Go ahead and make pesto with ramps but I would suggest stretching them with other greens like spinach, watercress, or parsley. They are also good simply grilled alongside asparagus with a little olive oil, salt, and pepper. Here is a recipe for chimichurri, try this on grilled meats or vegetables.
1 bunch ramps (about 10-12)
1/4 cup olive oil
1/2 Tbsp. red wine vinegar
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. red pepper flakes
Separate leaves from bulbs and chop both coarsely. Put bulbs in food processor and blend until minced. Add rest of ingredients and puree until smooth.
If you grill the ramps beforehand, this will give the butter a milder, smoky flavor.
Makes 1 cup
2 sticks (8 oz.) butter, softened
1/2 lb. ramps, minced
Salt and pepper
Cream butter in a mixer with paddle attachment. Add minced ramps and salt and pepper. Mix until well blended.
Transfer mixture to waxed paper, parchment paper, or plastic wrap, and roll into a cylinder, twisting ends to seal. Wrap this in foil and either refrigerate for a few weeks or freeze for up to six months.
Asparagus Ramp Soup
Serves four to six.
2 tsp. neutral oil
1 bunch (approx. 12) ramps, cleaned and chopped, bulbs separated from green tops
1 medium waxy potato, peeled, cut into 1/2-inch dice
1 lb. asparagus, woody ends removed, cut into 1/2-inch slices
1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper
Splash of white wine
Salt and pepper
4 cups vegetable stock
Lime juice to taste
Sauté ramp bulbs in oil for a few minutes, then add potato, asparagus, and cayenne. Sauté a few minutes more, then add white wine. Cook down for a few minutes, until asparagus is bright green. Season with salt and pepper.
Add stock and cook soup for about 10 minutes, or until potatoes are tender.
Puree in blender, adding lime juice to taste.
Serve topped with homemade croutons and/or extra blanched asparagus tips.