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[Photographs: J. Kenji Lopez-Alt]

I love ramps. Unreservedly. They are my favorite vegetable. And I say that about a lot of vegetables, but I really really mean it about ramps. Nothing says spring to me like ramps. Fried in butter, pickled, grilled, their sweet, oniony, grassy flavor is delicious in so many ways, and the season is just far too short.

But I've said all this before. Today we're just here to announce the start of ramp season, and what better way to do it than with a photo sent in by Slice regular dhorst, who lost her ramp virginity this year.

"Inspired by the ramp pizza at Motorino featured on Slice, I decided I had to go on a wild leek hunt. Miss Ellie, my husband and I headed to Van Buren Park located in one of the northern 'burbs of Syracuse. In the woods behind the pond at the park, I struck gold, or should I say green? I dug up a bunch and headed home. In the car, I said, "Wow, they sure smell awesome!" Jeff said, "Well, they certainly smell." He felt dizzy from the heady aroma. I had some on a pizza that night (see My Pie Monday next week), they were terrific. Pungent and well, wow. I plan on using some in a stir fry, lasagne and scalloped potatoes. I am proud to say that I am no longer a ramp virgin!"

We're proud of you too, dhorst, and can't wait to see that pie! Anyone else lose their ramp virginity this season?

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