Issue No. 13/14
By Susan Marquis
Getting off the number four subway at Union Square/14th street and heading into daylight, Cheese Enthusiast looked around in wonder at changes in the streetscape from
not too long ago. Microbreweries, a Whole Foods, gorgeous apartment buildings, this is no longer your father’s Union Square in Manhattan. To be more accurate, this isn’t even your older sister’s Union Square. Union Square still has an interesting collection of more or-less permanent inhabitants but it also has children’s birthday parties, texting teenagers, and NYC lawyers “taking a meeting,” even as they carry their washable shopping bag on their way to the Greenmarket.
The Closing Down of a Groundbreaking Publication
Cheese Enthusiast notes with sadness and great respect Vicki Dunaway’s closing down of CreamLine, the iconic publication for small dairies. Vicki has been a leader in the reawakening of the artisanal and farmstead cheese movement in the United States. She has been a home cheesemaker, small commercial artisanal cheesemaker, teacher, mentor, and visionary. In addition to CreamLine, Vicki published Home Dairy News for many years, turning the publication over to Cheese Enthusiast in 2008.
Raw Milk Raids
by Chris Thompson
It appears the Federal Government has decided to crack down on raw-milk sellers who are working at the gray edges of the legal and regulatory system to get their product to a waiting healthy-food market. In April, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) concluded a year-long “sting” operation against Rainbow Acres Farm in Kinzers, PA,
culminating in a surprise inspection and subsequent court fi lings to stop the dairy, owned by Amish farmer Dan Allgyer, from continuing to ship its raw milk across state lines to a buyer’s co-op in the Washington, D.C. suburbs.
Who: Ruth Monforte
Where: Stratford, Ontario, Canada
Ruth Monforte was a highly successful chef cooking in wellregarded restaurants in Stratford, Ontario, when she recognized that “cooking is hard to get old in” and it was time for a change. She launched Monforte Dairy in 2004 and has since followed a classic path of a start-up, small cheese-making operation that includes inspiration, experiment, missteps, the ups and downs of government grants, the challenges of implementation, and success through a continuously improving, quality product.
Do Try This At Home
Recipes from The Joy of Cheesemaking
Okay, we admit it. Despite our wizened look and scholarly demeanor while conducting our professional review of The Joy of Cheesemaking (elsewhere in this issue), we were on more than one occasion distracted by our taste buds shouting, “oooh! Th at sounds good. Savory cherry compote would be perfect with Manchego!” We dutifully refocused our eyes on the text and carried on to bring the essence of Jody Farnham and Marc Druart’s new book to our readers. Once we’d completed our assignment, however, we stepped aside from the cheesemaking and headed for the kitchen to try out several of the recipes that use or complement some of our favorite cheeses. And now, good reader, we will share what we’ve learned with you…
Cheese Research and Wanderings…
by Chris Thompson
The Plague Was Good for Cheesemaking and Hard Cheese is Evil to Digest Modern cheesemakers are graced, especially in the New World, with plenty of choices: milk animal, scope and nature of the make, ageing, and final product style. As we saw in our last two issues of CE in the “Postcards from Gubbeen” articles by Matt Logan, in southern Ireland today people are making cheeses in the French and Dutch styles using local milk. There, and in most of the western world, cheesemaking choices can be tailored to market interest and branding considerations. But cheesemaking evolved over the millennia driven more by necessity than choice. Without sophisticated barns, milking machinery, diverse feed sources, and swift transportation, the cheesemaker dealt with the local climate and what animals could live in it, how much pasture land was available, what the local microbial environment would do to a cheese, and who would be eating the cheese, and how soon, and where.
So, Have You Tried Yak Milk, Yet?
by Chris Thompson
While shopping for raw milk the other day in an organic grocery co-op, I came upon a woman by the dairy case who was asking everyone where she could get “mothers’ milk,”
that is, human milk bottled and sold for consumption. She was sure it was available commercially. I admitted to being kind of freaked out by the possibility, and I’m sure she was a bit wacky (well, she was, even if she was right about this), but a little research discovered that there is a market for human milk on the Internet—lots of women off ering theirs for sale, and even a company, Prolacta Bioscience, that is marketing it.