I made you only need a bunch of wild garlic and som nice butter.

 

Ramson butter recipe

Cut the ramson any way you want and mix it with the butter. Let it sit for a while, to let the flavours mix and enjoy it with some nice bread or on some nice meat.

Wild garlic butter

Hot spcy vinegar, Suka na maanghang

Suka na maanghang in Baybayin

Chicharron is a snack that is popular in every country with spanish heritage and probably has hundreds of regional variations. In the Philippines though a must have condiment with chicharron, is hot and spicy vinegar.

As a kid on vacation in the Philippines chicharron is one of the snacks I always bought. I can remember buying chicharron from vendors in the the Philippines and they often came with a tub with hot and spicy vinegar.

One of the tell tell signs to spot a Filipino is the persons love of vinegar. Being filipino I love the taste of vinegar:)

500 ml sugar cane vinegar
20 pcs. red and green Thai chilies
1 whole head garlic, peeled
1 tbsp. whole peppercorns
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. sugar

In a saucepan, combine the vinegar, salt and sugar. Bring to a light simmer and mix until the salt and sugar are dissolved. Set aside to cool a bit.

Thoroughly wash the chilies and cut the stems before putting them inside the bottle.

Press the garlic cloves with the side of the knife to lightly crush allowing the flavors to come out. Put them inside the bottle

Put the whole peppercorns inside the bottle

With a funnel pour the warm vinegar into the bottle. Allow to completely cool at room temperature and seal the bottle with a cork.

Steep for a couple of days before using. The vinegar can be stored inside the fridge for several months. The flavors of the spices will intensifies the longer it is kept.

So get a bag of chicharron or some kind of pork rind snack and enjoy them with hot and spicy vinegar.

Kimchikraut

Kimchikraut, what is that? You might think:D
It is just finely sliced cabbage and grated carrots  fermented with Korean flavours.
I thought to make some garnish for a sandwich that I am going to make later.
This yeld about 2 cups finished product:
1/2 finely cabbage
3 shredded carrots1 dl sea salt
Clean water
5-6 crushed garlic cloves
1 tsp finely grated ginger
1 tsp sugar
2 tsps shrimp paste
1-5 tablespoons Korean chili flakes / or regular chili flakes
4 spring onions
chopped chives

Combine vegetables and salt in a bowl to extract water for about 30 minutes.

Submerge the vegetables in cold water for about 2 hours, then rinse well and drain
Put vegetables in a colander and rinse well and allow it to drain.

Mix the remaining ingredients together except the scallions and chives. Add this paste to the rinsed and dried vegetables in a mixing bowl, with a gloved hand mix everything together. Lastly sprinkle the scallions and chives n top and mix them in with the rest.

Place the vegetables in sterilized jars.

Leave the jars for 1-5 days, you can see that it starts to bubble and the build-up liquid and the liquid may seep out.

Give the Kimchi some daily attention, push any vegetables down with a clean spoon and make sure that the vegetables are submerged in the liquid that is building up.This might releases small amounts of gases that builds up during fermentation.

Taste the kimchikraut during this process and when the flavors is as you want it, put the jars in your fridge. You can eat it right away, but it’s probably best a week or two later.

 

Achara

The Filipino version of a green papaya salad, is a lightly pickled vegetables mix called Achara. The key ingredients in this salad is green papaya, ginger and of course vinegar. You can make this with or without chili, the heat is up to you.

Lovely as a side dish with grilled and fried dishes.

The brine usually used for this is very sweet, I halved the amount of sugar for this recipe

5 dl cane vinegar
250 g sugar
50 g ginger, peeled and roughly chopped
15 birds eye chilis, chopped( you can use more or less)
2 crushed garlic cloves
1 ts salt

1 small green papaya, peeled and julienned
1 carrot, peeled and julienned
1/2 Yellow bell pepper
1/2 Red bell pepper
1/2 Green bell pepper
4 red birds eye chilis, for decoration
4 green birds eye chilis, for decoration

Place the vinegar and sugar in a saucepan with the ginger, garlic, birds eye chilis and salt, stir and then bring to a boil. Remove from the heat let it cool a bit until finger warm.

Remove the ginger, garlic and chilis( you do not have to do this, but I like to do it) from the vinegar mixture and add the remaining ingredients, stir to combine and let it stand for at least 10 minutes.

Drain, discard the liquid and refrigerate until ready to serve.

 

Guacamole

Healthy yummy guacamole is also one of the must haves when we eat tacos in my household and it is so easy to make. You can make this avocado dish smooth or chunky depending on how you like it.

1 clove crushed garlic
Chopped chili as desired
2 ripe avocado
A half a handful of fresh coriander/cilantro
1/2 lime
1/2 teaspoon salt

Mix garlic and chili in a bowl, add the avocado and mash it with a fork.
Add the cilantro, lime juice and salt and mix everything well.
Easy peasy to make, server together with tacos, nachos or tortilla chips

Refried beans

This is absolutely a must when eating Tex-Mex for dinner
Refried beans are Mexico’s equivalent to mashed potatoes and it is made of pinto beans.
The actual name is frijoles refritos meaning well fried beans. The Anglo name suggests that these beans are fried, but that’s not the case.
There are many different ways to make refried beans and you can use most kinds of beans, but in traditional Tex-Mex pinto beans are used.
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2  large finely chopped onion
1 clove crushed garlic
800 g of cooked pinto beans or the kind you want to use.
1 teaspoon chili powder, may be omitted
1 dl vegetable stock / 1 cup water plus 1/2 vegetable bouillon cube
Salt and pepper as desired.
Saute the onions in oil on medium heat until it is tender and add the garlic and chili powder.
crush this in a blender with the liquid.
Pour this back into the saucepan and add the beans and boil until the beans are warmed through. about 5 minutes.
Mash beans with a spoon, salt and pepper as desired.
You can also add chopped fresh coriander if you desire.
 –
Serve this bean puree with your favorite Tex-Mex, taco, burito, Chimmichanga, tostada, quesedilla etc.