Fresh at Farmers Markets This Week

The adage goes, “an apple a day keeps the doctor away’” and according to some studies, for some ailments, this can hold true. But does it apply to all apples equally, and what about apple cider and apple cider donuts? Farms across the region have apples and apple products at area tailgate farmers markets to help keep the doctors away, or, at the very least, keep your hunger at bay.

Throughout October, different varieties of apples will be ripe for harvest. Each of these has different qualities of flavor, nutrition profile, and culinary uses. This month is a great time to be an apple explorer.
B&L Organics and Tucker’s Garden (North Asheville Tailgate Market and West Asheville Tailgate Market) have organic and wild heirloom apples that look the part. But don’t let their appearances deter you. These apples pack flavor and — depending on the variety — have great texture, too. Also, produce with more bruises and blemishes are richer in nutrients. The marks are the effect of stressors such as frosts and hail, and as the plant builds experiences those challenges it builds up more nutrients to survive and thrive. Then all that goodness gets passed on to us when we eat them.
More cultivated fruits from orchards such as McConnell Farms (North Asheville Tailgate Market, Asheville City Market, and West Asheville Tailgate Market) and Creasman Farms (River Arts District Farmers Market and Asheville City Market) have a full matrix of tart, sweet, and texture-diverse apples. Try many kinds to discover your favorites for snacking, baking, and adding to savory dishes. Apple cider and apple cider donuts may not pack the nutrients that whole apples offer, but they’re a wonderfully delicious tradition and a great treat to celebrate the season. Find these from McConnell Farms.
In addition to all the apples you can find at market, there are u-pick opportunities across the region. Visit ASAP’s online Local Food Guide to find farms to visit for apple picking. Area farmers tailgate markets take place throughout the region. As always, you can find information about farms, tailgate markets, and farm stands, including locations and hours, by visiting ASAP’s online Local Food Guide.

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