Why We Have Goats

I promise you (this time) that the answer to this question is truly not that deep, though the story of how we ended up with goats is kind of funny.

Ryan (my husband, for the new folks) swore to me that we would never get goats. He found them to be just plain annoying and I wasn’t going to fight him too hard on it. But much to my surprise in 2019 he gifted me with my first goat Daisy for Mother’s Day. Because she was not in milk we ended up getting our second goat Olive, then a buck to round out the group aaaand the rest is history!

Something you may not know about me is that I really, really love cheese. Specifically chèvre, which is cheese made from goat’s milk. And getting the opportunity to make my own at home was just too irresistible to pass up. With the milk we get from Daisy and Olive we also make yogurt as well as ice cream and frozen treats for the kids which really hit the spot during our hot summers.

Because Daisy and Olive are two different breeds of goat we’ve noticed different tastes in their milk too. Daisy is a LaMancha, known for their barely there ears, and her milk has a more mild flavor but still with a distinct tang. Meanwhile Olive, who’s a Toggenburg, has much stronger tasting milk that you might call “goaty” in flavor. Both produce delicious raw goat’s milk that we convert into even more delicious dairy products for our family to enjoy. Meatball our farm cat also loves goat milk and will even wait for me near the milk stand for his morning shot of liquid gold.

After milking, which I like to do by hand, I’ll take the milk back to the kitchen and pour it into my Instant Pot, along with special bacterial cultures and let it heat up. Once the cultures in the milk and the bacteria get acquainted curds will start to form and separate from the whey. After that I’ll strain the curds out with a slotted spoon into cheesecloth and allow it to hang so the rest of the whey can drain out. The dry curds then get mixed together with flavorings to become chèvre! Sweet and salty is my favorite variety to make currently but having our goats means I have lots of opportunities to experiment and come up with new, creative cheese concoctions!

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