Fresh at (Winter) Farmers Markets This Week

It’s getting more and more difficult to tell a winter farmers market from a regular-season market these days. First, there’s the confusing weather. “Usually this is roasting season, but with this weather, I’m not sure what kind of season this is!” said Stephen Robertson, owner/operator of East Fork Farm, at last Saturday’s winter market at the Woodfin YMCA (weekly, 10 am-noon). Then, there’s the fact that the off-season markets have everything!

Find local meats, and roast them while it’s still technically the season. At the Y, East Fork offers up leg of lamb cuts perfect for a roast leg of lamb, along with whole chickens and ducks and bones perfect for soups. Hickory Nut Gap Farm offers local grassfed meats, too, including dried meats such as beef jerky, sweet beef sticks, and sopresatta. Their sopresatta is cured/processed off the farm, but they anticipate a license to do their own curing in the near future. At Asheville City Market South (Wednesdays, 2-6 pm), find Beulah Farm. They’re back for good after a brief absence last month and offer grassfed beef and pasture-raised pork.
Find fresh veggies at both markets mentioned above, as well as the Jackson County Winter Farmers Market, which returns this weekend (every other Saturday, 9 am-noon). According to market organizers, they have several farms participating with dedicated winter crops like root veggies, as well as greens that say spring. Speaking of root crops,  find options like sweet potatoes and carrots from Ivy Creek Family Farm, a new addition this week to the Y’s winter market.
Batty for bread? Look for loaves—and crackers!—from Roots & Branches at Asheville City Market South. At the Woodfin Y, look for loaves from Farm & Sparrow such as seeded rye, spelt, and wheat. Also keep your eyes peeled in the coming weeks for their newest venture: an Icelandic rye. They’re creating it for the New Nordic Table event at Warren Wilson College and the upcoming Asheville Bread Festival, but they may have some leftover for market. Icelandic rye is sweeter than a typical rye thanks to the large amounts of barley malt used.
Of course, lots of other goodies typical of regular-season markets abound, too—from jams to baked goods and handcrafted body soaps to household soaps, cleaners that is. At Asheville City Market, expect the debut of a brand new cleaner from GreenBee Cleaning. They took a poll on their Facebook page for its fragrance earlier this week; find out whether the final vote went to oregano mint or orange mint this Wednesday.

Sign Up for Our Newsletters