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Fresh at Farmers Markets This Week

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Summer is here! After Saturday’s solstice, the season has officially begun. Even without a calendar, area farmers tailgate market goers know this to be true by the 80 degrees reached at 10:30 in the morning, and the colorful summer veggies filling vendors’ stalls.

And what better example of a summer veggie than summer squash! For the last month we’ve watched them get bigger and bigger, and now they’re here in abundance and sure to stay through the season. Find varieties like Crooked Neck squash, which is yellow and bumpy with a curved neck, from farmers like Blue Meadow Farms (West Asheville Tailgate Market, Asheville City Market, Asheville City Market- South, and Black Mountain Tailgate Market). You can get scallop squash, which looks flattened and like a spaceship, from such vendors as Highgate Farm (East Asheville Tailgate Market, Weaverville Tailgate Market, and Black Mountain Tailgate Market). Additionally, River Bottom Bounty Farm (Transylvania Farmers Market) has bright, golden zucchini to add color to any dish. Other varieties, such as Fordhook and Black Beauties- the standard dark green zucchini everyone knows and loves- have been sighted at nearly every tailgate market in the region.

Some new items were spotted at the West Asheville Tailgate Market this week highlighted by leeks from Bee Tree Farm, wonderful for stir fry or soup. Gardens United has string beans, including Royal Burgundy, Wax, and Provider beans which are superb for salads or sauteed. And, Brittain Farms has fava beans, great for mixing with pasta or you can fry them to make a crunchy, salty snack!

A big tailgate market announcement for you market lovers: after three and a half years behind the Asheville Chamber of Commerce, the Montford Farmers Market is relocating to the River Arts District. Due to a growing need for parking from Chamber resident Lenoir Rhyne University, the market is moving to All Souls Pizza at 175 Clingman Avenue starting Wednesday, July 2. The market will be renamed as the River Arts District Farmers Market. A Grand Opening Celebration will be held on Wednesday, July 9, from 2 to 10 pm, in collaboration with All Souls’ one year anniversary. Festivities will include live music, food specials, market tastings, and more.

For a complete list of Appalachian Grown™ certified tailgate markets browse our online Local Food Guide or online farmers market calendar.

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