Not ready to say ‘so long’ to spring produce? Then head out to area farmers tailgate markets this week and stock up before summer officially arrives!
Garlic scapes will begin waning with heat on our heels. Luckily, the flower stem of the garlic plant can easily be preserved to enjoy throughout the year. Scapes pickle well and make a great pesto, which can be frozen. If going that route, also pick up basil for a batch. The herb is available from many vendors now; Fisher Branch Farm (Asheville City Market) even has three kinds of basil starts if you want to plant yourself.
This week could also be your last chance for the unique spring heirloom lettuce Cracoviensis from Firefly Farm (Asheville City Market, Montford Farmers Market, Yancey County Farmers Market). Why so special? Farmer Scott Paquin explains you can peel back its outer leaves and chop and eat its thick stem. There might even be more late-season “surprise” strawberries, as McConnell Farms has been calling them (Asheville City Market downtown and South, North Asheville Tailgate Market).
As one door closes, another opens. Expect more and more warmer-weather veggies in the coming weeks—from cabbage to carrots and cauliflower to cucumbers. Both Gaining Ground Farm (Montford Farmers Market, Asheville City Market, North Asheville Tailgate Market) and Ten Mile Farm (Montford Farmers Market, Asheville City Market) now have new potatoes. Whispersholler Farms (Oakley Farmers Market, Yancey County Farmers Market) reports they already have peaches to offer. And the Waynesville Tailgate Market shares they even expect a small quantity of very early blueberries this week. Also find beets, peas, squash, greens, and more.
If you’re a seafood fan, seek out Carolina Wild Seafood (French Broad Food Co-op Wednesday Tailgate Market, Montford Farmers Market). In addition to fish and shrimp, they’ve recently been offering up soft-shell crabs from the coast. Just grab a loaf of bread and you’ve got a scrumptious almost-summertime sandwich!
There are lots of market events this week:
- Beginning Wednesday, June 13, customers can register for Waynesville Tailgate Market’s first cash giveaway; the winner will be announced on June 27.
- On Thursday, June 14, there will be a kimchi—or fermented cabbage—making demonstration at 5 pm at Oakley Farmers Market.
- This Saturday, June 16, the Community Garden will begin taking weekly donations from vendors and customers at the Jackson County Farmers Market for Community Table.
- On Saturday, Buncombe County 4-H will lead a gardening activity at the Kids Corner Market at Asheville City Market, 9-12 am.
- Also on Saturday, Henderson County 4-H will lead a Gardening in a Glove activity at Henderson County Tailgate Market, 9-11 am