Try Meat at the Farmers Market!

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Our local farmers have just what you need for last minute dinner ideas after work. The possibilities for a menu are endless with fresh ingredients from our farmers including spring carrots from Bloomsbury Farm, beautiful swiss chard from Delvin Farms, fresh herbs from Slocal, lettuces from Green Door Gourmet, wild spinach from Lost Weekend Farm, baby kale from Flying S Farms, greens from Athena’s Harvest, and strawberries from Kelley’s Berry Farm.

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For a complete meal, add a meat from any of our meat farmers including Wedge Oak Farm, Quarter Springs Farm, Tavalin Tails Farm, Triple L Ranch and Laurel Mountain Farm, and maybe try a meat you may have never tried before, such as lamb. Lamb is a meat that many people are scared to try, but lamb is a good source of omega 3 fats, the healthy fats that have been shown to reduce inflammation and guard against cancer and heart disease. It is also has less saturated fat than other meats. Lamb has a delicious flavor and is not “smelly” or “mutton tasting” as its reputation has been.

I’ve always thought the lamb farmers got the short end of the marketing stick. For example- the beef industry marketed the Angus breed well, and now everyone looks for the Angus beef symbol at restaurants. When people talk about lamb, they conjure up ideas of the tiny cute fluffy balls in the field standing next to their mommas. Not so! Lamb meat is a full grown sheep, so be reassured when you order lamb meat from any of our local farmers, you are not eating the cute animal you had at your daughter’s Easter photo shoot.

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Lamb is easy to prepare and not to be confused with the meat you only serve at fancy meals or special occasions. It pairs well with mint, basil, oregano, rosemary and thyme (all herbs our local farmers like Athena’s Harvest, Bloomsbury Farm, Slocal and Lost Weekend Farm grow), and there are plenty of quick and easy meals you can make during your workweek.
Here are a few ideas:
-Ground Lamb: Use ground lamb from Tavalin Tails Farm or Triple L Ranch. Add some salt and pepper for delicious lamb burgers, or mix it with oregano, rosemary and thyme for meatballs served over a bed of mixed greens.
-Lamb Shoulder: Add this cut of lamb to a slow cooker with salt, pepper and oregano and forget about it for about 6 hours. Make some kale from Flying S Farms or swiss chard from Green Door Gourmet and you have a fantastic, easy meal brimming with health benefits.
-Leg of Lamb Steaks: No need to make a fancy leg of lamb. To get the same taste in a fraction of the time, choose leg of lamb steaks from Tavalin Tails Farm or Triple L Ranch. Marinate it in olive oil or herbs from Galina Garlic and grill it for a meal made in 15 minutes!

For lamb and more, visit any of the farmers mentioned above at the East Nashville Farmers Market every Wednesday in Shelby Park 3:30-7:00pm.

Strawberry, Spinach and Snap Pea Salad

 

Spinach, Snap Pea and Strawberry Salad Recipe

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Kelley’s Berry Farm Strawberries

The farmers at our market are in full spring produce mode, and every week more and more beautiful veggies are showing up at the market.

This week Lost Weekend Farms had sugar snap peas, perfect for this simple salad. Strawberries and spinach can be found at many of our vendor’s booths, along with parsley, eggs and even the olive oil needed! To make this recipe you will need:

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Beautiful snap peas from Lost Weekend Farms.

Ingredients:
1-2 bunches of spinach, thoroughly washed and torn
1 pound of snap peas, sliced on the diagonal
1 pint of strawberries, washed, hulled and sliced
¼ cup of walnuts, toasted
2-3 hard boiled eggs, cooled, peeled and quartered

A handful of fresh parsley, roughly chopped, a generous snipping of fresh chives, and a good glug of olive oil, red wine vinegar to taste, salt and pepper.

Arrange the peas, strawberries, walnuts and eggs over a bed of spinach.  Sprinkle with the parsley and chives, and toss with the olive oil, red wine vinegar, salt and pepper.

Serves 2 as a meal, or 4 as a side, and is particularly good with fresh bread and good company!

 

Join a CSA for Locally Grown Right to Your Home!

