This orecchiette pasta pairs two foods you might find on a spring hike: morels and ramps, the latter being the wild leeks that grow from South Carolina to Canada. Both have the fresh earthiness of spring, tempered here by the richness of Grana Padano and mascarpone. Buying morels can get expensive, so if you can only afford a few, you can make up for it by adding another portobello or two.–Louisa Shafia

LC Ravishing Ramps Note

You gotta get ramps while you can. Trust us.

Two white ceramic bowls filled with orecchiette with morel mushrooms and ramps and a dollop of mascarpone.

Orecchiette with Morel Mushrooms and Ramps

5 / 2 votes
This orecchiette with morel mushrooms and ramps combines earthiness, richness, and all the brightness of spring into one dish.
David Leite
Servings4 servings
Calories462 kcal
Prep Time10 minutes
Cook Time25 minutes
Total Time35 minutes


  • 20 ramps
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 cups dried orecchiette, (or small shells or another bite-size pasta)
  • 4 portobello mushrooms, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 15 morel mushrooms, quartered lengthwise
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 cup grated Grana Padano or pecorino Romano cheese
  • Minced flat-leaf parsley leaves, for garnish
  • 4 tablespoons mascarpone


  • Trim the roots from the ramps with a paring knife, and remove any loose outer layers clinging to the bulbs. Wash the ramps a few times in warm water to remove the dirt. Coarsely chop the leaves and set them aside. Slice the bulbs down the middle and set aside.
  • Add 2 tablespoons of the olive oil to a large pot of salted water and bring to a boil. When the water is boiling, stir in the orecchiette and cook until al dente, about 10 minutes.
  • Heat a large sauté pan over medium-high heat and add the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil. Add the ramp bulbs and sauté for 2 minutes. Add the portobellos and cook until soft, stirring often, about 4 minutes. Add the garlic and morels and cook for 2 minutes more. Pour in the wine and simmer gently, uncovered, for 10 minutes.
  • When the pasta is ready, drain it, reserving 1/4 cup of the cooking water. Add the pasta and the cooking water to the mushrooms along with the ramp leaves, lemon zest, and nutmeg, and cook on high for 2 minutes.
  • Serve the pasta piping hot with a shower of grated Grana Padano on top. Garnish with the minced parsley and season with freshly ground black pepper. Finish each serving with a tablespoon dollop of mascarpone spooned on top.
Lucid Food

Adapted From

Lucid Food

Buy On Amazon


Serving: 1 portionCalories: 462 kcalCarbohydrates: 47 gProtein: 12 gFat: 24 gSaturated Fat: 7 gMonounsaturated Fat: 11 gTrans Fat: 1 gCholesterol: 22 mgSodium: 105 mgFiber: 5 gSugar: 6 g

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Tried this recipe?Mention @leitesculinaria or tag #leitesculinaria!
Recipe © 2009 Louisa Shafia. Photo © 2009 Jennifer Martiné. All rights reserved.

About David Leite

I count myself lucky to have received three James Beard Awards for my writing as well as for Leite’s Culinaria. My work has also appeared in The New York Times, Martha Stewart Living, Saveur, Bon Appétit, Gourmet, Food & Wine, Yankee, Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune, The Washington Post, and more.

Hungry For More?

Homemade Yellow Mustard

Why make your own mustard? Because you can, dammit! And if that’s not reason enough, there’s no comparison between this and the store-bought stuff. Enough said.

1 hr 45 mins

Batter-Fried Chicken

Proof that it doesn’t take buttermilk or an insufferably long overnight brine to make insanely tender, crazily crisp, gosh darn perfect fried chicken.

1 hr 30 mins

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating


  1. 5 stars
    Thank you for bringing this recipe back! It is absolutely delicious!! All of the flavors work perfectly together! I made it last year and recently I just tracked down some ramps and morels to make again! I cannot wait!