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Fresh at Farmers Markets This Week

Holidays — no matter where in the world — are predicated on stories. Stories about religious figures, historical accounts, or momentous events; the origins of people, places, and ideas. This holiday season, add the story of your meal to the mix: the story of the farms and farmers that grew your food; of their journey to starting or taking over the farm; of the pastoral fields with mountain backdrops; of the heirloom variety of squash; of the trip to the farmers market to get it.

We’re only a week from Thanksgiving and if you haven’t reserved your turkey, it may be hard to do now, but you can still give the folks on this list a try. No bird? No worries. There are plenty of other perfect proteins to feature in your Thanksgiving meal. Straying from tradition can be fun and exciting, and certainly very delicious! Some ideas: pork shoulder or pork belly, leg of lamb, whole ham, beef brisket, rib roast, chicken, or rabbit. Or, if you or your guests are vegetarian, plant-based proteins such as Smiling Hara Tempeh and No Evil Foods have great choices.

Pick from your favorite vegetable dishes you’ve made all fall to share with friends and family for the holidays. Leading up to the meal, appetizers are key to keeping your family and friends from getting too hungry. Pick up pickles, cheeses, breads at market to make your spread. Pies are the name of the Thanksgiving dessert game. At markets, find sweet potatoes, pumpkins, and apples from local farmers for those seasonal pie delights.

Do you have time while traveling or cooking to listen to stories? ASAP’s radio series, Growing Local, tells the tales of farms and farmers in the region every week on WNCW. You can listen at any time on ASAP’s website and through SoundCloud, iTunes, or any platform you use for listening to podcasts. Another great source for sharing your connection to farms with family and friends? Social media accounts of farmers — you can show the sunset over the field where your squash came from, via a farmer’s Instagram or Facebook post.

This Thanksgiving, may your food be delicious but also let its story and origins be nourishing for your family and friends.

Area farmers tailgate markets take place throughout the region. As always, you can find information about farms, tailgate markets, and farm stands, including locations and hours, by visiting ASAP’s online Local Food Guide.