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July 26, 2016

Ingredients for Perfect Tomato Pie

This Saturday, the Nashville Farmers' Market is ripe with fresh ingredients to make a perfect tomato pie. Whether you're a strict tomato purist or like to toss other summer vegetables in the mix—a mayo-only person or an experimenter of flavors—we've listed some key ingredients you can find this Saturday to make the perfect tomato pie from the Nashville Farmers' Market. So dust off your crust making skills (or don't and simply snag a store-bought one), because summertime at the Nashville Farmers' Market means Tomato Pie Time, and we're here to give you the scoop on the best finds this weekend.

Saturdays at the Market are filled with tables of sweet tomatoes in shades of red, orange, pink, and purple. This tomato pie features German heirloom tomatoes that are meaty and sliced thick, and available from Athena's Harvest Farm. Jesse and Athena grow some of the sweetest tomato varieties at our market, and are more than happy to share their knowledge with any culinarily curious customer.  Athena's Harvest Farm can be found every Saturday at the Nashville Farmers' Market between the farm sheds.

To make this tomato pie sing with a special kind of zing, we used a creamy fresh buttermilk from JD Country Milk in addition to a bit of classic mayonnaise. This family dairy brings the most quality milks, butters, and yogurts to our market every Saturday from pasture-raised cows that consume a healthy diet of vitamin rich grasses. JD County Milk always ensures your dairy products are fresh and hormone-free, and draws one of the largest crowd of dedicated followers every Saturday to the line outside the farm sheds.

Finally, there's nothing that pumps up the power of a Southern tomato pie like cheese, and the Nashville Farmers' Market is fortunate to host some of the most talented cheese-makers in the region. Lost River Creamery produces small-batch cave-aged goudas that wow market crowds every weekend, and for this tomato pie, we opted for handfuls of their oldest cave-aged variety that we shredded and piled high atop our beautiful heirloom tomatoes. Nestle it all inside a handmade (or store-bought) crust, and bake until brown and bubbling. Slice a wedge, serve, and taste the flavors of Tennessee in the summertime.

July 21, 2016

Gluten-Free Baking Class with Sam Tucker

Gluten-Free Baking Demonstration Thursday, July 28th 6:3-7:30 pm Grow Local Kitchen in the Nashville Farmers’ Market House
 
The heavenly scent of Chef Sam Tucker’s fresh-baked bread lures Farmers’ Market visitors to his Village Bakery + Provisions in the southeast corner of the Market House. When the chef’s son was a child, he was diagnosed with celiac disease, prompting Tucker to master gluten-free baking. In this demonstration, Chef Sam will make and bake gluten-free pate a choux, the light pastry dough used to make gougeres, profiteroles, beignets, quenelles and other classic French baked goods. Cost of the class is $20
 

July 20, 2016

Nashville Farmers’ Market Packed with Summer Produce

This Saturday, the Nashville Farmers' Market is packed with fresh summer produce, plus fun special guests. Sweet, juicy watermelon is now available in different varieties, and so are heirloom tomatoes, eggplant, blueberries, and sweet and hot peppers. Join us in welcoming Girls to the Moon on Saturday as well as an outdoor yoga class with Yoga with AB at 10am. Plus, plenty of breakfast and lunch options, fun refreshments like kettle corn and lemonade, and of course, fresh summer produce brought to you by your local and regional farmers.

This Saturday, you won't want to miss the Girls to the Moon Lemonade Stand on July 23, 2016, from 10 am to 3 pm at the Nashville Farmers' Market! This group of 29 girls, aged 8 to 14, have worked all spring developing a business plan and menu for this one day charitable event. Come out and support these young entrepreneurs by purchasing a fresh-squeezed organic lemonade.

Join yoga instructor Ashley Brooke Yancy this Saturday morning for an outdoor yoga class from 10 am to 11. Bring your yoga mat and/or towel, water bottle, and $10 payment for a fun and fit way to get your morning started right. Yoga with AB will be located in the picnic area patio located on the Bicentennial Park-side of the Market.

You've waited all summer for it , and it's finally here—juicy, sweet watermelon is now available at the Nashville Farmers' Market! Our farmers are bringing truckloads of the sweetest varieties—'Sweet Gem' and 'Fascination' to name a few. So get here while they pickin' is good!

