Turmeric has long been used in cooking for its many health benefits, unique flavor, and rich color. If you’re not used to cooking with fresh turmeric, whether you buy the ground spice at grocery stores, or don’t use turmeric in cooking at all, now is the time to start! You can find fresh turmeric from Gaining Ground Farm (North Asheville Tailgate Market) and Thatchmore Farm (North and West Asheville Tailgate Market).
Use fresh turmeric to make a delicious golden milk latte, perfect for warming up chilly mornings! Start by peeling and grating one teaspoon each of fresh turmeric and ginger. Whisk together one cup of almond milk and one tablespoon of coconut oil in a small saucepan over medium-low heat, then add the grated turmeric and ginger and continue to stir for about 5 minutes until warm. Add the mixture to a blender, along with three teaspoons of maple syrup, half a teaspoon of ground cinnamon, half a teaspoon of sea salt, and a pinch of black pepper, then blend until frothy and combined. Pour the contents of the blender into a mug, and enjoy!
Another way to incorporate turmeric into your cooking this week is with this turmeric miso soup recipe! In a large pot, add two chopped medium-sized turnips, four ounces of shiitake mushrooms, and one inch of peeled and grated fresh turmeric. Cover with four cups of water, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 15 to 18 minutes, until turnips are tender. Add four tablespoons of miso paste to a bowl, then ladle one cup of soup broth into the bowl, whisking until the paste is dissolved. Stir the mixture into the soup pot, and add more miso to taste if needed. In a separate pot, bring three cups of water to a boil, add soba noodles, and cook according to package instructions. Drain noodles and rinse with cold water. To serve, divide noodles between bowls, and ladle broth and vegetables over top, garnishing with sliced green onions and microgreens if desired.
Want to extend the shelf life of your fresh turmeric? Try pickling it! Start by thoroughly rinsing eight ounces of turmeric root, then peel and chop into small pieces. In a bowl, combine the turmeric, one teaspoon of salt, and the juice of three large lemons. Transfer contents into a clean jar, close with a lid, and store in the refrigerator for at least 6 days, shaking the jar gently everyday. Not only is pickled turmeric super easy to prepare, it lasts up to six weeks refrigerated! Use pickled turmeric in place of fresh turmeric in recipes for a tangier flavor, or serve in small amounts with any Indian-inspired dish.
Remember that this is the season for holiday market schedule changes! West Asheville, East Asheville, and River Arts District markets have all shifted their hours to end slightly earlier due to the end of Daylight Savings Time. Enka-Candler Tailgate Market will host its two-day holiday market this weekend, Saturday 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., and Sunday 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. East Asheville Tailgate Market will close its season with a holiday market next Friday, Nov. 18, and Black Mountain Tailgate Market finishes its season with a Holiday Harvest Festival next Saturday, Nov. 19.
At farmers markets now you’ll also find broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, beets, radishes, winter greens, apples, potatoes, sweet potatoes, winter squash, mushrooms, garlic, onions, 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 appalachiangrown.org.