Friday, June 8, 2012

I Dream of Cream

Although we have a plethora of fresh milk here on the homestead, we are at a loss for cream.  Well, at least at a loss for easily obtained cream.  

Goat milk is naturally homogenized so the cream does not rise to the top like it does with fresh cow milk.  If I want to get some cream out of my goat milk, I have to let the milk set in the fridge, undisturbed, for four or more days.  Some of the cream will rise to the top, but it's usually only a couple of tablespoons worth per half gallon jar.  I'll skim that little bit off the top & put it into a container in the freezer for using in recipes like Creamed Lambs Quarters.  At one point I had eventually accumulated enough to make butter, but it didn't turn out.  Not sure why, all I know is that I wasted a bunch of cream.

Technically, there is a mechanical device called a cream separator which would allow my milk to be relieved of it's cream, but there's no way I could justify spending upwards of $300 on a contraption like that.  Even at today's high butter prices, I would have to make one hundred pounds of butter to get our money out of it.  Not only that, but cleaning it is a huge pain in the behind.  I know this because we did have a manual cream separator years ago; I could never get it to work properly and everything had to be taken apart and cleaned after each use. Which would be ok except there were like a million pieces to clean....and put back together each time.

So even though Paul has mentioned the possibility of getting a family milk cow one day (yes dear, you
did say that), I am still without the means to acquire any significant amount of cream from my current dairy animals.  Whenever Julie over at Mooberry Farm posts pictures of Matilda, I break out in hives with envy.

I want so desperately make sour cream, cream cheese and butter and ice cream.  

Well, I think I may the answer to two of the above problems; Yogurt!

Yogurt cream cheese spread on homemade toast.
In my attempts to make a thick homemade yogurt from our goat milk, I've done a lot of straining.  And I kept some of it in the strainer until it was really, really thick. This batch wasn't very tart so I just added a bit of stevia to it, stirred it in and I had a darned close substitute to cream cheese!

I did the same thing with a very tart batch of yogurt, but instead of adding stevia, I added a drop of lemon juice.  Pseudo-sour cream!  

Goat cheese, beef and onion stuffed Enchilada topped with
more goat cheese (hey, we got a lot of cheese around here)
and a couple hearty dollops of my pseudo sour cream!
I'm not sure if the pseudo sour cream and cream cheese will work the same in cooked or baked dishes, but I'm sure I'll end up experimenting.

Another two items to scratch off my grocery list!  


  1. Funny, I saw an old cream chrun at a junk store today for $25.00, I think. Not too many parts. Have you tried eBay for an old, simple one? Or a food processor?

  2. Good for you, Carolyn.... I think your goodies look fantastic. We haven't had supper yet and boy does that enchilada look yummy!

    I *do* feel rather spoiled to have Matilda and the goats. :)

  3. I had no idea about the differences from getting the cream from cow's milk, always learning something from you! The other goodies looks awesome!

  4. I have *pondered* a cream separator myself but always balked at the price. After your description of cleaning the silly thing, I think I'll pass altogether! :)
    I would like to make sour cream though and I really like your pseudo sour cream idea! Thanks!!

  5. I don't much cream with my Willow either. I know she withholds it because once for some reason she totally let down I got almost a quart of cream from one milking.....that was a first and a last.

    I guess I will wait until my Jersey heifer gets bred and calves....over a year from now. That's called counting your chickens......etc.