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Fresh at Farmers Markets This Week

The rain keeps coming in the Southern Appalachians, but that hasn’t stopped area farmers from bringing a variety of spring harvest to area farmers tailgate markets.

It’s time to start thinking about pestos as garlic can be found from Root Bottom Farm (Transylvania Farmers’ Market, West Asheville Tailgate Market). Don’t forget about garlic scapes, which you can get from lots of different farms including Tucker’s Garden (West Asheville Tailgate Market) and Highgate Farms (Black Mountain Tailgate Market, Weaverville Tailgate Market, West Asheville Tailgate Market). Experiment and try different kinds of greens when making pesto, including collards, kale, or dandelion greens. Speaking of garlic, Three Graces Dairy (many markets across the region) will have their scape goat cheese in a few weeks, and they still have their ramp goat cheese for a little while longer.

Strawberries are still in season and in abundance. Try your hand at a strawberry rhubarb pie with rhubarb from John’s Berry Patch & Farm (East Asheville Tailgate Market, West Asheville Tailgate Market). John reports that he will have blueberries the first week of July. While you’re making pies, there’s nothing like cherry pie, with cherries courtesy of McConnell Farms (Asheville City Market, North Asheville Tailgate Market, West Asheville Tailgate Market), raised in their greenhouses.

Other early summer favorites include broccoli, which is starting to come in and spotted at the table of Tucker’s Garden. And peas! Ivy Creek Family Farm (North Asheville Tailgate Market, Weaverville Tailgate Market) have sugar snap peas and Bear Necessities Farm (West Asheville Tailgate Market, Asheville City Market, Asheville City Market – South) have sweet peas. These are great in salads, stir fries, rice dishes, or all by themselves as a snack.

On Saturday, June 2, Asheville City Market is hosting a special Farm Tour 10th Anniversary Party to preview ASAP’s Farm Tour on June 23-24. The party will include family-friendly activities, the Buncombe County Farm Bureau Ag Simulator, and special giveaways.

Area farmers tailgate markets take place throughout the region. Check out the full list of spring market opening dates across 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.