Speaking of watermelon, we're pleased to announce our Watermelon Throwdown sponsored by our very own Simons' Produce! On Saturday August 6th, 2016, from 10 am to 2 pm, join us for a fun-filled summer day of contests, prizes, and lots of juicy watermelon! Compete in the Watermelon Seed Spitting Contest, the Watermelon Eating Contest for adults and kids, Guess the Weight of the Watermelon Contest, and more! Prizes and plenty of watermelon to take home and enjoy!

Don't forget that this Saturday at the Nashville Farmers' Market, we'll have lots of breakfast and lunch options inside the Market House and under the Farm Sheds. Grab a coffee and a fresh slice of cake from the Buttercake Babe or a latte and a Maple Bacon cinnamon roll from the Trailer Perk. Breakfast biscuits available at the Farmers' Deli and Grill, and fresh baked breads and pastries from Village Bakery and Provisions. We'll see you this Saturday morning for all the summer fruits, vegetables, and fun! Find plenty of parking in state lots on 6th Avenue. 

July 19, 2016

Community Farm Day Wrap-Up

More than 10,000 people came together this past Saturday at the Nashville Farmers' Market 2nd Annual Community Farm Day to celebrate the bounty of the season and summertime fun. Over 40 farms were in attendance, selling out of fresh sweet corn and tomatoes throughout the day, and hundreds of people gathered around the Edible Kitchen for live Smoked Corn Pudding demonstrations by chef Mike Arnold. Close to $1,000 was raised at the Community Farm Day Cookout, and over 100 ears of sweet corn were ferociously shucked at the event's Corn Shucking Contest and donated to The Nashville Food Project. It was an outstanding event filled with diversity and smiles, with many merchants claiming it was the best day they'd ever seen at the NFM.

The morning kicked off with two demonstrations by chef Mike Arnold in the Edible Kitchen. More than 300 audience members gathered as Arnold demonstrated a savory Smoked Corn Pudding with Tomato Jam, and enjoyed samples (and seconds) after the show. We'd like to thank Pack Farms, JD Country Milk, Galena Garlic Company, and KLD Farms for their contributions, and our friends at Edible Nashville for executing such an engaging event.

Adjacent to the Edible Kitchen, shoppers perused the free Tomato Tasting Table hosted by the UT/TSU Extension - Davidson County. Children and adults lined up to graze eight different heirloom and hybrid tomato varieties provided by our farmers, including Cherokee Purple, Celebrity, Pink Girl, Ultra Pink, Black Cherry, basic cherry, and Bradley. Athena's Harvest Farm, Howell's Produce, Hancock Family Farm, Swafford Farms, and Smiley's Farm all donated to the tasting table, and many sold out of the varieties at their market table that shoppers liked the best.

The live music corner  sponsored by White's Family Farm kept the bustling crowds lively throughout the busy day. Jeremy Holt and the Tennessee Field-Hands picked bluegrass tunes for an audience of fans who sat on quilt-covered hay bales and enjoyed the show. It was fun way to kick off the newly implemented Music at the Market program that brings more live local musicians to participate at market events.

B&C BBQ owner Ed Smith joined with our local farmers to sponsor the Community Farm Day Cookout that raised money for the Music at the Market program. Farm-raised sausages and Tennessee-grown sweet corn were donated and grilled to perfection by Smith himself who manned the grill throughout the day. Thank you to our participating farms and merchants—Walnut Hills Farm, Tennessee Grass Fed, KLD Farm, Conry Farm, and The Picnic Tap!

Fisher's Orchard brought a heart-warming element to Community Farm Day by sponsoring the Country Music Hall of Fame & Museum Musical Petting Zoo. Instead of coming face-to-face with live animals, kids were given the opportunity to tap and strum tambourines, violins, banjos, and guitars. It was wonderful to see so many smiles and budding musicians at the Market, and we look forward to hosting the musical petting zoo once again.

At 12:30 pm, the Corn-Tomato Recipe Competition kicked off in the contest judging corral. Emily Roberts won 1st Place in the amateur category with her grandmother's Tomato and Corn Spoonbread recipe, and Beth Piper of Nooley's Cajun Cuisine took home the gold for the professional category with her Corn and Tomato Gazpacho with Tomato Po' Boy. Congratulations to the winners!

