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Posts Tagged ‘raw goat’s milk’

Baby goats are everywhere.  You all know about Curry and Zorro, our two early bird Nigerians.  What you need caught up to date on, is the wild week we’ve had.  I use we, quite liberally.  Apart from my being around to do some bottle feeding and serve as a human hot water bottle, the lion(ess)’s share has fallen to Brittan.

On Monday night, we got to the farm later than normal to do evening chores and were met with a big, er, small, er, plentiful, surprise.  Nya, one of our Nigerian does, had delivered triplets. There were two bucklings and a stillborn doe.  The boys were quite cold, having been born in the pasture on a very chilly night, and one of them was quite feeble.  I put them inside my jacket to warm them up and went to dispose of the little girl’s body, while Brittan worked on milking Nya.  Since she is a first freshener, that was easier said than done and the stanchion was put away for the winter.  So when I got back, I used my knees to hold Nya’s head in place, while Brittan milked out some colostrum.

We raced the boys back to the house and got some of the colostrum down them, but the one little one was still too feeble to eat or stand.  We had real doubts about him making it.  Brittan slept on the couch to keep him warm and feed him a few drops now and then.  Fortunately, he has pulled through like a champion.  He’s still not as strong as his brother, but he improves a little every hour.

This morning, as I’m beginning a meeting here at the office, Brittan calls me. I answered and mostly all I could hear was a goat screaming.  Brittan said it was one of our Kikos in labor.  She gave birth in about one minute while I was still on the call.

I had to rush off of the call for my meeting and tried to call back as soon as I was done.  No answer. I left a message. For two hours I couldn’t get an answer to phone or email, so I high tailed it to the farm on my lunch break.  I found Brittan shivering in the barn with two mamma goats and 4 kids.  It seems that the Kiko had twins, a boy and a girl.  As soon as she was done, Zeta, on of our Nigerians, also went into labor.  She had twin  black and white girls.  Since Brittan had no towels or rags, she took off her shirts and used them for clean up.  She had on a thin jacket and a cold wind was blowing directly on her.  On top of everything, her phone had gone dead so she couldn’t call.  Not a good morning for the woman I love.

I rushed sped home (any excuse to break the speed limit) and got her a sweatshirt and a heavier jacket along with some cloths and her phone charger.  Unfortunately, I had to dash back to work for some mandatory afternoon meetings.  I got an email from her eventually, saying all was well with the new mothers, except Zeta wouldn’t let down her milk, so she had to feed the baby girls regular goat’s milk.  We’ll try again this evening. I suspect I will be on nursing duties tonight. Fair’s fair.

The Kiko babies (father is a Boer, so they’re really crosses) are feeding nicely and will stay with their mamma.  The Nigerians will come home for a couple days and be bottle fed.  Their mother will join the dairy herd.

Our living room now has 4 goats in residence.  Two boys and two girls.  We will wether the boys and probably offer all 4 for sale.  I’m thinking we will keep both of the meat goats since they have outside bloodlines.  We still have three Alpine does and one more Kiko still to kid.  It’s been quite a time.  Did I mention that we love it?

 

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Every night, I pour a tall (minimum 24 oz) glass of fresh, ice cold, goats milk, add some Ovaltine or Strawberry syrup (sugar free, of course) and enjoy my before bed snack.  Sure, Alpine Goat’s milk is lower in fat than some milk, but at 3.2% it’s not exactly skimmed.  We have copious quantities of the stuff and it tastes GREAT.  I can’t help myself.  Whatever will become of me?

We’re willing to share….

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Brittan and I are big yogurt fans.  We love smoothies and Greek style yogurt with honey.  We recently discovered that our Alpine goat’s milk makes outstanding yogurt.  It’s great for cooking, too.

Take a cup of yogurt, a half cup of milk, some honey or sugar in the raw, vanilla, and frozen blueberries or frozen strawberries, blend them together and boy, howdy, do you ever have a treat.  I recommend freezing the fruit, because it makes the smoothie colder.  If you use fresh fruit, add two or three ice cubes to the blender.

If you want to know more about the yogurt just email us or check out the store tab.

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In my last post about the goat’s milk products, I reflected on how much we hated the cheese.  Specifically, Brittan made a hard cheese using a Manchego cheese recipe.  It was just gosh awful.  I might as well have been sucking on a billy goat hide.

Since then she has also made Feta and Chevre.  The results were superior to the Manchego in every way.  The feta was a little goaty, but cooked up nicely in some Greek style meatballs.  The cheese gave it an authentic Mediterranean flavor that reminded me of kabob meat in the U.K. or even of an Indian Kofte kabob.

The Chevre was a surprise.  I have hated every bite of Chevre I’ve ever taken up until Thursday when we sampled the batch Brittan made.  She hung it a little longer than the minimum, so it was a bit drier and crumblier than other Chevre I’ve had.  It was somewhere between a dry cottage cheese and an extra dry cream cheese.  We spread it on bread and topped it with blackberry jam.  It was very good.  A few bites were goaty, but on the whole it was an extremely pleasant experience.

The same day she made the Chevre (Wednesday), Brittan made her first batch of yogurt.  My expectations were low.  Boy, howdy, was I wrong.  The yogurt came out a bit thin, like a drinking yogurt, but since we mostly have it in smoothies, that was not a problem.  It was tart and creamy and good.  To be hyper critical, one or two swallows had a distant hint of goat, but it was very faint.  Overall, it was another big win.  Summer strawberry, blackberry and blueberry smoothies just got kicked up a notch.

I’m not sure what else we’ll try, but I am totally up for it.

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Somebody has to do it.  We needed to test our goat’s milk products on real live humans, so Brittan and I decided the only right thing to do was become our own first test subjects.  I know, we’re givers, always willing to take one for the team.

Here’s the verdict so far.

1. Goat’s milk – it has been excellent.  We are milking Alpine goats and they have very sweet milk.  We (we means 99.9% Brittan) milk in the open air and our billy goat is on the other side of the farm, so we don’t get any ‘goatiness’ in our milk.  It makes especially good chocolate milk.

2. Custard – Yum.  Fresh eggs from our hens, fresh milk from our goats.  It’s rockin’.

3. Cheese – Oh my gosh it’s yuck.  Terrible.  Awful.  Horrible.  Miserable.  The caprine fatty acids bring out the goaty taste that I hate so much.  Some people like it.  We are not ‘some people’.

4. Ice Cream – it is as good as the cheese is bad.  Technically, Brittan made frozen custard, but let’s not quibble.  It is like eggnog ice cream.  Sorry, we didn’t leave any leftovers, so you can’t have any.

Tomorrow we will sample our Feta cheese.  I hope it tastes better than the hard cheese.  Later, we’ll make some mozzarella.  I’ve hear that goat’s milk mozzarella is not bad.

Brittan got some yogurt culture today, so I am pretty sure that goat’s milk yogurt is in my future.  I know this is all a sacrifice, but I will give it my all.

We hope to have some milk available soon.  For pet consumption, of course.

 

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