A CSA, or Community Supported Agriculture, is a program that pairs a farmer with a customer who is buying a “share” of the farm. The farmer delivers their share once a week, or sometimes once a month. There are many ways in which farmers set up a CSA program, and you can find the one that fits you at the East Nashville Farmers Market! We have several farms who offer vegetable CSA’s: Delvin Farms, Athena’s Harvest, Quarter Spring Farm, Bloomsbury Farm, Lost Weekend Farm and Flying S Farms, and three farms who offer meat CSA’s: Tavalin Tails Farm, Wedge Oak Farm and Triple L Ranch.

Picking up a CSA box of fresh veggies with Sweet Strawberries.

Picking up a CSA box of fresh veggies with Sweet Strawberries. 

Ten Reasons to Join a CSA

  1. Support a local farm and learn how your food is grown. We all have a doctor for our health, but what about a farmer? With a CSA you can have a personal relationship with your farmer and get to know who is growing your food and how. By buying a CSA, your money goes directly to your local economy, your personal farmer, and you are helping to keep the family farm alive while having access to healthy, nutritious food.
  1. Learn how to eat with the seasons You will eat leafy greens in the Spring and Fall, tomatoes and cucumbers in the Summer and root vegetables in the Winter. This is how we are meant to eat- with the seasons when produce is at its best and flavor is delectable.
  1. You will learn to eat a variety of food  You may not know what to do with kale now, but if you join a CSA you’ll get the opportunity to learn to cook vegetables you’ve never tried.
  1. The Fruits and Vegetables are fresh  Unlike fruits and vegetables in a grocery store that are harvested with shelf life in mind, the fruits and vegetables harvested for a CSA are hours old, at their ultimate peak of flavor and freshness.
  1. Committing to a CSA will force you to eat more fruits and vegetables  By buying a CSA share, you will have access to fresh fruits and vegetables every week. You won’t want to waste those veggies, and you will end up with healthy eating!
  1. You’ll cook more  Many CSA’s give their customers recipes for what is in the CSA box. You’ll learn to cook things you never knew about and you’ll feel accomplished! Cooking at home will save you money in the long run, too.
  1. A CSA saves you money  Compared to buying the same amount/volume in the grocery store, joining a CSA will save you money. You’ll have to go to the grocery less, too.
  1. There are Vitamin and Flavor Benefits of CSA fruits and Vegetables  When a fruit or vegetable is harvested, it immediately begins losing vitamin content. Having your veggies hours old ensures you are getting the most out of the nutritional content possible!
  1. Protect the Environment  Buying from a local farm ensures that your food does not have to travel the average 1500 miles of grocery store food. You are lessening your carbon footprint by consuming food that is locally grown in a CSA. A small family farm is going to be as sustainable as they can in their growing methods and protect the land- after all, this is their livelihood and it is in their best interest to protect the environment!
  1. Get back to your roots  We are now three generations removed from the family farm and our children do not know how food is grown. Participating in a CSA allows you to connect to the farmer, to visit the farm and get back to your roots! Many CSA’s allow you to volunteer on the farm, and others hold open houses to give you a tour.

You  can find a CSA farmer at the East Nashville Farmers Market, every Wednesday form 3:30-7:00pm in Shelby Park. Stop by and meet your farmer!

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Wedge Oak Farm Meat CSA

 

First Farmers Market of 2016 Success!

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Kelley’s Berry Farm jam and fresh berries

 

 

The first farmers market of the season got off to a bang-literally- as we scrambled amid rolling clouds and rain to set up in the parking lot. A large storm blew through and knocked produce over, scattered papers and toppled tables, and we clung to our tents to keep them from flying. Moments later the sun emerged as if nothing happened! Loyal customers came out with rain gear on and supported the local farmers and artisans.

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This week we set up in the parking lot due to the rain.

There were many new vendors and some familiar faces at the first market of the season. New this year are more CSA options! You can get a vegetable and a meat CSA from our local farmers. Our vegetable CSA farmers include Flying S Farm, Bloomsbury Farm and Delvin Farms. Our Meat CSA include Wedge Oak Farm and Tavalin Tails Farm. Check them out next week and meet your farmer!

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Wedge Oak Farm Meat CSA

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Flying S Farms has a vegetable CSA at the market, too!

