At the Farm

Now that I am over flowing with goat milk, I have decided to try my hand at making raw, goat milk butter!  I finally broke down and bought a cream separator, which I LOVE!  The following video will show you how I made butter, starting with the milk and finishing with sweet, creamy butter!

So!  Going through my freezer and what to my surprise is an elk roast buried down deep!  I probably should have used it last year, but I thought...Goulash!  Good and hearty...it has been below zero every night here for the last week.  Ingredients are off the wall, but I cleaned out my vegetable drawer and took a little help from "Gourmet" cook book :)


2-3 LBS ELK ROAST (OR BEEF)
5 SLICES BACON
4 MEDIUM-TO-LARGE ONIONS, SLICED
3 CLOVES GARLIC, MINCED
3 TABLESPOONS HUNGARIAN SWEET PAPRIKA
1-1/2 TEASPOONS CARAWAY SEEDS
1/3 CUP ALL-PURPOSE FLOUR
1/4 CUP RED WINE VINEGAR
1/4 CUP TOMATO PASTE
5 CUPS BEEF STOCK OR BROTH
3 CUPS WATER
1 RED BELL PEPPER, SLICED
1/2 HEAD RED CABBAGE, SLICED

FOR MARINADE:
1/2 CUP RED WINE
1/4 CUP OLIVE OIL
1 TEASPOON HUNGARIAN SWEET PAPRIKA
FRESH GROUND PEPPER AND SALT

Preparation:  Cut up meat into bite-sized cubes and marinate for several hours.

Slice bacon and cook until somewhat crispy.  Using a slotted spoon, transfer to a large bowl. Drain the meat, reserving the marinade for later.  In small batches, brown the marinated meat in the bacon drippings and transfer to the large bowl.  Add all of the onions and saute until softened and translucent, about 8 minutes.  Add the garlic, caraway seeds, Paprika, tomato paste, and flower.  You will have a thick, sticky mess, but cook on heat for about 1 minute while stirring constantly.  Add tomato paste and red wine vinegar to help deglaze the pan.  Add beef stock and water, while scraping the bottom of the pan to get all the little bits.  Add the bacon and elk.  Bring to a boil and add bell pepper and cabbage.  Simmer for approximately 45 minutes to an hour.  Serve over spaetzle or egg noodles.  (preference is most definitely spaetzle!)

This gets better if it sits, so I made it the night before and heated it up for dinner the following day.

Note:  Probably don't need to marinate the elk.  Next time, I will add carrots to the onion mixture to give it an even better depth of flavor.  Still, sooo good!

Cheers!

(august 2011)

Located in the mountain valley of Eden, Utah, we have a small herd of Nigerian Dwarf goats, which are small dairy goats that produce an abundance of milk for their size.  We also love the Nigerian Dwarf goat also because of their charming personalities and gregarious antics.  With heights ranging from 17″ to 19″ for does and 19″ to 21″ for bucks (at the withers), their size make these goats a perfect fit for those with small properties and also who do not want to handle a larger breed of goat.  Goats are social animals, and the Nigerians are especially social and full of personality.  The Nigerian Dwarf goats also have a higher percentage of butter fat than other goats and higher protein.  This makes goat milk, and especially the milk of Nigerian Dwarfs especially ideal for cheese making!  For soap making, the extra fat gives our soap extra creaminess.  It is more moisturizing and very soothing on sensitive skin.

Our herd currently includes five does, two of whom we bottle raised from birth.  We spend a lot of time with the kids from birth, but do leave them nursing on their mother until they are ready to be weaned.  With the time and handling we spend on our kids, we have had great success in friendly, happy, and certainly not shy kids!  We look forward to every spring when our new kids arrive!  If you are interested in purchasing a healthy and friendly goat, please conthttp://simplyeden.myshopify.com/pages/contact us come spring!  We are always looking for good homes for our kids!  We have both registered and non-registered for whatever your needs.  Our goats are registered with ADGA and AGS.  Check out our Facebook page for updates, as well as this website!

Smudge!  Our first Doe.  She is our herd Queen, as far as she is concerned and all attitude! 

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               Lola, our second doe.  This girl is all about being sensitive!  She LOVES being a mom!

 

Elsie!  Such a sweetie girl! This little doe is the epitome of elegance, gentleness and all around sweet!  She is my little angel and has a special place in my heart.  She has a super nice udder on her first year of freshening, and I look forward to what she shows me next year!

Zena, our instigator and all around clown disguised in an innocent facade!  She is young here and is turning into a lovely, elegant doe that I am excited to breed this fall!  She is our resident imp and loves to untie your shoelaces.  She will steal your heart and make you mutter under your breath at the same time!  As a First Freshener, she has a monster udder and triplets!  Go Girl! 

