What to do with goat’s milk? You can substitute it 100% for anything you make with regular cow’s milk. It will be richer and creamier than milk bought at the grocery store, because
- It’s fresh! Our pure raw goat’s milk has not been transported hundreds of miles in a container truck before you buy it. In fact, you can meet the goats your milk came from last night or this morning.
- It’s not pasteurized. We do not pasteurize our milk in order to preserve all the healthful goodness found in raw milk. It also has a fresher taste, because it has not been cooked. Because we do not pasteurize, we take pains to be sure our goats are healthy. We also do our best to maintain the highest standards of cleanliness in producing our milk. At the same time, be aware that we milk our goats by hand. The size of our herd does not justify investing in machines for milking or a stainless steel bulk tank.
- It’s naturally homogenized. The cream does not separate from goat’s milk as easily as with cow’s milk, because the fat globules are smaller and more fragile. This means it is easier to digest and less likely to cause stomach problems—that’s why so many folks with milk allergies are able to drink goat’s milk. Being naturally homogenized means all the problems associated with artificial homogenization (chiefly the release of the enzyme Xanthine oxidase, which makes milk taste rancid, and also scars your arteries) are avoided. Goat’s milk is normally 3-5% fat content, and we have only Nubians, famous for their high butterfat, great-tasting milk.
Please be aware that goat’s milk may not taste the same as cow’s milk. Many people actually prefer it! It should always taste like good milk, though, and if it tastes bad, don’t drink it.
Here are a few of my favorite recipes using goat’s milk:
Old-Fashioned Vanilla Ice Cream
(Makes 2 quarts)
- 1 cup plus 2 Tbsp. sugar
- ¼ cup unbleached all-purpose flour
- ¼ tsp. salt
- 2 ½ cups goat’s milk
- 2 large eggs, beaten
- 2 cups heavy cream (you can use store-bought cream if you wish, or separate it in advance from your fresh goat’s milk)
- 1 Tbsp. pure vanilla extract
Combine the sugar, flour, and salt in a saucepan and gradually stir in the milk. Cook over medium heat until thickened, stirring constantly (this will take about 15 minutes). Gradually stir about 1 cup of the hot milk mixture into the beaten eggs to temper them and avoid curdling. Then add to the hot milk mixture and cook for one minute, then remove from the heat. Cool and then refrigerate for at least two hours. Mix together the cream and vanilla and stir into the chilled mixture, combining them thoroughly. Place mixture in an ice cream freezer and follow the instructions.
For a real treat, place the soft ice cream between two of your favorite homemade cookies for a delicious ice cream sandwich.
Cookies and Cream: Crumble about 15 Oreo cookies into the above mixture before freezing.
Strawberry: Add a thawed package of frozen strawberries to the mixture before freezing.
Coffee: Add two tablespoons instant coffee when adding the flour, sugar, and salt.
Peppermint: Add one cup of crushed peppermint candies before freezing.
Fresh Chevre (Goat Cheese)
(Makes about four or five 8-oz. packages)
- 1 gallon of fresh goat’s milk
- 1 package of direct-set Chevre culture (I use the one from New England Cheesemaking Supply)
- Sea or kosher salt to taste
- Herbs, if desired
Heat the goat’s milk to 86⁰ F. in a stock pot or Dutch oven on the stove (if the milk is really fresh, you don’t even have to do this part). Remove pot from heat and sprinkle the culture over the milk. Cover and let it sit for about two minutes, so the culture can hydrate, and then stir it in thoroughly using an up-and-down motion. Cover the pot and set it aside for 12-18 hours or overnight at room temperature (at least 72⁰ F.). When set, remove the lid and carefully ladle the curd into clean, prepared molds or a colander lined with butter muslin. You can add salt to taste or any herbs you wish at this time, mixing them in well with your hands. Place the filled molds on a rack over a pan to drain and empty out the whey that accumulates from time to time. If using muslin, hang to dry for at least 4 hours (6-12 hours is recommended). If the muslin gets clogged and isn’t draining, scrape the outside with a spoon to open the pores in the cloth. I especially like to use Herbs de Provence, sun-dried tomato and chives, garlic and onion, or thyme herb mixtures but it’s great plain, too. Enjoy! Put this out with some homemade crackers (or even some Ritz) and watch it disappear—I hope you’re ready for lots of compliments and people wanting your recipe!
Goat’s Milk Yogurt
(Makes about 32 oz.)
- ½ gallon fresh goat’s milk
- 1 cup nonfat dried milk crystals
- Yogurt culture or 3 oz. fresh, active culture plain yogurt
Melt an ice cube in the bottom of your stock pot (this will help prevent your milk from scorching). Add the goat’s milk and nonfat dried milk crystals and heat on medium to 185⁰ F. Be sure to stir often, to prevent the milk from scorching. When it reaches 185⁰, reduce the heat and maintain this temperature for 20 minutes (this is necessary to change the nature of the milk proteins, otherwise your yogurt will not set up). Remove pot from heat and place in a water bath in the sink to cool the milk as quickly as possible to 115-120⁰. Pour about ½ cup of warmed milk into a bowl containing the yogurt for your culture and stir until smooth, then add to the larger container of milk. Stir the culture in thoroughly using an up-and-down motion. If using a Yogotherm[i] yogurt incubator, pour the cultured milk into the pail and place this into the Yogotherm unit which has been pre-heated using hot water. Set the unit aside overnight (at least 8 hours). Yogurt can also be successfully incubated using an electric heating pad, the light in your oven, a crock pot, etc. Experiment to see which works best for you.
