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Fresh at Farmers Markets This Week

Winter squash are taking over area farmers tailgate markets. There are so many varieties to choose from! Some are more nutty, others are more sweet; some have thin skin that’s good for eatin’, while others have thick skin better suited for compost than consumption. Annie Louise Perkinson from Flying Cloud Farm (River Arts District Farmers Market, Asheville City Market, and North Asheville Tailgate Market) recommends you try a different one every week – that way you can learn about their distinctions and find which kinds are your favorites!

One thing is for sure: pumpkins usually eclipse all other winter squash in fame and fall cuisine. Pumpkin has its own pies, cakes, bars, cookies, even a caffeinated drink flavor! What’s interesting is that most other winter squash have much more flavor than pumpkins. Butternut, Candy Roasters, and Acorn squash are just some of the varieties that would make better pumpkin pie than a pumpkin. This harvest season, try substituting other kinds of winter squash into your favorite pumpkin recipes. Every area tailgate farmers market has at least one farmer who has winter squash for sale, and would be happy to tell you all about which varieties they’ve grown.

The crisp autumn weather marks the reappearance of cruciferous veggies. This vegetable family is full of nutrition superstars like broccoli, cauliflower, brussel sprouts, cabbage, arugula, and kale. Now is the time to get as much broccoli as you can – there are only a few weeks that it’ll be in season! Find broccoli from Mountain Harvest Organics (North Asheville Tailgate Market), Aardvark Farm (Asheville City Market and Yancey County Farmers Market), and other farmers around the area. Arugula is available from farmers, as well, including Milo Acres (French Broad Food Co-op Wednesday Tailgate Market, Yancey County Farmers Market, and Black Mountain Tailgate Market) and Ivy Creek Family Farm (Weaverville Tailgate Market and North Asheville Tailgate Market). Other cruciferous veggies are on their way, so keep your eyes out for them in the coming weeks!

This Saturday, October 11, Asheville City Market will host Organic Gardening for a special market event. The magazine is traveling to the best farmers markets in the country, and Asheville City Market is one of only three markets they are visiting in 2014! What can you expect? Lots of fun things including a cooking demo by Chef Michael Gentry, plant starting, free gift bags, and more! Visit Organic Gardening and Asheville City Market from 8 am to 1 pm at the Public Works Building at 161 South Charlotte Street in downtown Asheville.

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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