 

Come out next week and plan to stay for a picnic dinner with our food trucks, Four and Twenty Blackbirds and Bradley’s Ice Cream. Do your grocery shopping for the week, meet your farmers and your neighbors at the East Nashville Farmers Market!

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Grand Opening of the East Nashville Farmers Market

enfm.livemusic     Welcome Back, East Nashville! Wednesday May 4th at 3:30 pm will be the Grand Opening of the East Nashville Farmers Market for its 8th year! The market will run every Wednesday from May-Oct. from 3:30-7:00pm in Shelby Park. Next Wednesday there will be strawberries galore! Get there early for this once a year fruit that doesn’t last long. The first of the season’s berries is as delicious as that first tomato!

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This year we have over 40 vendors made up of local farmers, bakers and artisans. We are proud to be a producers only market! Every vendor at the market is the person who grows the food, raises the animal, bakes the bread, makes the cheese, or creates the artisan craft. Talk to your farmers and get to know them. We invite you to ask questions and learn more about the local producers at our market.

Jami and Russell Kirchner of Slocal Food

Jami and Russell Kirchner of Slocal Food

The East Nashville Farmers Market was the first market in the Nashville area to offer SNAP/EBT market wide. We are honored to once again offer EBT/SNAP benefits allowing everyone access to healthy food.

This marks the 8th year of the East Nashville Farmers market. We have grown from a few vendors selling outside the Turnip Truck, to a large farmers market offering a one-stop shopping venue. You can purchase your bread, meat, milk, cheese, produce and more and be assured that your purchases are supporting small family farms while giving back to your local economy and community.

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We look forward to another great season and have many surprises for you- from special events, to children’s activities, chef demos and classes, we are excited to be back with our community at the East Nashville Farmers Market!

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If you have any questions about the market, the farmers, or how EBT works please visit us at the market information booth in the center of the market. We will see you every Wednesday beginning May 4th, 2016!

Time For Storing Vegetables

The beginning of October marks the winding down of our farmers market, which is the perfect time for storing vegetables. The East Nashville Farmers Market is filled with a diverse array of fall produce just waiting to be taken home for canning, freezing, drying, pickling, and more. Storing vegetables is not only a great way for you and your family to save money on your monthly grocery bill, but is the best way to enjoy locally-grown produce all winter long.

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Acorn, butternut, and delicata winter squashes are available for storing for winter soups and stews.

One summer favorite that is still available are tomatoes—heirloom, slicers, and cherries, too. Cherry tomatoes are unbelievably easy to store. Simply wash, dry thoroughly, and pop into a zip-top freezer bag. Your tomatoes can be used in soups, stews, simmered into sauces and blended into salad dressings. Discover interesting tomato varieties at the Delvin Farm and Green Door Gourmet booths.

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Cherry tomatoes are still in abundance at the East Nashville Farmers Market.

Another summer favorite—a particularly prolific one—is okra. This African seed pod is perfect for preserving due to its sturdy structure and versatility. It can be blanched then frozen or canned to make okra pickles. It is truly a Southern favorite when it comes to storing vegetables and is delicious when added to soups and gumbos or steamed on top of peas or beans.

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Organic okra pods are great for freezing or pickling.

Finally, sweet winter squash is so abundant at market right now, grabbing different varieties to zip into purees is a must. Butternut, acorn, and delicata squashes are perfect addition for soups and sauces. Simply slice and remove seeds, roast or steam the flash, remove the skin, and give it a spin in a food processor. Winter squash is perfect for storing vegetables and the puree can be put into freezer bags and used all winter. Grab some freshly-harvested squashes these last final weeks at the East Nashville Farmers Market.

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Acorn squash is delicious roasted and added to soups.

Record Day at the ENFM Fall Festival!

We had a record day at the East Nashville Farmers Market Fall Festival last week! Friends and neighbors arrived in crowds to experience all the fun activities our market had to offer.  From the excellent live music provided by the Basement East to the petting zoo to the antique tractor and fire truck to the homemade pumpkin ice cream to all the wonderful fresh fall produce… our friends, neighbors, and families shared a real community experience in celebration of local food and agriculture. Thank you to everyone of you who helped make this community event such a hit! We hope to see you all again this week for more great live music, storytelling, and fresh, local food.