Macaroni and Cheese
(Makes 4-6 servings)
- 2 cups of pre-cooked macaroni (I like to use the medium shells)
- ½ stick butter (¼ cup)
- ¼ cup unbleached all-purpose flour
- ½ tsp. salt
- ¼ tsp. ground pepper
- ¼ tsp. dry mustard
- ¼ tsp. Worcestershire sauce
- 2 cups goat’s milk
- 2 cups shredded cheese (if using goat cheese, use a Farmhouse Cheddar or jack-type cheese)
- Bread crumbs
Heat oven to 350⁰ F. Cook macaroni as directed, drain and set aside. Grease a 2-quart ovenproof casserole dish (or spray with PAM) and set aside. Melt butter in a 3-quart saucepan over low heat. In a small bowl, mix together the flour, salt, pepper, and dry mustard. Measure milk and add Worcestershire sauce to that. Add dry ingredients to butter in saucepan to combine. Remove from heat, and then gradually add milk mixture, while stirring constantly, until smooth and bubbly to form a roux. Boil and stir for one minute. Stir in the cheese until cheese is melted. Stir macaroni into the sauce and then pour into 2-quart casserole. Sprinkle top with bread crumbs and bake uncovered for 20-25 minutes.
New England Clam Chowder
(Makes about 4 servings)
- 6 pieces of sliced bacon, cut up
- 1 large onion, chopped
- ¼ cup unbleached all-purpose flour
- 2 cans (6 ½ oz.) minced clams, drained
- 1 large potato, diced
- ½ tsp. salt
- Pepper to taste
- 4 cups goat’s milk
Drain clams and reserve liquid. Add enough water to make one cup of liquid and set aside. Cook bacon in a pan over medium heat until crisp. Add onion and cook until onion is tender. Stir in flour, then add clams and their liquid, stirring to make a roux. Gradually stir in milk and cook until thickened. Add potatoes, salt and pepper, simmering about 15 minutes or until potato is cooked (do not boil).
Goat Cheese Lasagna with Italian Sausage
(Makes about 8 servings)
- 1 lb. bulk Italian sausage (see my Chevon page on how to make your own!)
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 4 cloves garlic, crushed and minced
- 1 Tbsp. chopped fresh flat leaf parsley
- 2 Tbsp. chopped fresh, or 2 tsp. dried basil leaves
- 1 tsp. sugar
- 1 can (16 oz.) whole tomatoes, undrained
- 1 can (15 oz.) tomato sauce
- 6-8 uncooked lasagna noodles
- 1 32 oz. container goat’s milk ricotta (you can substitute Chevre for a delightful change)
- ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
- ¼ cup chopped fresh or 1 Tbsp. dried oregano
- 4 cups shredded goat’s milk mozzarella cheese
Cook the sausage, onion, and garlic in a skillet over medium heat until the sausage is no longer pink. Stir in 1 Tbsp. parsley, basil, sugar, canned tomatoes and tomato sauce, being sure to break up tomatoes.* Heat mixture to boiling, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat to low and simmer uncovered for about 45 minutes. Place lasagna noodles in a pan of warm water and set aside. Heat oven to 350⁰ F.. In a separate bowl, mix together the ricotta, ¼ cup of the Parmesan, the remaining parsley, and the oregano. In a 13 x 9 x 2-inch pan, ladle out a layer of tomato sauce mixture, cover with a layer of softened lasagna noodles, a layer of the ricotta cheese mixture, and spread with a layer of shredded mozzarella cheese. Repeat again. By now the pan is pretty full, so top with a layer of sauce, covered with a layer of shredded mozzarella cheese and sprinkle with the last of the Parmesan. I like to sprinkle a tiny bit of chopped parsley or oregano over the top for a bit of color as well. Cover lightly with foil and bake in the oven for 30 minutes. Remove cover and bake for another 15 minutes. Allow to stand for 15 minutes before cutting to serve.
*Note: If you’re in a hurry, you can substitute a jar of your favorite spaghetti sauce, adding it to the cooked Italian sausage.
In developing these recipes, I originally worked from recipes in the following:
Betty Crocker’s New Cookbook (Macmillan USA), published 1996
Instructions for the Rival Ice Cream and Frozen Yogurt Maker
Instructions provided by the New England Cheesemaking Supply for Chevre and Yogurt
[i] The Yogotherm yogurt maker is available from a number of sources. I obtained mine from the New England Cheesemaking Supply. They also sell the yogurt makers with the little jars—I don’t personally recommend these, because they are a lot of fuss and mess (been there). The Yogotherm is simple, low-tech, and straightforward.