CHEESE LOVERS, EAT YOUR HEARTS OUT!

in howto •  last year 

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Ever wondered what milk Cleopatra bathed in? Legend assumes that it was donkey's milk. I think it was camel's milk. Disgusting but for those desert conditions I believe it most likely. When you're in the Middle East you see flocks of goats, beautiful dappled Nabatean goats. But then you also see camels. A lot of them. There are warning signs everywhere of the; "camels crossing". I'm adventurous and love exotic cuisine but camel's milk? Well as I said. I think it's disgusting. Goats milk however. I can eat it, drink it and, yes, bath in it! I love goats milk in any shape or form.

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My first love affair with goats was the cheeky Nabatean goats in Israel. When I lived way down south in the Negev for a few months I was entrusted with the care of a few Nabateans. And that is where I learned to milk them. I also learnt how to make the soft desert style goats milk cheese. We ate it every day. With a hot pita that I would bake on the fire rocks with a big Israeli style salad. Chopped red pepper, cucumber, tomato, onion and a squeeze of lemon juice. I lived blissfully on that for months.

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Because I insisted that a farm was not a farm without a goat or two or three, my husband bought me a goat as a wedding present. Maybe some of you women aren't swept off your feet with the idea. Annabelle was one of my best presents ever! I loved her. But goats are very social creatures. Despite the fact that they are really humans disguised as goats they do need other goats. Did you know that some goats can actually go into depression if they are the only goat? So one became three (one of which was pregnant) became five....and before I knew it I had 60 goats. And all 60 were named. And yes. I did remember all their names. And even more remarkably; the goats knew their names!

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However before we reached the 60 stage my husband made it abundantly clear that if my "precious pets" didn't earn their keep he would sell them. Or eat them. The decision was mine. I quickly learnt to make cheese. And soap. And yoghurt. I also found a demand for goats milk, particularly for babies whose mamas needed to supplement feed them. Although goats milk contains lactose it is very readily digestible by the human body. It takes about 2 hours compared to cow milk which can take 12 hours to digest. It is also not inflammation causing, unlike cow milk. Goats milk is loaded with nutrients. And, my personal favourite health reason, goats milk is a natural prebiotic!

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My first cheese I called peasant cheese. It was a very basic recipe. Delicious. And easy. Pretty much lemon and fresh goats milk. Once curdled you hang the curds in a cheesecloth to drip. Add herbs. Or not. And eat. But with 60 goats I soon went on a cheese course and my husband bought me some fabulous Artisan cheese recipe books. With enough goats milk to fill a bath I was making all sorts of delicious cheeses. Some flopped. Cheese is like a moody teenager. Very sensitive and prone to explode with the least provocation. Wrong pH. Incorrect temperatures. A stressed cheesemaker. A rogue goat squeezing into the dairy to swig the milk - it all affects the cheese.

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These days with only my 6 goats - and of those only 3 of whom I am milking - I only have 10 to 12 litres a day. Yes that is a lot. But far less than what 60 give! Making cheese every single day gets to be a chore. And while I always love spending time with my goats, I didn't enjoy being in the hot dairy every day with cultures, rennets, weights and thermometres. These days I am loving the time I have. At my leisure I can make either yoghurt, or soap or cheese with the amazing goats milk. And some days I simply bottle it for the few babies who still rely on the nourishing goats milk.

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Whatever milk Cleopatra bathed in, she knew something that few of us today do, the healing power of goats milk. I love my goats milk soaps. Recently I've started making goats milk shampoo bars. And - wow - my hair loves it! The value of Goats Milk for skin and hair is endless. It is high in amino acids as well as unsaturated fatty acids which break down dead skin cells. Goats Milk is anti-bacterial as well as being a natural alkaliser. Goats Milk contains selenium and zinc which fight sun damage. It is also packed with vitamins; particularly vitamin A which repairs damaged tissue and reduces wrinkles. The pH of Goats Milk is very close to that of humans and stimulates healing for those with skin allergies.

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Have I convinced you to get a couple goats? There are so many reasons why a homestead should have goats. My current dilemma is this: yesterday I made halloumi. Today I've made shampoo bars. What do I do tomorrow? Feta? Cream cheese? I think it's high time that I shared one of my recipes. Goats milk soap? Goats milk cheese? Goats milk yoghurt? Goats milk shampoo bars? Or simply goats!!! What would you like to see?