I will be adding more pics of our goat family, so stay tuned!  We have some exciting news coming soon!!!

People ask if our goats are Pygmy goats  because they are so small.  They are Nigerian Dwarf Goats, which is a miniature dairy goat breed with West African ancestry.  They do have their own registry, the Nigerian Dwarf Goat Association (NDGA) and are also registerable with the American Dairy Goat Association (ADGA) andAmerican Goat Society (AGS).  Pygmy goats are not dairy goats and are smaller, cobbier, and stouter.  The Nigerian Dwarfs have the conformation of a dairy goat, meaning the goats are judged largely on their udder size, capacity, and quality, as well as the milk that they produce.  Nigerian Dwarfs typically stand at around 22 inches at the withers for does (girls) and 23 inches for bucks (boys).

Nigerian Dwarf Goats are gaining in popularity because of their small stature, friendly nature, and endless color possibilities!  They can even have blue eyes, which is not a genetic defect.  Nigerians are incredibly comical and love to play, jumping, kicking, bucking and balancing.  If you are not careful, they can be little escape artists, which can be part of their charm.  Even though Nigerian Dwarf Goats are a small dairy goat breed, they produce one of the highest butter fat in milk and also produce more milk for their size than other dairy goat breeds.  As you can see, the Nigerian Dwarf Goats are perfect little goats for milk producing on small acreage, as well as pure entertainment!  My husband and I can sit for hours just watching them play!

We started out with Smudge as a two-day-old bottle baby and needed to get her a friend ASAP, which is how I found Lola.  She was 10 days old when I brought her home and started her on the bottle as well.  I tried breeding them at two, but they did not take.  Worried that I had started too late in their life, we had the buck over here for a two-month extended date with our girls.  After not knowing if our girls were pregnant or not, I decided to search for another goat that was pregnant.  I came home with Elsie as a First Freshener (first time pregnant), as well as a three-month old doeling.  We are hoping that the trip was not too much for Elsie and that she was able to maintain her pregnancy.  

In 2011, Lola kidded as a First Freshener with one DARLING buckling!  All went smoothly, and Lola is turning out to be an unbelievable mom, both in the nuturing department, as well as udder development!  I am pleasantly surprised as she has always been so tiny.  A large udder means more fresh goat milk for my goat-milk lotion and other goat-milk products!

During 2011, we have increased our herd to include six does and one buck.  As of this writing in March 2012, we have 11 kids that are happy and healthy and our evening entertainment!

Cheers!

 

Yeah, Yeah, Yeah…it has been such a long time since I blogged, but I have had a lot going on this summer, mostly good!

Business has been so good that I have decided to add to our small herd of Nigerian Dwarf Goats!  So, aside from milking, soaping, farmer’s markets, and even getting some sailing time in, all things milk are on my mind, including GOATS!  Any excuse to get more critters, right?!  Anyway, since kidding season, I have gone from finding some amazing homes for my goat boys and milking twice a day, to milking once a day.  Twice a day milking seemed to be giving me a good amount of milk, but the commitment was huge.  If we were late at all (or trying to have a life), the goats were upset and milking needed to be done.  I love my milking, but that evening commitment was pretty intense.  Going to only morning milkings was such a huge relief and just what I needed.  Being this was really my first year breeding, kidding and milking, I figured that I would half the amount of milk as what I was getting with twice-a-day milking.  Well, I was wrong.  Our girls dropped off quite a bit.  I am still able to keep up with demand with the milk I am getting, but I am hoping to get through winter and into kidding season again with a freezer full of milk.  With all of your support, business has been steadily increasing, so the next step is to get more milk and goats!

I started with two lovely does and have now increased my herd to six does and even one buck!  Our herd now includes Smudge and Lola, the two original girls.  I added Elsie and Zena in February and came upon little Izzy later on.  The lovely doe, Roxanne, came available, who I fell in love with several years back, and I just HAD to have her!  I purchased the amazing buck, Roxbury, that I had bred my girls to last year and am SO excited to see what the result is with the new girls.  I am also happy to say that ALL goats tested negative for CAE and CL in August, two terrible goat diseases.  I know you are so anxious to see all of the new ladies, and I will get pics posted when I get a second.

Needless to say, it is the end of September, and thoughts of spring kids are on my mind!  Breeding season starts in about three weeks for me, so keep your thoughts focused on multiple kids and lots of beautiful little doelings!  Although those little bucklings sure are fun, last year was a bit overkill in the testosterone department.  Stay tuned for breeding season in anticipation of those spring kids!

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