Perhaps you have heard about trending CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) programs where citizens support local farms by subscribing to weekly boxes of produce. But have you ever heard of a CSK, or Community Supported Kitchen? Local chef and farmer Jared Wilkinson has developed just that: a weekly subscription of fully prepared, wholesome meals made with all local and mostly certified organic ingredients, through his newly developed business Duck Duck Beet CSK & Farm.
How does a plate of organic spinach ricotta raviolis with local garlic scape pesto sound? Or a serving of Marksbury Farm Moroccan meatballs with pickled apricots and capriole goat cheese? Through Duck Duck Beet CSK & Farm, tasty meals like this are delivered to your home or at a pick-up site for a reasonable price. All members receive 2 entrees (one with meat and one vegetarian), 2 accompanying sides, plus one extra large salad with toppings and homemade dressing! One-person portions are $45 a week and two-person portions are $90.
Jared often uses ingredients from his very own farm located in Brooks, KY near Jefferson Memorial Forest. On this 5-acre property, he currently farms a half acre of a variety of produce. “I am committed to growing vegetables with no chemicals or pesticides, and non-GMO seeds,” said Jared. “If I am not growing the vegetables myself, then I am sourcing them from local, mindful farmers, such as Ben Abell, Luke Groce, Nick Posante, and Troy Hilriech.” Jared sources all his hormone- and antibiotic-free meats from Marksbury Farm and Barr Farm. He sources his dairy from JD's and uses local cheese from Capriole Farm & Kenny's Farmhouse. “At the farm we also supply a little of our own honey with the help of Julian Barnowske and her bees,” he said.
Jared’s passion for farming started in 2009 when he spent a short period of his life living in Iowa with family. “If you didn't know, Iowa is nothing but cornfields and I started wondering ‘why so much corn?’," remembered Jared. "From there I stuck my nose into farming literature and never looked back.” Later in 2011, Jared received the opportunity to grow vegetables on a semi-large scale through a friend in Bullit county. “I was selling all my produce to chefs and one day in the field it clicked! Why sell these vegetables to chefs when I can cook them myself? That's where it all started," he said.
Although somewhat new to farming, Jared has been in the culinary industry for 17 years. He completed his culinary degree at The Art Institute of Colorado, has eaten his way through Latin & South America, and has showcased his culinary art in multiple fine local restaurants, including Bourbons, Harvest, Gyhslain, and the former Avalon. Jared is currently a chef at Louisville’s Decca.
Although still in its early stages, Jared describes his vision for the future of Duck Duck Beet CSK & Farm, “I envision a beautiful piece of 5-acre land with vegetables, flocks of chickens, a couple hogs, and a commercial kitchen on-site," said Jared of his dream. "I would love for it to be a place of learning by hosting interns, providing cooking classes, and hosting informative dinners on farming and other like-minded subjects.”