Finally, in the afternoon, competitors of all ages came together to go head-to-head at the Market's Corn Shucking Contest. Cam Conry of Conry Farms gave a quick shucking demonstration before the contest commenced, and husks and silks flew through the air as the clock was counted down. Congratulations to our tiny-but-might winner (and Conry for giving some back-up support). All ears of corn were donated to The Nashville Food Project.

Thank you to all our guests who came out to support our local and regional farmers' at the Nashville Famers' Market Community Farm Day, and to our sponsors The Tennessean and Bells Bend Conservation Corridor. Without your support this outstanding event would not have been possible. We hope you will continue to support farmers and local agriculture at the next farmers' market event, Watermelon Throwdown on Saturday August 6th, 2016, sponsored by Simon's Produce. We'll see you all at the Market!

July 12, 2016

Spectacular July Night Market!

Spectacular July Night Market

We are excited to host a spectacular July Night Market this Friday the 15th at the Nashville Farmers' Market. Every third Friday of the month, guests arrive to shop and dine with our hand-picked selection of local crafters, food artisans, farmers, food trucks, flea merchants, vintage collectors, locally owned restaurants, and more. This Friday, we are expecting a fun crowd with live music, lots of shopping, and tons of food.

If you're a bit of an early bird and feeling anxious to vote in this upcoming election, the Davidson County Election Commission has you covered. They'll be onsite this Friday registering all our early voters out there. Don't miss them!

For all you two steppers and bluegrass lovers, you'll be happy to hear that Johnny Campbell and the Bluegrass Drifters will be our special musical guests for our Night Market crowd this Friday. This tight group of talented pickers is a Nashville favorite, and known to cause many a dancin' feet, so bring your comfy shoes. You've been warned!

Shopping local will be  a breeze at our July Night Market with the spectacular line-up of food artisans, crafters, and other Nashville makers. We're happy to welcome the second visit of Citizen's Kitchen — Nashville's licensed commercial kitchen/food hub/culinary incubator. Visit their booth to find a myriad of local food artisans including fermented goods by Kim's Chi, Burch Milks by Hannah Burch, small-batch blended butters by Wise Butter, and more. And don't forget our friends at Batch Nashville is open every Night Market — your one-stop shop for everything Nashville Made, including leather goods, home goods, body care, and stationary.

And finally, For dinner you are not going to want to miss the authentic Venezuelan cuisine from Caracasville in the Grow Local Kitchen this Friday night. Get a piping hot chorizo stuffed arepa or empanada, plantains, or an icy rice beverage. It's going to be one spectacular July Night Market, folks, so bring your buddies, your bucks, your dancin' feet, and we'll see you there! Plenty of parking available in state lots on 6th avenue across from Bicentennial Mall every weekend. 

July 12, 2016

Beaman Park to Bells Bend Conservation Corridor Sponsors Community Farm Day

The Beaman Park to Bells Bend Conservation Corridor works to preserve the rural character and agricultural lands of the Bells Bend/Scottsboro area. This corridor lies 8 miles from the epicenter of downtown, and is often referred to as "Nashville's backyard." We are honored to have this organization sponsor Community Farm Day at the Nashville Farmers' Market, and are eager for our customers to learn more about their organization.

The corridor is a tract of historically and archeologically-rich land that remains similar to what is was when Davidson County was first settled in 1783. With fertile bottomlands, rolling pastures, and forested hills, it is considered to be one of the best preserved historic agricultural landscape remaining in the county. After thwarting a number of threats from developers to turn the rural landscape into an area for urban sprawl, the residents have formed their own organization to conserve their community, and work with government and agencies to permanently protect the area.

Today, the Beaman Park to Bells Bend Conservation Corridor gives an unprecedented opportunity for Nashville and Davidson County to become a leader in rural conservation. The Bells Bend/Scottsboro area is a thriving community of small farms, with a number of them participating as merchants at the Nashville Farmers' Market. We celebrate the hard work of these farmers at our annual Community Farm Day on Saturday July 16th, and are honored to have the support  of the Beaman Park to Bells Bend Conservation Corridor at this event.