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Our fun kids’ activities were a hit last week at the ENFM Fall Festival.

Last week, our record day was filled with tons of fresh treats like homemade ice cream, baked-goods and breads. This week, expect to see even more freshly-baked goodies and loaves of bread from our vendors Creole Diva, Eat LIke Kings, Flying S Farm, and homemade ice cream, too. Fresh small-batch pastas from Nicoletto’s Pasta Co. will be arriving in flavors like Tomato Basil, Garlic Chive, Roasted Red Pepper, and Porcini. Speaking of mushrooms… don’t forget to grab a pint of gourmet shitakes from our mushroom vendor Bloomin’ Shrooms! They’re far out.

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Grab a fresh-baked mini loaf from Ms. Lynn — the Creole Diva this week!

Loads of greens in turnip, collard, kale, and chard fashion from Green Door Gourmet are sure to arrive this week, and the Delvins have just harvested a fresh crop of sweet potatoes, so expect to see those sweet gems after they’ve cured. And most importantly, we are thrilled to welcome our newest local chicken producer, Quarter Spring Farm!! Learn more about their all-natural pasture-raised chicken and view their favorite Roasted Chicken with Pear Chutney recipe while you’re at it.

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Green Door Gourmet always brings the green!

We want to see all our market kids smiling as much as they did last week for our record day, so this week, be sure and stick around the live music tent to hear our favorite teller-of-tales, Magda the Story Spider, spin a web of characters and plot twists that will have your little ones enthralled before bed. It’s going to be a great fall week at market again, everyone. Don’t miss it!!

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Enjoy a story told by Magda the Story Spider at the Live Music Tent this Week at Market!

Roasted Chicken with Pear Chutney

With autumn settling in around us, we wanted to recreate one of our farmers’ favorite fall meals —  Quarter Spring Farm Roasted Chicken with Pear Chutney. Heather Bradley, co-owner and operator of Quarter Spring Farm, loves to prepare this dinner due to its ease-of-preparation and dynamic  sweet-and-tart flavor. Roasted chicken with pear chutney is a staple in her kitchen after a long day on the farm, and since she uses their fresh, all-natural chicken and no-spray pears, she doesn’t have to worry about the concerns that come along with eating commercially-grown or factory-farmed food.

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Heather Bradley’s Quarter Spring Farm Roasted Chicken with Pear Chutney is the perfect meal to ease into fall.

Heather begins her roasted chicken with pear chutney recipe by starting a pot of chutney on her stovetop that will simmer for 1 to 2 hours. She first picks 6 pears from her backyard tree and chops them along with a red bell pepper and sweet onion. These ingredients are tossed together into a large pot along with brown sugar, apple cider vinegar, and lots of warm spices like nutmeg and mustard seed, and simmered together until the consistency is soft but not mushy.

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backyard pears are simmered with onions, red peppers, apple cider vinegar, and brown sugar to create a spicy sweet-and-sour chutney that pairs well with savory roasted chicken.

Next, Heather slathers one Quarter Spring Farm pasture-raised broiler chicken in olive oil, salt, pepper, and garlic salt. We opted to add a bit of thyme that we had on hand, and also added chopped onions, carrots, celery, and fingerling potatoes to absorb all the roasted chicken flavor in our pan. Heather roasts her chicken at 350 degrees for 50 minutes, taking care not to overcook the bird. We covered ours with foil for the first 35 minutes, then removed the foil to let the skin crisp and brown. Succulent, all-natural, anti-biotic and hormone-free chicken, perfectly roasted and topped with a fall-spiced sweet-and-sour fruit chutney.  A perfect fall meal made with hearty, local ingredients.

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Quarter Spring Farm provides our market shoppers with fresh, all-natural pasture-raised chicken.

A big thanks to Heather Bradley for her roasted chicken with pear chutney recipe! We hope our market shoppers enjoy this meal as much as we did.

