Foodwise’s Farmers Market Fall Feast Guide
November 8, 2023
There are many reasons to be grateful for our local farmers and community this year, including all of the delicious foods you’ll find at the farmers market for your fall feast. This harvest season, let us give thanks for the nourishment the earth provides, and for every essential person who tends the land and helps bring the bounty to our tables.
In the Bay Area, the fall harvest is especially worthy of gratitude. At our farmers markets, you’ll find a diversity of sustainably grown fruits and vegetables, humanely raised meats, handcrafted pies and treats, and other seasonal favorites to fill your holiday table. Hearty winter squashes, beans, grains, and mushrooms make it possible to have a sumptuous meat-free meal. Persimmons, pomegranates, apples, pears, quince, jujubes, and other fall fruit abound.
Here are some special items you can only find at farmers market and farm-fresh recipes to inspire your fall feasts.
Ferry Plaza Farmers Market Schedule
Note that the Ferry Plaza Farmers Market will be closed on November 23, but we’ll be open with a special market on November 21!
OPEN: Saturday, November 18, 8 am to 2 pm
OPEN: Tuesday, November 21, 10 am to 2 pm: Fall Holiday Farmers Market
CLOSED: Thursday, November 23
OPEN: Saturday, November 25, 8 am to 2 pm
Seasonal Specials for Your Fall Feast
Devil’s Gulch Ranch: maple-sugar smoked hams, whole poulet de bresse chickens (heirloom French breed prized in Europe and sought after for holiday dinners), and squab and quail for holiday appetizers or main dishes
Farmer Joy: chicken and duck eggs from pastured birds, 100% grass-fed beef, heritage breed pastured pork, five varieties of bacon, holiday hams (arriving after Thanksgiving)
Massa Organics: pork
Mountain Ranch: guinea hen, chicken
Root Down Farm: duck, pork, turkey
For a light, easy-to-digest protein option, find your way to Chef Sarah Germany‘s stand for her signature smoked catfish, perfect for adding to soups or stuffing. Her anti-inflammatory hot sauces are also a wise addition to your condiment collection.
Looking for a delicious vegan alternative to the standard holiday bird? Hodo Foods teaches you how to make your own mock meat Holiday Yuba Roast (pictured above) in the traditional Buddhist vegetarian manner. Stop by their booth on Saturday to pick up a recipe and fresh Yuba Sheets, and learn how to make your own plant-based holiday roast (with video!).
For veggie dishes, you’ll want to stock up on winter squash, sweet potatoes, Brussels sprouts, carrots, collards, and other seasonal vegetables from our local farms. (Click on the links for details on specific farms.) Learn more about foods native to the Americas, and see some enticing vege-based recipes below.
Aedan Fermented Foods‘ Sauce of Nostalgia (made from country miso, amasake, and sesame oil) adds umami to sauteed vegetables or meats.
For sides and snacks, Tory Farms has pomegranate jelly and pomegranate juice, Wise Goat Organics has fermented cranberry relish, Volcano Kimchi has persimmon kimchi, and Tomales Farmstead Creamery has holiday cheeses.
If you’re baking homemade pie, find freshly harvested nuts at Glashoff Farms, G.L. Alfieri, Massa Organics, and Old Dog Ranch, or apples and pears from a number of our farmers. Check out our pie recipes below.
Set the table with McGinnis Ranch‘s succulents, planted in baby pumpkins.
Handcrafted Pies, Sweets & Other Fall Feast Treats
Acme Bread has seasonal panettone, an Italian holiday classic, made with naturally leavened brioche-style dough, infused with fennel and vanilla, and speckled with raisins, pine nuts, and candied citrus. Plus, try their Lemon Olive Oil Cake with Roasted Cranberries. Saturdays, Ferry Plaza.
Batter Bakery will have holiday baked goods galore, including pumpkin pie, bourbon pecan pie, apple cranberry pie, honey rye apple cider cake, sweet potato molasses cake, pumpkin bread loaves, hand-decorated fall shortbread cookies, and lots of retail goodies perfect for hostess gifts! Saturdays; online shop.
East Bay-based chocolate maker Bisou Chocolate coaxes intriguing flavors from high-quality cocoa beans to make flavorful bars, truffles, and more, while paying a high premium to cocoa farmers. Saturdays; online shop.
