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Fresh at Farmers Markets This Week

This week is the official start of fall and it is surely reflected in the produce at area farmers tailgate markets.

Healthy, hearty, and delicious, sweet potatoes are perfect for the shifting weather. Sweet potatoes need to “cure” first before they’re ideal to eat. This means they should sit in a warm, well-ventilated space for about two weeks while they become sweeter and more nutritious. Some farmers have done this step for you, though others sell them freshly dug from the field, so it’s good to ask. The very first of these highly anticipated fall treats are now available at market. Pick some up this week from Ivy Creek Family Farm (Weaverville Tailgate Market and North Asheville Tailgate Market) and Highgate Farm (East Asheville Tailgate Market, Weaverville Tailgate Market, and Black Mountain Tailgate Market).

Edamame, green young soybeans usually sold in their pods, are popping up around markets. Great to eat boiled and salted as a snack, edamame are quite satisfying. Angel Ridge Farm (Madison County Farmers Market) and Ivy Creek Family Farm both have edamame for sale now.

Blue Ribbon Farm (Asheville City Market and River Arts District Farmers Market) and Paper Crane Farm (West Asheville Tailgate Market and Asheville City Market) are among the farmers who have leeks for sale. Leeks can sometimes be overlooked in the midst of other more common members of the onion family (alliums). Prized by culinary folk around the world, leeks are known as having a more complex and dynamic range of flavor than onions. Other alliums worth mentioning are the twelve varieties of garlic that Fork Mountain Farm (Weaverville Tailgate Market) have to offer!

Long Valley Eco-Biotic Farm (Madison County Farmers Market, West Asheville Tailgate Market, and Weaverville Tailgate Market) has celery and tomatillos right now. Celery can be challenging to grow, and have not been particularly prominent at market, yet they are immensely flavorful to cook with. Tomatillos have a wonderful sweet flavor when cooked and are great for making salsas, or roasting with chicken, fish, or tofu.

Upcoming events at some of the Asheville area markets:

Oakley Farmers Market’s third annual Harvest Festival will take place on the last market day of the season, October 16, during market hours from 3:30-6:30. Join in an afternoon of delicious food, great music, awesome prizes, and super fun kid’s activities!

The River Arts District Farmers Market will be fully functioning again this week, now that repairs on the property have been completed. In fact, this week will be their biggest market yet! Market sponsors Noble Cider, Bike Ready and Katuah Market will all be there, in addition to the largest group of vendors this season.

Asheville City Market will be hosting Organic Gardening Magazine on October 11. Join them for planting fall starts, cooking demonstrations, free samples from their partners, 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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