Short Mountain Cultures


John Parker is the man bringing the most wonderful, fresh tempeh to our market. It is cultured here in Tennessee and is one of the most exciting things to come to our local scene in the way of ferments. We have breweries coming up with unique beers, vineyards fermenting grapes for amazing local wine, fizzy kombucha tea from many local sources, and now, an earthy, high-protein bean ferment that is coveted by vegans, vegetarians, and meat eaters alike: Tempeh! Hailing from Indonesia, tempeh is so wonderful in taste and nutrition that it has made its way by popularity all the way to Tennessee. It has been popular in health food stores for years, being produced outside of TN, and now you can go to the Richland Park Farmer's Market and buy it directly from a local producer, Short Mountain Cultures.


 John sampling at the market

John sampling at the market

John was living in Brooklyn, New York when he was gifted a copy of 'Wild Fermentation' by Sandor Katz. This book has given momentum to, if not started, the fermentation revival movement that is thankfully sweeping our society currently. It explores the ins and outs of fermentation, empowering the reader to practice fermentation at home to revive its relevance in food preservation and nutrition. John became obsessed with this book and was funtunate enough to attend the author's first week long workshop in 2009 within the Short Mountain community in Tennessee. This is where John got to explore all of the ferments he had read about, and this is where he learned to make Tempeh. He also got a taste for the sweet Tennessee countryside lifestyle, and a love for community living while at Short Mountain. When he went back to Brooklyn, he built an incubator and produced his own tempeh for two years. He also started composting and started a community garden.

Tempeh is traditionally made from soybeans that are cracked, blanched, inoculated, and incubated. The result is a fermented bean cake that is earthy in flavor and high in essential nutrients like B vitamins and protein. Tempeh can be fried, sautéed, grilled, baked, and roasted. It is extremely versatile as it can be a burger patty, sliced and added to any dish as a main protein, or a side. It takes on the flavor of seasonings, sauces, and marinades very well. It can start out as bewildering, then become saught after because of all of its benefits and unique flavor. Short Mountain Cultures offers the traditional soybean tempeh as well as some unique varieties including Adzuki, Black bean and Chick pea, a Beans and Rice version, and one of a kind creative batches.  All of the beans are cracked by a hand mill and then prepared in small batches by John Parker himself. 

In 2011, John Parker moved from Brooklyn to Short Mountain, TN. He was making tempeh with a friend and selling it through Jeff Poppin's CSA for several years. The community at Short Mountain and the CSA members helped support and grow the tempeh business. This year he decided to go commercial to reach more people with his tempeh. He shares commercial kitchen space in the Cannon County Arts Center with Half Hill Farm. This is the first season that Short Mountain cultures is a vendor at the Richland Park Farmer's Market. Come find John Parker and sample some of the unique varieties of Tempeh. Living rurally, the market is John's social hour and he loves sharing and developing relationships at the market. He is full of information on the benefits and preparation of tempeh and loves to share all of it. You can find him Saturday mornings from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. through December at 4701 Charlotte Ave, and usually you can follow the glorious aroma of coconut oil to the tempeh sample tray.

Farmers Bring their Best with CSA

Today is national CSA (community supported agriculture) day.  Many of our Richland Park farmers offer both a tradional and non-traditional CSA membership with pickups at the farmers market.  What is a CSA?  Simply it is pre-payment of a weekly, bi-weekly or monthly pickup of farm raised products which can include vegetables, flowers or meats.  The arrangement offers benefits to both the farmer and customer receiving the farm fresh products.  For the farmers, they can spend time off season marketing before the long work days begin, they get to know the customer who buys their food and they receive early cash flow that helps buy seed, fertilizer and supplies to get the season started.  The customer can shake the hand of the farmer who grows their food and know how or where it comes from, find new types of vegetables or at least enjoy a larger variety of seasonal vegetables, eat ultra fresh food that is packed with nutrients and vitamins. 

Delvin farms csa
Delvin Farms

Farmers that offer CSA's at the market include:

Sugar Camp Farm

Sugar Camp's CSA Share is about a half-bushel of food, enough to feed a small family, a veggie-loving couple, or an ambitious individual every week. Memberships is May-October-November, $750, 25 week.  They will include 7-10 different types of staple veggies and we will add in some fun items like foraged and planted edible and decorative flowers, unusual veggies, and fruit on occasion.  A bread add-on is available for an additional cost each week (see website). The CSA will start some time in May, once the garden gets going. You will receive at least $30 worth of vegetables every week. In addition, discounts are provided to any farm events and on the farm store (t-shirts, buttons, canvas bags, postcards, etc.).  Spots are limited so sign up soon! Deadline is April 24th, 2016!  CSA is on sale for $700 till March 15th! Early-bird Special!  Purchase online at:

As a non-traditional route, Sugar Camp also offers apre-paid credit option for those who want to support the farm but don't want to go the CSA weekly pickup.  Farmers market credits can be purchased in increments of $50.00 with a 15% free credit added.   For instance, if you purchase $100 in credit, it's worth $115.  Credit can be purchased at any time through out the season and can be carried over to the following market season if it is not all used this year.

