Shared-use Commercial Kitchen
Coming Summer 2018
To make local food available all year long, we must develop infrastructure to preserve produce when it's fresh. This means canning, pickling, freezing, drying, and preparing foods from the garden in July so we may be nourished by them well into the cold months of winter.
To make a career in local food viable, we must develop tools to help farmers, value-added producers, and entrepreneurs explore options in food processing and preservation. Having an accessible commercial kitchen in the community will create opportunities for just this type of exploration.
To close the loop within our food system, we must consider how we can reduce, and make use of, waste at every turn. A commercial kitchen facility functions as a waste-reduction zone, where farm abundance and market excess can go to be transformed into delicious food. It's where the bumper crop of green beans can be canned, where market leftovers can be made into soup for the food pantry, where all the strawberries that would have gone uneaten can be flash-frozen and stored.
All of this is possible in the shared-use commercial kitchen we are building through the Bradford INNovation Project, coming summer 2018.
food processing & preservation
We have always been cooking, canning and preserving food, bouncing from home kitchens to outdoor grills, and now that we are about to have a facility to do it all the right way, we couldn't be happier.
There are so many possibilities with a commercial kitchen. We will be preparing foods for Sweet Beet Market, like our famous garlic-scape basil pesto. We will be canning tomatoes, pickling cucumbers and freezing blueberries. We will be making meals to freeze and share. Stay tuned.
Baking fresh bread daily is one of those old community traditions that we would like to see restored. Something magic happens when you combine simple things like flour, water, and yeast, the warmth of a bakers hands, and a little fire. In the kitchen we will be dedicated to exploring this magic and its many forms.
The kitchen will be partially outfitted with equipment purchased from renowned local bakery German John's, who recently retired after 25 years of business. While we would never seek to fill their shoes (nor could we!), we will do our very best to live up to their legacy of producing consistently tasty and diverse breads regularly for our community.
The kitchen will be shared by INNovation businesses, Sweet Beet Market and The Village Café, but it will also be available to the community and local food network. It will be rentable for healthy cooking classes, demonstrations, food preservation for homestead gardeners, and value-added production for local entrepreneurs. With an adjacent event space it will be a perfect resource for farm to table pop up dinners and community gatherings.
The details of how the space can and will be used are still being worked out. Stay tuned for updates.