Forbidden Cheeses: Little Turd & Wetnurse Breast

I ran out of attention span last post before I got to talking about cheese. Now that we have three mamas in milk I’ll be having a ball experimenting with new cheeses, which along with kombucha experimenting, is my favorite homesteady sort of thing to do.

Gardening and cooking being not far behind, to be sure!

Aged chèvre (goat cheese) in the French tradition is made of the highest craft and care, even when they are whimsically-named, like Crottin (Little Turd) and Sein de NouNou (Wetnurse breast).

But here in the U.S., Land of the FreeTM, Velveeta is ‘safe’ for consumers and aged goat cheeses, ideal for homestead creation, are completely illegal.

Because they care so very much, right?

“Chèvre evolved in frugal farming households of the sort that continue to make it today. It is a cheese that’s very economical, in both time and ingredients; made on the family farm, where there are many chores to take care of and livestock to feed, a cheese that didn’t need much attention or many costly ingredients fit right in.”

That is in Central France and other locations where it’s not illegal to sell. These are cheeses that require few inputs and no regular purchases—you don’t need a cheese press, or any expensive cultures, or even rennet. Fig sap (or other coagulants like nettles) can easily be substituted for rennet as only a few drops are used to set a gallon of milk.

These are also cheeses suitable to make in warm climates, similar to the more well-known goat cheeses like Feta or a fresh goat cheese. What makes the aged chèvre so unique is that it can only be made with raw milk. You may find hard raw milk cheeses in your grocery store or farmer’s market, like Gouda or Cheddar, these are pressed cheeses aged over two months, which are legal to sell with all the proper licensing. (I have NO interest in that!)

Feta, aged in salted whey for 2 weeks, some still soaking for a sharper flavor and others now drying for packaging in Foodsaver bags for longer storage.

These illegal aged goat cheeses sit at room temperature for about four days.

Imagine the horror the germophobes have with that!

You most certainly can’t do that with pasteurized milk. These cheeses were invented before pasteurization and before refrigeration and aged for a month or two in caves.

Mine will be aged in Tupperware bins inside a small beverage fridge I use for aging cheeses. (I would prefer not to use plastics at all, but they work just fine and I don’t have other options at the moment.).

I use natural cultures, not store-bought or freeze-dried, developed from previous cheeses, and stored in the freezer. Once the cheeses develop their fungal coat after a couple of weeks, they will be wrapped and aged for about a month.

Traditionally wrapping for these cheeses include leaves, like grape and fig, and even hornet’s nests. A few will also be coated with ash, instead of wrapping, like the traditional Sein de NouNou.

It is positively amazing how differently the cheeses will taste based on just a few variables in the process!

“Relatively unknown in North America, this class of cheeses includes some of France’s most famous fromages: ash-coated and pyramid-shaped Valencay; Sainte Maure—pierced with a blade of straw (the industrial version of Sainte Maure features plastic straws!); and small, moldy Crottin are all aged chèvre cheeses. Perhaps the only well-known North American aged chèvre is Humboldt Fog, a creamy, ash-ripened goats’ milk cheese from Humboldt County, California.”

(I’ve not looked into why or how the Humboldt Fog is legal to mass produce and sell. I plan to dig into that, but my initial guess is they’ve been able to either find a way to use pasteurized goat milk or they have a state-of-the-art affinage ‘cave’ where they can age it over two months without losing the creamy texture.)

“Goats are a belligerent species that have rejected the rigorous production regime thrust upon their bovine cousins. Unlike cows, who contentedly chew their cud in confinement and produce enormous quantities of milk year-round, goats refuse to be cogs in the machine of industrialized dairying.”

On left: Cutting into the last Kensho cheese experiment, aged two months, a washed-rind cheese similar to something between a Muenster and Gouda.
Result: Delicious Success!

A most excellent resource, and the source of the above quotes:

Goats, a belligerent species? HA!
The perfectly adorable non-conformists more like!

The latest and last addition to the herd this year (in the foreground) yet to be named, and already twice the size of our wee Athena (in the background, about 5 days old), formerly Zena, we decided we prefer the former.
Any name suggestions on our newest? We are at a loss so far with this big girl who is sure to be a lifetime keeper! She came out huge and most active and ready to suckle immediately and play within 1 day!

