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Local Thanksgiving Inspiration

In the Southern Appalachians it’s easy to fill your Thanksgiving table with a cornucopia of local food! There are many holiday tailgate markets open this week where you can shop for your feast.  Lauren Hoffman, one of ASAP’s communications interns, wants to share some locally-inspired dish ideas that incorporate ingredients from these markets for your holiday menu!


Pumpkins and Lard

At the French Broad Food Co-op Wednesday Tailgate Market, open Wednesday, November 26, from 2 pm-6 pm, you can purchase Pure Leaf Lard from Beulah Farms to make a delicious pie crust or flaky biscuits. Then stop by Happy Shepherd Farm to buy the Candy Roaster Squash to make sweet and creamy pumpkin pie filling.


Pure Leaf Lard Pie Crust


  • 3 cups all-purpose unbleached flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/4 cups lard, cold and coarsely chopped
  • 1 egg
  • 5 1/2 tablespoons water
  • 1 teaspoon vinegar


  1. In a large bowl, combine the flour and salt.
  2. Using a pastry blender, cut in the lard until the mixture is very fine.
  3. In a separate bowl, beat together the egg, water, and vinegar.
  4. Make a small well in the flour mixture and add the liquid; mix just until the dough comes together in a ball.
  5. Divide the dough into 4 equal pieces and flatten into disks; wrap individually in plastic and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes before rolling.
  6. To make a double-crust pie with a solid top crust, roll out 2 disks of dough about 1 inch larger than the pie plate. Fit one crust into the bottom of the pie plate. Fill the pie with the desired filling; slightly moisten the edge of the bottom crust. Take the second crust, fold it in half, gently place it over the pie filling, and unfold, centering it on the pie plate; press the edges into the bottom crust to seal. Trim the excess dough to leave an overhang of about 3/4 inch. Crimp or flute the edges with your fingers. To allow steam to escape, gently prick the top crust with a fork several times or slash vents with a sharp knife.




At the River Arts District Farmers Market, on Wednesday, November 26, from 2 pm- 6 pm, you can find parsnips from Flying Cloud Farm to roast in this delicious dish.


Roasted Parsnips with Mint


  • 2 pounds parsnips
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 7 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
  • 6 green onions, cut into 3-inch pieces
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped fresh mint
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped shallots
  • 3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 1 garlic clove, minced


  1. Preheat oven to 400°. Peel parsnips, and cut into 2- to 3-inch-long pieces; cut each lengthwise into 1/3-inch-thick strips. Place in a lightly greased 15- x 10-inch pan; toss with pepper, 2 Tbsp. olive oil, and 1/2 tsp. kosher salt.
  2. Bake at 400° for 25 minutes. Add green onions; toss. Bake 10 to 15 more minutes or until parsnips are tender and browned. Transfer to a serving platter.
  3. Whisk together mint, next 3 ingredients, and remaining 1/2 tsp. salt until blended. Gradually add remaining 5 Tbsp. olive oil in a slow, steady stream, whisking until smooth. Spoon over vegetables. Serve immediately.


Sweet Potatoes

At the West Asheville Tailgate Market, on Tuesday, November 25, from 2:30 pm -5:30 pm, you can find sweet potatoes for your casserole from Paper Crane Farm and Blue Meadow Farm. 



Sweet Potato Casserole


  • 3 cups mashed sweet potatoes
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup melted butter
  • Topping:
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup flour
  • 1/3 cup melted butter
  • 1 cup chopped pecans


  1. Combine first 6 ingredients. Blend thoroughly and pour into a buttered 1 1/2 to 2-quart casserole dish.
  2. Mix remaining ingredients together and sprinkle over top.
  3. Bake at 350° for 30 to 40 minutes, until hot and browned.




At the Weaverville Tailgate Market, on Wednesday, November 26, from 2 pm -6 pm, you can find collards for this delicious side-dish from Fork Mountain Farm this week!



Creamed Collards


  • 4 1/2 pounds fresh collard greens
  • 1 pound bacon, chopped
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 2 large onions, diced
  • 3 cups chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper


  1. Rinse collard greens. Trim and discard thick stems from bottom of collard green leaves (about 2 inches); coarsely chop collards.
  2. Cook bacon, in batches, in an 8-qt. stock pot over medium heat 10 to 12 minutes or until crisp. Remove bacon with a slotted spoon, and drain on paper towels, reserving drippings in stock pot. Reserve 14 cup bacon.
  3. Add butter and onions to hot drippings in skillet. Sauté onion 8 minutes or until tender. Add collards, in batches, and cook, stirring occasionally, 5 minutes or until wilted. Stir in chicken broth, next 3 ingredients, and remaining bacon.
  4. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low, and cook, stirring occasionally, 15 minutes or to desired degree of tenderness. Drain collards, reserving 1 cup liquid.
  5. Stir in Béchamel Sauce. Stir in reserved cooking liquid, 1/4 cup at a time, to desired consistency. Transfer to a serving dish, and sprinkle with reserved 1/4 cup bacon.



There is still time to purchase a local turkey to star in your Thanksgiving feast this year!

Refer to ASAP’s article for more information!



No need to stay home this winter! There are many tailgate markets still operating. Check out our list of winter markets open for the season.

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