Quarter Spring Farm — Pasture-raised All-natural Chicken

The East Nashville Farmers Market would like to officially welcome our newest local chicken producers, Quarter Spring Farm, to our family of farmers, food artisans, and vendors. JB and Heather Bradley work side-by-side as a husband-and-wife team to supply our market with the freshest pasture-raised all-natural chicken that our mom’s and dad’s feel good about taking home to their families. And though whole broilers are the farm’s main product, the couple also offers fresh free-range eggs and no-spray vegetables such as cherry tomatoes and okra at their market booth. Their humane approach and safe farming methods make them a very special addition to our market and we are excited to welcome them to our team.

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JB and Heather Bradley of Quarter Spring Farm pose with beloved pet Doris in front of their farm house in Liberty, TN.

Arriving at the couple’s 60 acre farm in the small community of Liberty, TN, is something out of storybooks—a winding gravel road leads visitors through secluded countryside and ends at a 19th century farmhouse that abuts rolling hills of fields for garden crops and pastures for chickens, goats, and cattle. The Bradley’s, who spent over a decade living and working in East Nashville, purchased the farm almost one year ago with an intent to escape city life and live as sustainably as possible.  “We’re Homesteaders Plus,” admits JB. “We purchase our basic staples such as rice, sugar, and salt, but 90% of our diet comes from our farm. We freeze, can, dehydrate, and dry as much as possible, and we’re looking forward to adding some of these value-added products to what we bring to market.”

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As small-scale local chicken producers, Quarter Spring Farm maintains a simple philosophy: “We want to offer a healthier, cleaner solution to the practices of factory chicken farming and the industrial food system as a whole. It can be bad for the planet and bad for people, and instead of simply complaining, we wanted to take action.” And take action they certainly did. Following the farm-philosophies and processing methods of pioneers such as Joel Salatin of Polyface Farms, JB and Heather’s broilers and layers are not only healthy birds processed safely and humanely, but they live their lives as happy, cared-for creatures. “They feel sunshine, eat grass and bugs, and can eat a locally-sourced non-medicated starter feed if they want,” explains Heather. There are no hormones, antibiotics, or additives of any kind in Quarter Spring Farm chicken. Just sunshine, pure ingredients, and love and care.

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Quarter Spring Farm pasture-raised all-natural chicken and pastured eggs can be found every Wednesday at the East Nashville Farmers Market.

 

 

Celebrate the First Day of Autumn

Join us to celebrate the first day of autumn this Wednesday with your local farmers at the East Nashville Farmers Market Fall Festival! We’ll have kids’ activities, petting zoo, pumpkins, and some of Nashville’s best food trucks serving kid-friendly and vegetarian dinner options of the grassy lawn. Plus, a stellar musical lineup presented by our sponsor the Basement East. And don’t forget all your locally-grown fall favorites like kale, butternut squash, and sweet potatoes, plus late-summer gems like sweet corn, tomatoes, and eggplant. Celebrate the first day of autumn this Wednesday with sunshine and neighbors at the East Nashville Farmers Market Fall Festival.

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Kid’s can experience a real antique tractor for photo opportunities at the ENFM Fall Festival.

Last year at our Fall Festival, kids really enjoyed activities such as painting pumpkins, petting farm animals, and sitting on an antique tractor for photo ops with mom and dad. This year, we will have all the same activities for our younger shoppers to experience, so bring the little ones to the Fall Festival to celebrate agriculture and the first day of autumn.

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Painting pumpkins is a popular kids’ activity at the ENFM Fall Festival.

We are proud to host live musical acts at our farmers’ market and are so very fortunate to have a local venue like the Basement East as one of our sponsors for 2015. These guys will be presenting a stellar musical lineup for the Fall Festival from 3:30 to 7pm: Beau James, Austin James, Alana Sweetwater, Jake Anderson, and Shawn Conerton. Don’t miss it!

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We’re stoked to hear awesome musical lineup presented by the Basement East!

Last but certainly not least, the best way to celebrate the first day of autumn is with seasonal produce grown by our local farmers. Our market booths will be displaying tables of freshly-harvested fall produce such as kale, collards, turnip greens, butternut squash, sweet potatoes, and chard. Plus, get your late-summer vegetables while you still can, like cherry tomatoes, sweet corn, yellow squash and zucchini, eggplant, and more. Come celebrate the first day of autumn with great food, family, friends, and neighbors, at the East Nashville Farmers Market Fall Festival.

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Greens are back at the East Nashville Farmers Market!

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