Author: KenshoHomestead

Creatively working toward self-sufficiency on the land.

11 thoughts on “Forbidden Cheeses: Little Turd & Wetnurse Breast”

  1. Yes you can. I believe that is a Scandinavian style. The consistency is thinner, more like a yogurt drink. I do heat for yogurt and ice cream because the scalding adds a depth of flavor that I like, but if I wanted to be healthier about it I’d leave them raw. Good to hear you’ve got a nice market there.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Velveeta…one molecule off from plastic. That s*** is nasty.

    My local market used to carry a raw goat milk that was wonderful. Their “distributor” stopping carrying it.

    I love raw milk cheeses. I do manage to get Swiss raw milk gruyere and can get some local raw milk cheeses. I did a search on making raw milk yogurt and every one of them talk about heating the milk first. Why? Why can’t you make raw milk yogurt without heat?

    I’d buy cheese from you in a heartbeat.

    And, I’ve never seen long-eared goats, before!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Highlander, we got to talking about the naming and your story about how quickly the goat herd might grow—not that we want it so big! But it makes sense to keep the naming along the lineage so we don’t forget. We will keep Chestnut’s lineage in trees, Summer’s in flowers, and Phoebe in the Greek gods. Thanks for your comment, kind words and suggestions! 😘

    Like

  4. “But here in the U.S., Land of the FreeTM, Velveeta is ‘safe’ for consumers and aged goat cheeses, ideal for homestead creation, are completely illegal.

    Because they care so very much, right?”

    I bet Velveeta paid the regulators good money to make sure their brand was given the green pass so they could sell their product on the marketplace. And don’t be surprised if the USDA and other regulatory agencies paid them back the favor in return for the company’s generous donations.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. love your cheeses….making my own with my raw cows milk. so far just cultured mozzarella with my own cultures. my go to book is the same as yours. most likely i bought it because of a post of yours from a year ago or so. or maybe great minds think alike. i love that book.

    we eat a lot of mozzarella in a year so after i have mine made and frozen…it does freeze well. i will start on some of the hard cheeses. i failed before but didn’t have enough moisture. after reading about your tupperware tubs i had an AH HA!! Moment…now i know how to get it done!!

    we used to name our goats after their mothers….and their sires….sometimes combining names for a whole new one…or just a A-name or B-or C…ect…for the kid. then we know exactly who the dam was. be warned…they are addictive!! very…we started with 3 and ended up with over 40 at one time!! with 23 kids on baby bottles….they make nicer goats when hand raised…easier to handle otherwise they tend to be wild. we finally sold them all last year and stick to cows, and horses and poultry. got too old to tend to the hooves of that many goats….they need regular trimming and it can be a wrestling match! usually they won and i lost and ended up covered in mud, hay, straw and things out the back end of a goat sticking to my hair!! lol….i finally had enough and threw up my hands and sold them all!

    i do miss them sometimes. highly entertaining. delightful to watch!! put a few cut off stumps around and watch them learn to fly! with hooves out to the side leaping from stump to stump with pure joy!! goats are excellent at teaching a person all about patience and joy! and love of family….very much herd animals though they do have a rigid standard for adults. with one poor goat at the bottom of the pyramid.

    love your cheese and goat stories!! goat milk is what is recommended for ‘infant formula’….we used to make it not buy it….what the heck is wrong with people today being so dependent they cannot tend or take care of their own infants? wow….they should not be parents if they are that infantile themselves!! we used to take whatever we had for dinner and put it in the blender and make baby food!! pretty simple and cheap! again…how these people can be so baby bird like and then whine that they can’t feed their own children because they can’t BUY food for them?? really?? the simplest thing in the world to make and the easiest and they can’t manage that!!

    what are these creatures in human clothing going to do when and if there is a REAL famine and they can’t get their instant satisfaction from the grocery store?? they can’t milk a cow or goat. most don’t know that milk comes from cows and goats!! if it isn’t wrapped in plastic it isn’t food for most of these city-idiots….wow….mind numbing how bad people have devolved and what they are turning into!

    Liked by 1 person

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