Why is a gardener talking about goats? Because my garden helps to support a few of them.
I made a 1lb 5 oz ball of chevre cheese from 1 gallon of goat’s milk. There were also 3 quarts of whey left over after the cheese was finished draining. Chevre cheese is a very simple cheese to make. You heat your raw goat’s milk to about 80 degrees. take it off the heat, and stir in a packet of culture. Leave it set at room temperature overnight, and then drain through a cheese cloth. What you have left is a creamy almost tasteless spreadable cheese. Kind of like cream cheese. It is lactose free, and full of probiotics. We like to mix it with my cherry preserves, and spread it on toast.
The whey is also full of probiotics. It tastes kind of yeasty. I have used it in my bread recipes instead of water. But the chickens love it, and so does my compost pile. You can feed it to the dog, or to the pigs. I do not have any pigs (yet). Just kidding. No pigs for me, not until I have a farmette.
I bring veggies to one of my goat owning friends. In return, I get goat milk. I trade with others for Jersey milk. I make butter from the cream that rises to the top of the cow milk. I make cheese, kefir, yogurt , and ice cream from the goat milk. I have been told that I am lactose intolerant. The milk from the store gives me really bad tummy aches, but the raw cow’s milk tastes wonderful, and does not bother me much. The goat’s milk (which is lactose free) does not bother me at all.
I am liking this goat thing more and more. I have been researching the different breeds, and tasting goat milk all over the county. I have found my favorite breed; Nigerians.
I have several friends with Nigerian goats. Nigerians are very small, gentle dairy goats that are the size of a big dog. When fed properly, they will give 1 1/2 to 3 quarts of sweet milk per day. Nigerians have the highest fat content of the goats, and they come from Africa (Nigeria), so they handle our heat better than some of the other breeds.
This is where I usually say “I need a farm” but I have been farm hopping, and realize that a real farm is way too big for me. I only need an acre or two. So I will say instead “I need a farmette”.