Fresh at Farmers Markets This Week

Locally grown rice from Lee’s One Fortune Farm has arrived at markets this week! While rice is not commonly grown in Southern Appalachia, and generally grown in few areas of the United States, the Lees’ use of nearby streams to irrigate their rice paddies creates the submerged conditions needed to grow their rice. Red rice and sweet sticky rice are now available from the Lees, and they’ll soon offer more varieties like purple and brown rice at markets for you to enjoy! Find Lee’s One Fortune Farm at Asheville City, Black Mountain, West Asheville, River Arts District, and East Asheville markets. 

Not only is red rice rich in fiber, iron, and antioxidants, its unique, slightly sweet and nutty flavor makes it a wonderful base for an easy rice bowl. Chue Lee recommends a one-to-one ratio—one cup of water for one cup of rice. We suggest adding a handful of shiitake mushrooms sautéed in soy sauce from Black Trumpet Farm, shelled edamame beans from Flying Cloud Farm (both at the River Arts District Farmers Market and North Asheville Tailgate Market), half of a julienned carrot, and a thinly sliced radish. Swap these veggie toppings according to your own preference, or what is available seasonally. Top off your rice bowl with some chopped chives from Olivette Farms (Asheville City Market), a halved hard boiled egg, and a sprinkle of sesame seeds. One of our favorite additions to rice bowls is kimchi from Sweet Brine’d or Serotonin Ferments! You can find both these vendors at Asheville City Market. 

Craving something sweet? Rice can be a dessert too! This classic combination of coconut milk, sticky rice, and sweet ripe mango is a popular Thai dish that can easily be made at home. To make this time-honored dessert, start by rinsing one and a half cups of sweet sticky rice from Lee’s One fortune Farm until the water runs clear, then soak in cold water overnight. Drain the rice in a sieve after it is done soaking, and set the sieve over a large, deep saucepan of simmering water (the sieve should not be touching the water). Cover the sieve with a kitchen towel and lid, then let your rice steam for 30-40 minutes. While the rice is cooking, in a separate saucepan, add one cup of coconut milk, one third cup of sugar, and a pinch of salt, then bring to a boil. Stir until sugar is dissolved, then remove from heat. Transfer cooked rice to a bowl and stir in the coconut milk mixture, then let sit for 30 minutes until the milk is absorbed. In a small pan, boil one third cup of coconut milk and three tablespoons of sugar, continuously stirring for a few minutes, then chill until cool and slightly thickened. Serve your desired amount of sticky rice by drizzling some of the remaining coconut sauce and sprinkling on sesame seeds. Enjoy your sweet sticky rice with freshly sliced mango, or pick up some of the last of this season’s peaches from farmers markets this week to serve with! 

At farmers markets now you’ll also find apples, pears, figs, melons, okra, tomatoes, peppers, eggplant, squash, garlic, potatoes, beets, leafy greens, mushrooms, fresh herbs and much more. Markets are stocked with a variety of meats, cheese, rice, pasta, bread, drinks, and prepared foods. Find more details about farms and markets throughout the region in ASAP’s online Local Food Guide at

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