Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Farm Dairy and News

We have been blessed with an abundant milk supply from our cow, Buttercup. We are getting 4 gallons of milk a day. Right now, two of those gallons go to calves. Once they are weaned, the pigs will probably be here and they will get some as well. That still leaves us 2 gallons of milk a day to do something with. I had my sweet husband get my cheese press down and I got out my cheese book. I made some cottage cheese from a recipe in the book, but I like my old way of making it better. It is easier to make it the old way and it has a nicer curd as well. Yesterday, I took the cream off of 2 gallons of milk. Our cow is a grass fed jersey. Her cream is so thick and delicious. The first couple of ladlefuls of cream you take off is mounded up in a pile. My treat when I make butter is to lick the ladle off after I take off the last of the cream. It tastes like ice cream to me. I put the cream in a jar and let it sit and get almost room temperature. Then I shake it. Below, you can see the butter in the bowl. I am still working the buttermilk out of it. You can see some of the milk in the bottom of the bowl. Then I used the rest of those 2 gallons of milk and made a round of farmhouse cheddar. It is on the cutting board below. I took it out of the cheese press this morning. It has to dry and get a rind on it and then I will wax it. We will age it at least 4 weeks.
My Echinacea are blooming up a storm. I think they are so pretty.
One of the blessings of having plain old cement floors in the house, is that they are very cool in the summer time. One day, when we can afford the flooring we want, we will cover them, but until then we make do. The dogs love the floor in the heat of the day. Our bedrooms and our office have air conditioning. The rest of the house does not. Yesterday late afternoon, I was working in the office. Dixie came in with me. She was totally out and sprawled on the floor. =)
We had a family that lived here on our farm for awhile. They had a goat who died a long slow death. After the goat died, we told them to clean up her bedding and burn it. Well, for whatever reason, it got put into a raised bed beside the house. Not knowing what her goat died of, I did not want to plant anything edible there. We hauled off most of what was there. My brother Scott owns an excavating company. He let us borrow one of his Bobcats for a week to do something around here. Last night, Michael got on and totally hauled off the remains of that raised bed. Here are some pictures of him in action.

My son hung up the birdhouse that he made for me on Mother's Day. I have checked it a couple of times and nothing was in it. Well, I noticed this piece of straw hanging out and I can see a nest in there. I don't know what it is, but I am praying it is bluebirds. I will have to keep a close eye on it.


Ron and Ginny said...

Oh, oh! When did you put your nest up? I still haven't put mine up! I know... I'm lazy. :-( The cheese and butter look simply loverly, darling! What a pretty picture. :-D

Frazzled Farm Wife said...

How fun....making cheese and butter

Kim said...

I must say you are living out a dream of mine. I'm so glad that you are blessed in this way. My friend and I are looking for some property we can put a mini-farm on, my husband and kids are to say the least dubious. Oh well if it is the Lord's will it will turn out.