Tennessee's House Speaker Beth Harwell and Senate Speaker Ron Ramsey went head-to-head in a milk off on March 20 to celebrate Ag Day on capitol hill. We're not sure who the winner is, but love the creative way to honor dairy farmers!
'Tis the season for maple syrup, no matter how deceptively summerish it feels in the northeast. What better food to drizzle syrup over than a grilled cheese? Check out this recipe from Closet Cooking:
While I was in Montreal, a friend at Van Houtte coffee suggested something new, a grilled cheese sandwich served with maple syrup and as soon as I heard the idea, I knew that I would have to try it! The sweet and savoury combination often works out well and when you combine two of my favourite things, grilled cheese sandwiches and maple syrup, you are bound to get a winner. Like I needed an excuse to try a grilled cheese sandwich in a new way!
Craig Ramini left his corporate job in Silicon Valley to become a water buffalo rancher and cheesemaker in Marin County, California. Ramini is still early on in the process, but he plans on making mozzarella from his herd of friendly, furry giants.
It was his innate love for big animals that convinced Ramini to leave the corporate world behind.
“There's something about the presence of large animals that gives me a warm, fuzzy feeling,” he said. “I knew that made me happy.”
Ramini's farm will be open for tours during California's sixth annual Artisan Cheese Festival this weekend. Guests will be able to see the water buffalo up close and coo after the new calves.
And now a peek at what life is like for Peter and Louise Dunn, making cheese in France, and raising goats. Not too shabby;
Louise and Peter have been farming goats since 1990. Other farming activities such as pigs and raspberries have come and gone but the goats have stayed. The herd, begun with 35 females and two males from the UK, has now grown to around 70. The Dunns have always farmed organically as a matter of strong principle, whether certified or not. In 2000, when the dairy they were supplying was planning organic lines, they re-registered for organic certification. The dairy was taken over and the plans disappeared in smoke but happily another dairy came along who now buy most of the Dunns’ milk for organic goats’ cheese.
The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) has published a scientific opinion concluding that protein from goat’s milk is a suitable protein source for infant and follow-on formulae, provided the final product complies with compositional criteria.
To prove their point in a recent dispute over the proportion of goat's, cow's, and sheep's milk in halloumi, Cypriot dairy farmers spilled 15 tons of unused milk outside of the presidential palace this past Monday. Halloumi-producing factories are refusing to accept the farmers' milk until the dispute between the Cypriot government and the EU Commission is solved, leaving tons of milk to spoil.
The 1985 prototype states that the majority of milk used in halloumi must be goat and/or sheep milk, though farmers said this has never been followed - “under the state’s tolerance” - and that the difference has been made up with cow’s milk.
Scientist in Kashmir have successfully cloned a rare breed of cashmere goat, highly valued for its wool. The Washington Post has the story:
The March 9 birth of female kid “Noori,” which means “light” in Arabic, could spark breeding programs across the region and mass production of the high-priced wool, said lead project scientist Dr. Riaz Ahmad Shah, a veterinarian in the animal biotechnology center of Sher-i-Kashmir University.
Cashmere wool, particularly made into shawls, is a major source of income for Kashmir, generating about $80 million a year for the Indian-controlled portion of the disputed mountain state. A shawl can cost $200 in Kashmir and much more when sold abroad — a boon given the average salary of $800 a year for Kashmir’s 10.2 million people.
Against all odds, Anat and Daniel Kornmehl started a goat dairy in Israel's Negev Desert 14 years ago. With an aim to improve the land, and conditions for their animals they've worked with experts to find a "green" way to dispose of the high-fat-content waste water produced by the dairy. Adam Dickter has the story:
The solution they found involves an 18-foot square artificial wetland. Waste water is filtered through plants, then through a layer of coarse sand and another layer of gravel, all about two feet high. The emerging water is then collected and used, for now, to water shrubbery on the grounds.
When the four-year-old project is expanded next year, the Kornmehls hope the recycled water will be used to irrigate the grazing field for their herd. It will not be clean enough, however, for human or animal consumption.
Great article from Pressdemocrat about Vella Cheese Company post Ig Vella. Looks like the fourth generation of the family is grabbing the reins with ease:
“You know, it’s not like I closed a lucrative law practice last June and decided to jump into making cheese. Dad had congestive heart failure in October 2009, and he never came back full time after that. So we had all that time before he died to figure things out. It takes 13 people to run this business. Our head cheesemaker, Charlie Malkassian, has been here 32 years. My son, Gabriel Luddy, in training to be a cheesemaker, has been here 11 years. And I’ve been here 31 years.”
Another great video from Food52, who paid a visit to these beer geniuses, and learned a bit about home brewing:
We cook from scratch a lot here at Food52 -- yogurt, granola, sriracha, ricotta, bread -- but before we met Stephen Valand and Erica Shea from Brooklyn Brew Shop, we'd never considered making our own beer.
It turns out that it's easy with their beer making kits, which contain everything you need but a stock pot, a strainer, and a funnel. The box comes with a gorgeous one-gallon glass fermenting jug, an airlock with plastic tubing to siphon beer into bottles, and one of the Brooklyn Brew Shop's custom grain mixes that have all the grain, hops, yeast, and spices you need to make your own delicious brew.