Marvelous ‘maters

Marvelous ‘maters-attachment0

Tomatoes are one of summer’s many delights. One bite of these juicy fruits with their tangy skins and sweet insides are enough to make a veggie-lover swoon. Celebrate this incredible fruit at festivals around the region this month

The Appalachian Sustainable Agriculture Project will put tomatoes front and center at its annual tomato festival, planned for Saturday, Aug. 10 at the Asheville City Market. Activities include a chance to get to know WNC’s tomato growers and vote for the best local variety.

Farmers will also share some of their favorite recipes and the public is invited to submit their own at http://avl.mx/xc. Put your recipe to the test, whether you hold the secret to your grandma’s famous sauce or have a modern tomato creation all your own.

William Dissen, executive chef and owner of The Market Place, will cook up tomato concoctions on the spot. He may serve heirloom tomatoes with hand-pulled mozzarella. Or the menu could include a tomato and mellon salad with pork belly. Curious tomato-lovers will have to see for themselves.

The town of Canton will also honor the lovable tomato its very own Materfest. The area’s flagship event features a parade, antique cars, music, and plenty of tomatoes for everyone.  Are you or your gal the most luscious tomato-eater in the land? Prove it at the Mrs. Materfest pageant. The queen of the ‘maters will be crowned on Friday at 6:30 p.m.

Then see how many tomatoes fit in your belly at a tomato eating contest at Materfest on Saturday at 6 p.m. The festival is held throughout downtown Canton. Don’t forget a napkin and your appetite. Canton Materfest: Friday, Aug. 2 and Saturday, Aug. 3 www.focusofcanton.com; ASAP Tomato Festival: Saturday, Aug. 10 http://avl.mx/xd Both are free.

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