Fresh at Farmers Markets This Week

Tomatoes are beginning their first appearances at local farmers markets.

Tomatoes come in almost endless varieties and are champions of versatility! With so many options to choose from and plenty of ways to utilize them in your cooking, tomatoes will be on your shopping list at farmers markets for the rest of summer through fall. Try them fresh, transform them into a soup or sauce, chop them into bean salads, blend them into salsas, slice them onto sandwiches and beyond!

For this week’s recipe, turn your favorite tomatoes into a refreshing bruschetta that you can eat as a side dish, on toasted baguette slices, mixed into your favorite pasta, or even as a marinade for chicken! Start with two pounds of your favorite tomato varieties and dice them into your preferred bite size pieces. Chop two cloves of garlic and cut a small bundle of basil into ribbons. Add the tomatoes, garlic, and basil along with salt, pepper, and a drizzle of olive oil and balsamic vinegar to a bowl and mix. (Pick up balsamic vinegar from Highland Gourmet at River Arts District or West Asheville markets). For an added dairy option, cut a mozzarella ball into small pieces and mix into your bruschetta. (Find mozzarella from Blue Ridge Mountain Creamery at North Asheville, Asheville City, and Black Mountainmarkets.) You can also slice the mozzarella into bigger pieces to put on toasted baguette slices from Simple Bread (Asheville City, West Asheville, and North Asheville markets), adding your bruschetta on top. Want to sneak some extra fruit into your tomato bruschetta? Try adding some diced peaches from Lee’s One Fortune Farm or Creasman Farms.


Find an assortment of tomatoes from Thatchmore Farm (North Asheville and West Asheville markets), Full Sun Farm (River Arts District and North Asheville markets), Smallholding Farm (East Asheville Tailgate Market), Stump Farms and Olivette Farm (both at Asheville City Market).More tomatoes are coming soon from vendors like Ivy Creek Family Farm (Weaverville and North Asheville markets). Find both basil and garlic from Gaining Ground Farm (River Arts District and North Asheville markets) and Two Stones Farm + Mill (Asheville City and North Asheville markets).

Also spotted at markets in recent weeks: carrots, cucumbers, summer squash, beets, fennel, lettuce, cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, kohlrabi, turnips, potatoes, green beans, spinach, kale, chard, mushrooms, peppers, onions, scallions, plums, nectarines, blueberries, and blackberries, as well as the first sightings of eggplant. Markets offer an abundance of farm-fresh eggs and meats, including chicken, pork, beef, and lamb. You can also get bread, cheese, pastries, fermented products, drinks, and prepared foods. Find more details about farms and markets throughout the region, including hours and location, in ASAP’s online Local Food Guide.

Written by Appalachian Sustainable Agriculture Project.