“Our motivation to sponsor Community Farm Day at the Nashville Farmers’ Market is to connect with people who care about food and farming," says Board member David Price. "A major emphasis of our Board is to establish more agricultural activities and events in the Bells Bend/Scottsboro area, so we want to engage people to become more interested and involved in the conservation of Bells Bend."

 

You can find fresh produce grown locally in Bells Bend at the Bells Bend Farms' booth every Saturday at the Nashville Farmers' Market, and you can also learn more about conservation efforts at http://bellsbend.squarespace.com/.

July 10, 2016

Bounty of Summer Produce Fills Sheds at Nashville Farmers’ Market

Shoppers were blown away yesterday at the Nashville Farmers' Market to find both Farm Sheds filled with a bounty of summer produce. Our crowds were all smiles to shop the wide variety with their favorite farmers, and our Market House food hall was a-buzz with hungry lunch-seekers. If you missed it, that's ok — we've  got your Saturday Market recap so you can stay abreast of the summer bounty that awaits you at your downtown community farmers' market.

If you didn't already know, it's the season for sweet corn, and our community came out in droves yesterday to purchase bushels from their local and regional farmers. Two of our newest and youngest farmers (Scott Pack of Pack Farm and Tom Lyle of Harvest Moon Produce) were sold out of their giant loads of sweet corn by the afternoon. It was heart-warming to see our community support these young entrepreneurs, and we feel proud knowing that their harvest is ending up on the dinner plates of shoppers at the Nashville Farmers' Market.

Another Market headline from our bustling Saturday is that Swafford Farms has arrived for the season with a full inventory of fresh summer favorites! Swafford and crew impressed shoppers with their vast display of Bradley tomatoes, peppers, and aromatic antaloupes. Swafford Farms has been a member of the Nashville Farmers' Market family for many years, and we are proud to welcome them back to the Market again.

Finally, the varieties available at the Nashville Farmers' Market yesterday were endless and must be given some well-deserved recognition — Reggie's Farm supplied shoppers with five different varieties of beautifulmint including grapefruit and chocolate, Smiley's Farm brought bushels of Rosa Bianca, the beautiful globe-shaped Italian heirloom eggplant, Athena's Harvest Farm sold out of their famously sweet Sun Gold cherry tomatoes, and Tennessee Artisan Honey Bar featured a limited supply of Tennessee Sourwood comb honey. We even spotted chef Tom Bayless of Bastion Nashville shopping for his favorite mustard greens at the Growing Together booth. It was an ace of a Saturday at the Nashville Farmers' Market and we look forward to continuing forward with the support of so many farmers, chefs, and you, our dedicated shoppers.

Next Saturday is sure to be an even bigger and badder Market…it's our 2nd Annual Community Farm Day! With contests, a cookout, musical petting zoo, prizes, and more. Don't miss it! Find plenty of parking in surrounding state lots every weekend.

 

 

July 7, 2016

Corn-Tomato Recipe Competition 2016

Our Farm Shed stalls are bursting with bushels of sweet corn and baskets of tomatoes. They’re awesome on their own but together they make a delectable Summer Love story. Chef (and Chairman of the Nashville Farmers’ Market Board) Margot McCormack spent a recent Saturday morning in the Edible Kitchen demonstrating a recipe for Crispy Corn Salad she adapted from Asheville restaurant Chai Pani. You may not have Chef Margot’s mad skills but the corn and tomato relationship is so right it’s impossible to go wrong. Think of the possibilities! Salad. Salsa. Soup. Stacked. Stuffed. Sauteed. Bring your best corn-tomato combo to our Community Farm Day Corn-Tomato Recipe Competition Saturday July 16th. Dishes (please bring enough for five servings) can be dropped off between 12 and 12:30 pm in the cooking contest corral on the Bicentennial Mall side of the Market House. Vie for international acclaim, social media fame and of course prizes! For more information, email .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)
 

July 7, 2016

Thomas Brand of Plano Produce

More than 75 acres of rich farmland surrounds Thomas Brand's home in the community of Plano, Kentucky. Just a skip over the state line is where he and his family have resided for over 30 years and have raised everything from cattle to fruit trees to fields of organic vegetables. His wife, Cathy, tends her flower gardens around their  home, while Thomas enjoys his time on the land he has come to know intimately through years of cultivation.

