"We must achieve the character and acquire the skills to live much poorer than we do. We must waste less. We must do more for ourselves and for each other. It is either that or continue merely to think and talk about changes that we are inviting catastrophe to make. The great obstacle is simply this: the conviction that we cannot change because we are dependant on what is wrong. But that is the addict's excuse, and we know that it will not do."
—Wendell Berry

Tuesday, 14 May 2013

Our new heifer.

Meet Bonnie.
Bonnie is a Brown Swiss. I have been wanting a cow of this breed for a long time now. Brown Swiss give milk almost as good as Jerseys but also drop quite passable beef calves. Much as I love my Jersey cow, Annabelle, her bobby calves left much to be desired when slaughter time came. So when we decided that we could not tolerate shop bought milk anymore each time Anna was off the milk before her next calf was born, we purchased Bonnie to be our second milking cow.
Now we will undergo a year or so of training before we even get a single drop of milk from Bonnie but it will be worth it to have fresh milk all year round. Not to mention the extra volume of milk for cheese making when both cows are in milk. Currently it is quite hard for me to make any sizeable cheese on the milk of one cow as the oldest milk should be for cheese making is twenty four hours or less. So with one jersey cow I am usually limited to around fifteen litres or less over this period. Two cows will give me twenty litres or more to play with on most days.
With this in mind we have purchased a twenty litre Bain-marie for use as a cheese vat. I will get my friendly local electrician to install a digital thermostat for precise temperature control and we should be on our way to some serious cheese!

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