Bugtussel Farm

Bugtussle Farm, run by Cher and Eric Smith, is one of Nashville's original vegetable CSA programs. Entering their 15th season they remain a small family operated organization focused on providing nutritious and delicious home grown food; the same as they grow for thelmselves and our their young children, using sensitivity with inspiration from organic, biodynamic, and holistic management practices. Bugtussel offers 3 basket sizes and "self-serve" selecton so you can choose your own vegetables from what we harvest each week. The Main Season Share which offers both spring and summer goodies is 20 weeks from May through September and our Fall Share which offers many favorite flavors is 8 weeks covering October and November. Other products such as pasture-raised meats, eggs, mushrooms, fruit, and woolen items are often available at our market booth as well. For more info visit:


Peaceful Pastures

Peaceful Pastures offers a meat CSA with both full and half shares available.  A full share is one installment (20-22 pounds) each month, 6 installments total.  A Half share is one installment (20-22 pounds) every other month, 3 installments total.
Full Variety CSA: Each installment (20-22 pounds) will usually include a whole chicken, 2-3 packages of chicken retail cuts (breasts, thighs, legs, etc.), a beef roast, a pork roast, a package of pork chops, a package of beef steaks, 3 pounds ground beef, 2 pounds sausage (breakfast and/or specialty),  plus other cuts (see below!) and one or more of the following: ground lamb, lamb steaks, lamb chops, ground turkey, heritage cured bacon.
Three Meat CSA:  Each installment (20-22 pounds) will usually include 2 whole chickens, a beef or pork roast, a package of pork chops, a package of beef cuts, 4 pounds ground beef, 1 pound sausage (breakfast and/or specialty),  plus other cuts (see below!).
Pork Free CSA:  Each installment (20-22 pounds) will usually include 2 whole chickens, a beef roast, 4 pounds ground beef, 1 pound beef sausage (breakfast), 1 package of beef steaks and may also contain lamb products, plus other cuts (see below!).
Depending upon what we have processed ANY of the CSAs may contain beef stew meat, beef steaks, cube steak, beef breakfast sausage.
During the CSA season, the Full Variety and Three Meat may contain: cubed pork, pork cutlets, ham steaks, uncured bacon, and rendered lard.
For Early Bird Discounts:  They are offering that if they sign up for a full share and pay in full before March 31st, they will receive a $50 discount.  More info at:

peaceful pasture

Southern Ridge

Southern Ridge from Middle Tennessee offers a unique, smaller size meat CSA.  A single share includes 12 lbs of grass-fed meat that easily fits in your refrigerator freezer with plenty of room to spare.  You can customize the share with 12 lbs of your choice of meats! That’s right, choose from our available beef, pork and chicken cuts and mix and match your favorite cuts each month.  

A typical share would include:
5 lbs ground meat (ground beef and sausage)
3 lbs roast (rump, round, sirloin tip, chuck or arm, pork roast, whole chicken)
1.25 lb steak (ribeye, NY strip, filet, sirloin, pork tenderloin)
2.75 lbs specialty cut (stew meat, minute steaks, soup bones, pork sausage, bacon)
A CSA share costs just $85 per month and you pay month by month! That comes out to a bulk rate of about $7/lb.  More info and ordering on their website at: Special Offer -- Sign up before May and receive 50% off your first CSA pickup.

Delvin Farms

Delvin Farms is Middle Tennessee's longest running CSA program and offers both a vegetable and meat CSA option.   Over 800 families participated in their certified organic vegetable CSA program, and enjoyed farm harvested vegetables for 24 weeks of the season.  With the vegetable CSA, two sizes are available, a full share is pickup every week and half share is pickup every other week.  Each share is an overfilled 1/2 bushel box of certified organic vegetables.  More info at:

New this year is their meat CSA option.  Each meat share is monthly delivery of 20-22 lb of naturally raised pork, beef, lamb and chicken.  More info at:

delvin farms csa

Bloomsbury Farm

Bloomsbury Farm is another certified organic vegetable option.  Their CSA program is from May 14 to October 22 with both full and half shares of organic half bushel baskets.  Each basket is 10-15 varieties of produce with sprouts and herbs in every basket
10% off until March 4th. promo code *

bloomsbury farms


Opening Day, May 7th

The Richland Park Farmers market is gearing up to have a great season.  The opening day is scheduled for Saturday, May 7th at 9:00 a.m. and with the opening day we have a TON of new vendors and returning vendors from the Vine Street Market!  This is a big deal folks.  Devin Farms, Kelly's Berries, Papa C Pies, Noble Springs Dairy, Kenny's Cheese, Queen Bee Pollinators and others will be rejoining us at the farmers market in the park.  New vendors include a slue of local farmers and artisan food vendors from the West End Farmers market at the Vine Street Church including Bloomsbury Farm, Green Door Gourmet, Southern Ridge, Double N Apothecary, Little Seed Farm and many others.  Check out our vendor page to see a full list which is growing daily.  Fresh, locally grown produce, meats and dairy will be featured weekly at Sylvan Park's and The Nations neighborhood market at Richland Park.

Richland Park Farmers Market vendor3
Richland Park Farmers Market Delvin Farm
Richland Park Farmers Market Zion Garden

Richland Park Farmers Market soup lady