When Thomas Brand was a child, his family operated a plantation with 48 other families in Ruleville, Miss. As sharecroppers, the families picked and chopped cotton alongside one another to earn a commission for every bale produced. In 1963, Thomas recalls, his family earned $1,500 for 63 bales, which was considered big money back when a sack of flour was $5 and gas was $.18 a gallon.

As he moved into adulthood, Thomas continued to pursue his agricultural roots, and graduated from Alcorn State University with a degree in Agriculture and a minor in Biology. When he began work with U.S. Steel in the Agri-Chemical Department in 1972, he was the first African-American hired, paving the way for other minorities in the agribusiness industry.

Through decades of farming experience, Thomas Brand owns an intuition and talent of understanding the temperament of the land he works. His wisdom  allows him to grow his fruit trees and vegetable crops without the synthetic herbicides or fertilizers he feels rob his produce of their natural flavors. "What I like about growing my vegetables  is that they're not commercial or shipped — they're natural," Thomas says. "Most farmers that have been farming as long as I have understand the land and what makes things grow without a whole lotta health problems. It takes time to understand that process."

Today, Thomas Brand relaxes into retirement as a successful land and business owner and a member of the Nashville Farmers' Market family. He can be found selling his organic produce under the moniker Plano Produce every week where he is never shy of discussing his passion for the food he grows. He is most well known for quality and freshness, and loves to teach his customers about the different varieties of vegetables, fruits, and herbs he brings to market each week.  

 "The beautiful thing about the Nashville Farmers' Market is the people," Thomas remarks. "They're good people, and I've established relationships with all of them. I love seeing my repeat customers every week, and I think that shows."

Find Thomas in Farm Shed 1 chatting up customers about the natural sweetness of his hand-picked Swiss chard or the perfection of his freshly dug onions every Friday and Saturday at the Nashville Farmers' Market.

 

July 4, 2016

2nd Annual Community Farm Day at the Nashville Farmers’ Market

2nd Annual Community Farm Day at the Nashville Farmers' Market

Join us as we celebrate the bounty of summer produce and our local and regional farmers at the 2nd Annual Community Farm Day, sponsored by The Tennessean and Beaman Park to Bells Bend Conservation Area Board. At Community Farm Day, we're inviting you to visit our Market at the height of peak growing season, and shake the hands of the farmers who produced it all. We'll have contests, live bluegrass music, live chef demos in the Edible Kitchen presented by Edible Nashville, a local meat cookout, a free tomato tasting table, a musical petting zoo for kids, and much more down-home fun for the whole family.

The first Community Farm Day at the Nashville Farmers' Market was held last year in 2015 as we began our first year as a producer-only market. This year, we are well into our 2nd season and hosting the most farmers the Nashville Farmers' Market has had in decades. Our Farm Sheds are filled with all the summer favorites like sweet corn, homegrown tomatoes, cucumbers, summer squashes, peaches, blueberries, blackberries, plums, and more. Community Farm Day is our chance to thank our local and regional farmers and say "thank you" for all the fresh, healthy food they provide our community.

Festival details:

·         Community Farm Day will be held on Saturday, July 16, 2016, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

·         Over 40 Local and Regional Farmers

·         More than 20 Food Artisans, Local Crafters, and Flea Merchants

·         17 Locally Owned Restaurants and Shops

·         Local Meat Grill Out provided by local farmers and B & C BBQ

·         Live chef demonstrations by Mike Arnold in the Edible Kitchen, sponsored by Edible Nashville, at 10 a.m. and 11

·         Free Homegrown Tomato Tasting Table from 10 a.m. to 11

·         Corn and Tomato Recipe Contest, entries accepted from 12 p.m. to 12:30, winners announced 1 p.m.

·         Corn Shucking Contest at 1 p.m.

·         Country Music Hall of Fame & Museum's Musical Petting Zoo sponsored by Fisher's Orchard

·         Live Bluegrass Music

·         Local Food Trucks

·         Seasonal moonshine cocktail, craft beer, and local wine from Arrington Vineyards

*Plenty of Parking just steps away in surrounding state lot every weekend.

 

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