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cauliflower

Broccoli, cauliflower, kohlrabi, cabbage, and other brassicas have returned to farmers tailgate markets for the fall. These crops make a quick appearance in late spring and early summer, then fade away over the hottest part of the season, returning when the days lengthen and evenings start to cool off. Cruciferous vegetables can make wonderful, hearty comfort food dishes that actually impart a few health benefits as well (like high levels of vitamins C and K). 

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Peppers are really coming into their own at farmers tailgate markets right now. These bright nightshades can vary so much in flavor, heat, color, size, and texture. Asking the farmer about the varieties they’re growing is a great way to learn about new types and get tips on how you might prepare them. 

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Tomatillos from Gaining Ground Farm

Corn, tomatoes, peppers, tomatillos—it’s officially salsa season at farmers tailgate markets! 

Two markets are offering special events capitalizing on salsa fever: West Asheville Tailgate Market’s Pepperpalooza will take place this Tuesday, July 23, featuring a hot pepper eating contest, hot sauce tasting, demonstrations of ristra (a traditional Spanish method for drying peppers), and more. Weaverville Tailgate Market’s salsa competition and fundraiser is the following week, on Wednesday, July 31. Register to enter via the market’s Facebook page—or just show up to taste the contenders and vote your picks.

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rainbow chard

Are there colors you associate with different seasons at farmers tailgate markets? The vivid reds, yellows, and purples of summer tomatoes, crookneck squash, and eggplant? The deep golds and dark greens of fall pumpkins and kale? Shades of spring—pink, yellow-orange, and emerald green—are starting perk up market tents.

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Julie Montanea

ASAP likes to share the stories of people who help us fulfill our mission. This month, we talk with ASAP volunteer Julie Montanea (pictured with her sister at ASAP’s Farm Tour) about why she loves her CSA. 

Q: You’ve participated in three different CSAs. Did you receive produce or other farm goods?

I received produce from all three CSAs, but from two farms I could also get eggs and meat, separate from the regular CSA box. I didn’t eat meat for many years and still never eat commercially raised animals. But I now eat some meat and poultry from local farms that I’ve visited and seen how the animals are raised. Read the rest of this entry »

In: Faces of LocalNo Comments

Thanksgiving is here at area farmers tailgate markets! Stop by holiday markets this week for your last minute local ingredients.

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There’s no better meal than the feast on Thanksgiving to stuff your dinner dishes with local produce and ingredients. This year, area farmers tailgate markets have an abundance of appetizing foodstuffs to be thankful for, perfect for every component of the big meal. This Thanksgiving, get local!

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Fall may be settling in, but some summer veggies—from peppers to beans—can still be found this week at area farmers tailgate markets. There has even been a surge of green tomatoes recently. Unfortunately, the surge actually means winter is nipping at our heels. A hard freeze that will put an end to tomato plants is on its way. So, farmers are bringing any unripe ‘maters to market now. Snap them up while you can; they’ll be gone by the end of the month.
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It’s a veritable pumpkin patch at area farmers tailgate markets now that October is here! Pick pie pumpkins for your favorite recipe. They’re smaller, sweeter, and less grainy than their carving counterparts, making them perfect for, well, pie!

Of course jack-o-lanterns can be “picked,” too. At Asheville City Market, visit Hugh Wright of Arbor Studios. He brings a selection of already carved pumpkins that are truly works of art. What’s more, he carves live at his booth and offers custom designs. He’ll keep his patch packed through Halloween, but his intricate designs should last until well after the spooky day. Vendors also sell Indian corn, colorful squash, and gourds for decoration. Read the rest of this entry »

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“If garlic has a cult following, WNC has its fair share of steadfast devotees. Not only do we eat it, but area farmers and home gardeners grow it. Lots of it.”

We talked with Anne Grier of Gaining Ground Farm along with Carol Koury and Peter Waskiewicz of Asheville seed company Sow True Seed to bring you planting tips (and lots more!) in this week’s Eatin’ in Season via Mountain Xpress! Pick up a copy on stands now, or read online HERE. And please share your garlic planting plans, favorite garlic-growing tailgate market vendors, and recipes by commenting on this post!

 

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