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  ·  last year (edited)

I used goats milk to supplement when my kids were young, but older. The digestion thing was super important!

I do love goats!

I would love to see anything you make, but, I have to admit, that I am partial to seeing how you do goat mike soap and goat shampoo!!! Now that would really turn my head! Thank you, @buckaroo! a And may I say just how amazing you and your magical life is!

I know your life can be hard some days, but, you can tell just how happy you are in your lifestyle! Not a lot of people can say that!

Cheers, my friend! A good night to you!

Upped and Steemed

Tip!

Believe it or not your words are encouraging @dswigle. Sometimes it feels like it is one step forward and three steps back. We have huge challenges here and sometimes wonder if we should sell. But I LOVE my home. It is worth fighting for. And of course I couldn't bear not having any more goats. In the next week I will do either a cheese or soap post. But I will then follow it up in another week with the next recipe (soap or cheese or shampoo bar). My husband said it was my best post yet - he hasn't read all of them. But I told him that it's because I am so goat mad that you can read how passionate I am about my loveable mischiefs. I mean look at my naughty Emma sneaking into the dairy and having a nibble at the soap!! Goata love goats!


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Thank you so much @c-squared!

haha, I think I should come live with you for a while so that I can learn from you! Sheesh woman - the things you milk out of that farm is amazing!

Thanks for the compliment @breezin! I always welcome anyone who wants to meet my goats. I guess I've just learnt to make all these lovely goodies to justify keeping my four legged kids ;)

haha, I hear you - since meeting you on here, I have really considered switching over to milk goats, somehow I have managed to escape learning how to milk an animal, it has always felt like fondling animal breasts is wrong... but honestly - I don't like the idea of farming just for meat

HAHAHAHA!! Milking is easy. I can't bear farming for the meat. That's why our first animals were chickens and my first dairy goat. We have some sheep and raise calves for our own use but we didn't keep boerbok very long. They were very naughty. Constantly breaking fences. I'm going to do a post about keeping goats (dairy specifically although not too complicated as you have goats already). But maybe we can e-mail if you do want to look more seriously at milk goats? Or FB? My email is [email protected] and you can meet my goats on Goshna (fb)

Ok I will get in contact at some point soon! :D cant wait

Asking what I'd like to see after a post like that is going to keep you very busy.

Easy:

All of it!

No pressure!!! I will....eventually. But for this week......Hmmmmmm

Soap!

No, cheese!

Anything! Hahaha

Coming right up!

When I was a kid, a regular staple was sun dried tomatoes and goat cheese. I remember it as the best thing I've ever eaten, but I don't know where to get goat milk. Sounds like it's time to find and befriend a farmer.

Or get a couple goats. I think that sun dried tomato and goat cheese is a favourite Italian snack

I want goats. I think they'd eat my everything though. I doubt a pair would have a very enjoyable life in my quarter acre back yard.

While I am definitely biased towards goats. They don't eat everything. Certainly not tins. But they do like eating what they aren't allowed to. Such as veggie gardens. We lost half of the trees we planted. Despite building fences. Most of them grew to about 2m and a couple years old but the persistent goats finally broke through, ate all the leaves then stripped off the bark. Dead tree. They're fantastic for keeping the place clean. And you share kitchen peelings between chickens and goats. If you are prepared for goats they should live quite peaceably (almost) on your homestead.

Is a herd of two large enough to satiate their social needs? You've got me thinking super hard about getting a couple goats. Again lol

https://www.hobbyfarms.com/4-things-you-didnt-know-about-keeping-goats-in-the-city/

Looking into "urban goat raising" to get an idea what I'm getting into.

We're headed to the local farmers market on Saturday to get goat milk soap! Super excited :D

Two is the perfect number! For a small family. For basic homestead needs. As well as the happiness of the goats. You must get tame goats though or you will regret it and have endless trouble with skittish creatures. Try and find a reputable goat dairy or owner who will sell two girls to bottle raise. Twin girls or a mother and daughter is also ideal.

  ·  last year (edited)

The city by-laws where I live won't allow goats but I love my goat's milk feta cheese.

While some people (me) would keep goats as pets. I don't think most people are of the same opinion ;) Feta coming up soon....

Sounds like it's time to get a couple goats then! Lol

Wow 60 goats! I think even 6 sounds like a lot and can't imagine trying to figure out what to do with all that milk. I love your photos and your story is fun to read. I would probably enjoy anything you write goat related, maybe what is the best cheese and how do you make it?

