Monday, June 28, 2010

Land of Milk and Honey

It's kind of like that PBS show "Connections" with James Burke, whose comb-over was third in line to that of "Guns, Germs and Steel" author Jared Diamond and former Portland TV newsman Boyd Levet back in the Mt. St. Helens days. But I digress.

The connection I'm talking about is the one between the price of farm-produced raw milk and the vacation schedules of middle-class Portlanders. Got it? Well, as explained by Chrissie Zaerpoor of Kookoolan Farms, it has to do with the reduced demand for the milk her cows produce due to the fact that many of us city folk go on vacation in July just as the cows' production is peaking. This makes for a glut of milk for not enough buyers, which causes her to lower her prices to compensate.

So if you're a lover of raw milk, you can make an appointment to pick up a gallon or ten from her farm store in Yamhill. And what to do with all that milk? Well, for starters, if you're the DIY type she has local cheesemakers teach classes at the farm (and sells cheesemaking supplies, as well), and she also has recipes for making your own butter and ice cream from the milk (see below).

Also, if you're feeling particularly motivated and you're interested in starting your own herd, she's selling two of her best producers, Token and Glitter, to good homes. For milk or the cows it comes from, get in touch by e-mail or by phone at 503-730-7535.

Farmer Chrissie's Best Ice Cream

To make ice cream, combine 3 cups cream; 1/2 cup sweetener such as sugar, Rapidura, honey or maple syrup; four raw egg yolks; and 1 tsp arrowroot powder in a blender. Add whatever flavoring you desire, such as 1 tsp. vanilla extract. Then process in your ice cream maker. Variation: replace sweetener and flavoring with one jar of Ayers Creek berry jam. Homemade ice cream keeps well in the freezer for up to a year. 

Farmer Chrissie's Best Butter

To make butter, let cream set out at room temperature for about six hours to warm up and ripen, then mix it in your food processor until butter comes together in granules. Drain off the buttermilk for use in biscuits or pancakes. Rinse the butter granules in ice-cold water until the water runs clear, then use a damp towel to press out the excess water. Salt the butter if desired, roll into logs, wrap in clear plastic wrap and freeze almost indefinitely. Raw butter spoils very quickly in your refrigerator or at room temperature because hand-processing does not remove all the casein from the butterfat, so keep frozen until ready to use.


TomInVV said...

James Burke has finally let it go:

but who would have thunk--churning butter in a food processor.

kab said...

My thought exactly…along with, "Holy crap, I could do THAT!"