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Posts Tagged ‘Firefly Farm’

Saturday morning, the EMBE (Evergreen’s Multicultural Beat Ensemble) Marimba Band lured us to Asheville City Market for their last performance for this school year. These children are fantastic and entertaining musicians. Can

EMBE Marimba Band at Asheville City Market

you imagine having that much fun playing music as a middle schooler? The band is directed by Evergreen Charter School’s music teacher and Chikoma Marimba band member, Sue Ford.

This Saturday, Tailgate Market fans choose from a bounty of produce, including new potatoes, broccoli, cauliflower, squash and cucumbers. I cannot wait to make my first squash casserole of the year, and eat new potatoes.

Asheville City Market

What a true luxury. These beautiful veggies have NOT been heaped up under fluorescent lights in the grocery store after traveling in a truck from California. They are fresh from the fields of our local farms. They are still cloaked in the flavor of sunshine and rain, and the care of the farmer.

Paper Crane Farm

Roots & Branches Crackers, East Fork Eggs, Firefly Farm Lettuce, Ten Mile Farm Potatoes, Paper Crane Farm Cauliflower, Flying Cloud Squash, Aardvark Broccoli?, Thatchmore & Hominy Valley Tomatoes

Next stop was the Bluff Mountain Music Festival in Hot Springs. Great traditional mountain music; amazing clogging; adorable children running around; this very sweet festival was born from the determination to save Bluff Mountain from being clear-cut eighteen years ago. Since it is a fundraiser for the Madison County Arts Council, the musicians donate their time and their music. Betty Smith – the ballad singer and dulcimer player who initiated the original protest to save Bluff Mountain – sang her heart out and gave us a little history about the songs, and Cecil Sharp.

Betty Smith, Ballad Singer

Sending a shout out to the Owen Family, who played along with their son Ben. Ben Owen is only about eight years old, but plays some mean guitar and even sang lead vocals. He recently placed fifth in Youth Guitar at the Mount Airy Fiddler’s Convention. Congratulations Ben!

After the music was over, we rode around in Hot Springs. The number of veggie gardens just off the main street was impressive…here are a few that were within about two blocks!

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September 25, 2009

Dear Tailgate Market Fans,

Summer is my favorite season.  Maybe it’s because when I was a kid, summer meant we got to run a little wild, didn’t have school, and it was warm enough to swim.  Maybe it’s my love affair with tomato sandwiches.  When a fall breeze whispers in August, I resist the change of season.

I think of fall as Gods way of softening the blow that winter is coming (bitter weather, lugging firewood).  But I will readily admit that fall in the southern Appalachians is a beautiful thing.  The first little dabs of color take your breath away, and each new day the color gets amped up to a crescendo of yellows and reds.  The sky turns clear blue, and the crisp air inspires me to start projects that I managed to put off all summer.

Last Saturday, I bought my first winter squash (Annie Louise, Flying Cloud Farm) of the season.  Check out a simple winter squash recipe under “Fall Recipes”  Wednesday, I found myself imagining Elizabeth’s (Firefly Farm) pumpkins and squashes on my front porch…beautifully-shaped fall fruits in soft blue-grays, creams, oranges, and green stripes.  Gourds will soon be frosted on their vines, and ready for gathering.  Homegrown apples are showing up at the markets too, all kinds.  And these apples haven’t been sitting in some warehouse for months.  They ‘re right off the trees.  David Bauer (Farm and Sparrow) is making apple pastries.  Last week I had a huge piece of Ammie’s (Sweetheart Bakery) yummy apple coffee cake.  Bill Whipple says his pears are coming soon.  Ann Gaines (Gaining Ground) has black-eyed peas right now!  I think Anne is awesome to grow black-eyed peas.  I love them, and grew up eating them almost every Sunday dinner!

We’re getting that squirreling-away feeling, knowing that winter is on the way.  Start freezing some stuff.  Pick your basil before cold nights turn it black.  Stock up on your favorite summer veggies before frost hits.  Cucumbers and eggplant last a long time just in the fridge.  Make some salsa for Christmas presents.  You can squeeze in the market before your kids soccer game, really.  Luther still had bi-color corn last week.

Attend one of the first fall festivals this weekend, the True Nature Country Fair. It’s on Saturday and Sunday (the 26th & 27th) from 10 to 6 in Barnardsville, NC and a real easy drive from Asheville (I’m volunteering).  There are still a few seats left for the All Local Foods Dinner, Our True Nature, to be held at 6 p.m. on Saturday the 26th.  Call Karen Vizzina at 828-342-1849 to make a reservation.  Its $30 bucks for adults, $10 for kids.  During the day there will be tons of gardening & sustainable living classes, kids stuff, and scheduled plant walks.  You can even learn how to make homemade string.  The enthusiastic Tony Beurskens will be doing some cob-building with the kids; grownups can play too!

Have a great weekend,

Ruth Gonzalez

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