Unique, home-grown finds from WV’s farmers markets
Stop in any farmers market in West Virginia, and you’ll find a beautiful variety of fresh fruits, vegetables and other products. But look a bit deeper and you may discover some unique finds:
1. West Virginia 63 tomato
The West Virginia 63 tomato, a blight-resistant tomato, was unveiled in 1963 at part of the state’s centennial celebration. It’s a good canning tomato or slicing tomato. You can find it at the West Virginia University greenhouse.
These oniony, garlicky stinkers are highly sought after during late April to early June. Richwood is the self-proclaimed ramp capital of the world, and you can spot bundles for sale across the state.
The wild spring onion adds an extra kick of flavor to any dish, and has even been made appearances in some of the country’s finest restaurants.
3. Buckwheat Flour
Get homemade buckwheat flour freshly churned out in and around Preston County, or at their Buckwheat Festival. You can use the flour, which is gluten-free, for breads, muffins and, of course, delicious buckwheat cakes!
4. Grimes Golden and Golden Delicious Apples
West Virginia is the home of 2 types of apples: the Grimes Golden and the Golden Delicious. Find bushels of the sweet, juicy fruits in markets all throughout the state. These 2, among many others, are up for grabs in the fall.
You can find this mango-like fruit across Appalachia, but West Virginia even has a town named in its honor. The pale yellow tropical treat usually hangs from the wild trees, but it pops up at local markets, too— especially in the form of tasty baked goods!
6. Black Walnuts
The black walnut, which has a festival devoted to it in Spencer, has a natural and distinctive flavor that lends itself to ice cream, cakes and cookies. Buy them by the pound in-shell or shelled!
These value-added snacks don’t come right from the ground, but they do originate in North Central West Virginia’s backyard. Bakers bring baskets brimming with the treat to the local markets. Choose your favorite: plain, cheese or hot pepper cheese!
8. Goat Milk Soap
Farmers who raise dairy goats also put that protein-rich milk to work in handcrafted soaps. These soaps, which are especially good for people with allergies, usually have essential oils, oatmeal and other gentle ingredients. Lavender and chamomile are some of the local favorite scents.
What is your favorite West Virginia market find?
This post was last updated on July 24, 2020