That was often my problem @moneymosey. Which is why, though I'm sad to have sold most of my girls, I am also relieved because cheesemaking is quite a time consuming process. I'll eventually do all the recipes. But thinking maybe halloumi and then shampoo bars. Watch this space...

I'll be watching for them, and am interested to find out how the shampoo bars differ from regular soap. I think I might like it, as I definitely prefer bar soap to liquid. Also, have never heard of halloumi, so that should also be interesting.

Really? I think halloumi is the most well known of goats milk cheeses. Although we in the western world are big into cow diary most of the world live largely on goats milk. Halloumi is a fried cheese. It's delicious! As far as the shampoo bars go. It's rather strange using an actual solid bar to wash your hair. However my hair really loves it and I it's much quicker as I no longer need the conditioner. The goats milk shampoo bar is like a luxurious 2-in-1

Admittedly, I haven't eaten much goat's cheese aside from feta. I love cheese, but being in North America, it is usually of the cow's milk variety. Shampoo often dries out my scalp, which I would think would not happen so much with the shampoo bar. At one point, I actually stopped using shampoo altogether, using only water, and occasionally baking soda if my hair got greasy. It worked really well, actually. I only started using shampoo again because I enjoy the clean smell and the bubbles. The shampoo does create more of a need for the conditioner. I never really thought about it before, but maybe shampoo manufacturers do this on purpose so that people have to buy two products. :)

Sadly yes there is a purpose to it. If I buy beauty products (what I don't make) I make sure to only buy natural. Everything store bought - no matter how expensive or supposedly scientifically developed - is full of things our body hates. The rule is, if you can't pronounce it then your body can't "read" it. Most of the stuff is full of preservatives, petro chemicals and other harmful carcinogenic ingredients that is best left alone!

Are you going to make some tutorials about how to make cheese and soap for those of us who are considering getting goats now? :)

First I will have to write about how to care for the goats I've convinced everyone to get !mrweirdowski ;) But yes I will start, in the next week, with a cheese or soap post

You are amazing @buckaroo! Although I’ve never been a huge fan of goat cheese, I can see how many wonderful benefits living with goats brings. My husband actually really liked goat cheese before we started eating differently, but that wasn’t going to be good enough reason for us to get a goat. I don’t know, maybe the soap and antibacterial properties will have him reconsider 🤷🏼‍♀️

Is that halloumi in the last picture? Truly impressive! And Mr. or Mrs. Goats fixing your soap display is priceless.

Now you know why I could never be vegan! I am a cheese addict. And of course being obsessed with my goats I have to do something with all that milk. The last photo is mozarella. I braid it. The goat is Emma that I told you about before. My favourite. She's very cheeky. When she gets into the dairy she has to inspect (taste) everything. It's chaos

Awe… that’s so cute… Miss Emma needs to put her stamp of approval on it. Haha. Cheese is a tough one. I used to eat cheese every single day, several times a day. It’s amazing I could even go poop at all. Haha…

Your mozzarella looks fabulous and the braiding is a nice touch @buckaroo.

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Well Tracey Leigh as always I learn a lot of stuff from your blogs. Keep em coming!
Luv

Thanks Dad

hi there @buckaroo from nice SA, i saw you are a mum too, jon us in the discord or at @ steemitmamas. We would all love to met you

Hi @brittanjosie. Yes I've chatted individually (through post comments) to different Steemitmamas over the months. @crosheille invited me when you first got started. But I simply don't have time for Discord. I'm sorry. I haven't logged in there yet. I think my husband and the rest of my homestead (two and four legged kids) would make my laptop go to computer heaven if I spent any more time than I do on Steemit ;)

I understand completely but i could try 😉 we need Our women on steemit

The products you make all look beautiful! I can't imagine the work involved in caring for all those goats and processing all of that milk. I am sure it is more enjoyable having downscaled. I would be interested in reading about all of your knowledge in this area!

Thank you for the compliment @walkerland. It is more enjoyable although I miss the goats I sold. They each have a very unique personality - very much like children. I post about my girls sometimes. Recipes coming up soon

I get very attached to our animals and as a result we are less of a farmish-homestead than ever before. It's becoming more plant based with only chickens remaining. That said, I think we would enjoy having some playful goats. Perhaps in the spring we'll have to revisit the idea.