Fresh at Farmers Markets This Week

Quarantine is taking its toll on all of us. It’s hard to remain cheerful, productive, and even at little bit at peace with life feeling perpetually on hold. We’re not saying that strawberries are going to solve this. But we really think they might help a little. 

The first farmers market strawberries we’ve seen this season are from Lee’s One Fortune Farm (ASAP Farmers Market, Black Mountain Tailgate Market, West Asheville Tailgate Market, and River Arts District Farmers Market), and we expect more will be here very soon from Bear Necessities Farm (ASAP Farmers Market, West Asheville Tailgate Market) and others. 
Of course, strawberries make a fantastic addition to salads (spinach, goat cheese, and bacon are classic ingredients and all available right now at most markets). But given the state of the world, we suggest going straight for the pure comfort of strawberry shortcake. This well-loved dessert can instantly transport you back to simpler times—and, if you’re not self-isolating with a crowd, it easily portions for one or two. Riff on the traditional by macerating your strawberries with one of the herbs you find at market, such as tarragon, basil, or mint (Bear Necessities has chocolate mint, which is just begging to be part of a strawberry treat) along with sugar and lemon or lime zest. Or try layering your fruit and whipped cream with cornmeal biscuits instead of shortcake. 
Dreaming of your own strawberry patch? Wildwood Herbal (ASAP Farmers Market) still has strawberry plants available, and the time to plant them is now. They’ll grow in containers or in the ground.
Beyond these first strawberries, farmers market produce available now includes lettuces and salad greens, pea shoots, spinach, kale, mustards, bok choy, radishes, turnips, carrots, broccoli rabe, and more. You’ll also find meat, eggs, cheese, bread, beverages, ferments, and prepared foods. Plant starts are abundant, now including warm weather vegetables like tomatoes and peppers, as well as herbs, culinary flowers, and much more. 
North Asheville Tailgate Market and Black Mountain Tailgate Market will celebrate their opening days tomorrow morning. Enka-Candler Tailgate Market stars up Thursday afternoon at a new location at the A-B Tech Small Business Center on Sand Hill Rd. (Note that this is a different location than the Thursday morning ASAP Farmers Market at A-B Tech’s Asheville campus.) For a full list of markets open throughout the region, visit Find contact information and more details about the region’s farms and farmers markets in ASAP’s online Local Food Guide.

Sign Up for Our Newsletters