Crumble & Whisk, named among the SF Chronicle’s Bay Area’s Best, is offering a special Thanksgiving menu of tarts, pies, cakes, and of course, their famous cheesecakes in autumnal flavors like Harvest Roasted Pumpkin, Apple Cider, Maple Pecan, and Winter White. Can’t decide? Try the Sample Box. Saturdays; pre-order online.
Delightful Foods has an array of handcrafted pies, including key lime, chocolate cream, pumpkin, pecan, apple, and sweet potato, all made in Oakland. Delightful Foods uses minimal ingredients, such as barley flour, cane sugar, and non-GMO oils, incorporating organic and farmers market products when possible. Saturdays; online shop.
Find Nucha Empanadas at the farmers market to take advantage of their November specials on Pumpkin Pie Empanadas. To cook up delicious empanadas with family recipes, Nucha Empanadas sources organic and local ingredients from various distributors, as well as from other vendors that also sell in the farmers markets. Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays.
Along with their regular offerings of artisan breads and pastries, Saltwater Bakeshop‘s seasonal menu has Apple and Bourbon Caramel Danishes, Maple Cinnamon Toast Crunch French Toasts, and Croissants filled with Spiced Pumpkin Caramel Chocolate Whipped Ganache. Saturdays.
Three Babes Bakeshop is offering made-from-scratch holiday pies. Enjoy seasonal favorites like Pumpkin, Classic Apple, Bourbon Pecan, Blackberry Crumble, and Vegan Blackberry Crumble. They are also offering gluten-free options in Bittersweet Chocolate Pecan and Classic Pumpkin. They will have a limited selection of pies on hand at the market, but to ensure that you get your pie of choice, pre-order now for pickup at the farmers market. Saturdays; online shop.
Treat yourself to an easy and oven-free, post-feast breakfast with Wise Sons Jewish Delicatessen’s bagels, lox, and shmears. Rye bread, and challah loaves and buns are perfect for holiday meals (be sure to check out Wise Sons’ recipe for challah stuffing) and for those leftovers sandwiches. Saturdays; online shop.
Fall Feast Recipes
Make fall produce the star, and nourish your family and friends with these seasonally inspired recipes shared by local farmers and chefs.
Root Vegetable Chips with Roasted Carrot Hummus | Joanne Weir, Kitchen Gypsy
Persimmon Pickles | Sophina Uong, Revival Bar + Kitchen
Lightly Pickled Fall Root Vegetables | Alice Waters, Chez Panisse
Fall Harvest Punch | Dillon Lockwood and Alex Smith, Novela
Soups and Salads
Smoked Catfish Chowder | Sarah Germany, Chef Sarah Germany
Creamy Carrot Soup with Berbere Spice Blend and Cashew Cream | Bryant Terry, Vegetable Kingdom
Cauliflower Zahlouk | Joyce Goldstein, Inside the California Food Revolution
Della Panzanella | Kathleen Weber, Della Fattoria
Asian Pear, Persimmon, and Almond Salad | Margo True, Sunset Magazine
Savory Sides & Stuffings
Baked Sweet Potatoes with Maple Crème Fraîche | Nik Sharma, The Flavor Equation
Stuffed Artichokes | John Arcudi, Delfina
Rainbow Chard with Squash Seeds | Annie Somerville, Greens Restaurant
Roasted Purple Sweet Potatoes with Romesco Sauce | Ayesha Curry, The Full Plate
Holiday Yuba Roast | Linday Tay Esposito, Flavor Explosions
Tamale-Stuffed Winter Squash | Donna Eichhorn, Donna’s Tamales
Nutloaf-Stuffed Delicata Squash | Green Gulch Farm
Three-Ingredient Prime Rib Roast | Ryan Farr, 4505 Meats
Pumpkin Seed Crusted Lamb Loin with Persimmon Chutney | Francis Hogan, Bluestem Brasserie
Turkey Gravy and Sweet Potato Mash | John Fink, The Whole Beast
Butternut Squash and Pork Dumplings | Frankie Gaw, First Generation: Recipes from My Taiwanese-American Home
Kabocha Crème Fraîche Pie with Candied Pecans | Ze Lin Xiao, Pie Contest Winner
Sautéed Quince and Pear Pie | Reggie Harris, Pie Contest Winner