Wild leeks, aka ramps – Foraging for local food is always in season

Wild Leeks, (Allium tricoccum) also known locally as ramps, grow wild and fairly abundantly here in our Eastern Ontario woods. It’s a spring delicacy to look forward to each spring, easily harvested before the blackflies arrive, and prized for their culinary value because they’re versatile to cook with, and so very tasty!

Foraging food from the woods is a joy everyone should experience and leeks never disappoint! There are dozens of ways to cook and eat them.  From omelettes to pesto, soups, sandwiches, salads, or even pickled, and that’s just for a start, foodies are coming up with new ways to enjoy leeks all the time.

With that in mind, and after perusing through some food photos on Pinterest, I was intrigued by Hassleback potatoes enough to make them. Thought they’d be the perfect candidate for my leeks harvest, too.

I washed the harvest, chopped them up, squeezed some lemon juice on them and voila.. (see photo!). I stuffed the potatoes, which look like edible accordions, along with the baked chicken thighs, which were also stuffed with mushrooms, goat cheese and the rest of the ramps. Delicious!

If you don’t have access to leeks where you are, I am offering several tasty culinary goodies from my harvest at the store. We’ll have our own hand made, locally sourced and locally created herbal Vinegars and condiments available again this spring, while supplies last,  which offer a taste of these delightful plants.

With regards to the leek pesto I created, silly me forgot to take a photo. In any case, here’s an easy recipe (below) that anyone can do.  It is lovely drizzled all over fresh pasta or spread on some crusty baked bread. Nice as a dip or on salad, too!

The directions are similar to a basil pesto, but with a substitution of leeks. One could experiment and add both!

Ingredients:

  • Dozen leek leaves
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 3/4 cup of parmesan cheese grated
  • 1/2 cup of olive oil
  • 1/4 cup of pine nuts (roasted)
  • (optional) 1/2 cup of fresh parsley

Combine in blender and mix to a smooth paste. Enjoy!

Happy foraging, but please note: Don’t take more than necessary from the wild. Take a few, but leave most behind. – Thank you!

Sharing our DIY Moth repel bag recipe, plus other handy household uses for herbs

lavender-sachets-moth-repel-dryer-bagsWe’re sharing a few fragrant, old time herbal potpourri recipes you can create for everyday household use. These are  remedies that have stood the test of time. No chemicals required!

To make a Moth Repel Bag, use a muslin or organic cotton drawstring bag which allows the scent of the herbs inside to circulate without restriction.  The herbs I’ve suggested (below) are pleasant for people, but not moths! The sachets help to keep wool, angora, cashmere, and other natural animal hair fibres safe.

In all actuality, herbs do not repel moths, but rather mask the scent of most natural fibres, keeping them safely disguised from unwanted visitors.


Mint Moth Chase-Away
2 cups of dried mint, either spearmint or peppermint
1/3 cup of dried rosemary
1 cup dried Thyme
1/3 cup of ground cloves


Cedar Shaving Chaser
2 cups of cedar shavings
1/2 cup of Lavender
1/2 cup of wormwood
1/2 cup of ground cloves


Lavender  (Old French recipe)
2 cups of Lavender
1/2 cup of pennyroyal
1/2 cup of ground cloves
1 cup of dried thyme


last-of-the-lavender-harvestLavender is my ‘go-to’ herb. I’ve been known to pop a couple sachets inside the hockey skates and work boots that accumulate around our house. 😉

Sachets can also be thrown in the dryer, which will lightly scent your sheets & towels. Just give them a good squeeze after each use to release the oils from the flowers, which is what offers that lovely aromatherapy scent. The bags can be used this way, about a dozen times before the florets start to get a bit icky. Then you know it’s time to compost them, bag and all! : )

Other herbs said to ward off moths include Tansy, Sage, Santolina, and Southernwood.
* Pet owners take note: Pennyroyal is also said to repel fleas.

Have a lovely weekend! ~ Karen

Wall Flower Studio business logo square

Sharing our Basil Pesto recipe – Bon Appétit!

Mmmm, Pesto.

fresh-basil-pesto-recipe-wfsDrizzle it over pasta, mix it in salads, or top it on cooked veggies such as green beans, asparagus, or artichoke.

Please feel free to print (and/or) share our recipes!

Just a note about the ingredients in this pesto.. I like to mix it up a bit sometimes by adding spinach, pine nuts, and  just hint of our own locally made herbal vinegar. Yum!

Bon Appétit!