Wednesday, April 24, 2013

The Cream of the Crop (How I separate milk and cream)

Place raw milk in the dispenser and wait 12-48 hours. We like some cream left in the milk so I usually wait about 24 hours. Works for me. I put a dotted line where the cream has separated in case it's hard for you to see it.

A close-up of the milk/cream separation line. It's just above the butterfly's upper wing.

Drain off the milk from under the cream. I really need to get a spigot I can flip up rather than have to press down.
It's hard to keep that button pressed down after a few minutes!

When it gets down to the spigot, you have to tip it to keep the two from mixing.

I drain it off until I am getting straight cream for a few moments.
(I've noticed the sound changes when it becomes straight cream streaming into the bottle.)
We don't care for skim milk and like some of the cream to remain in the milk so
I allow cream to run into the bottle for a few seconds.
This also helps ensure that you are getting the most milk out of the cream.

Then I mix the 2-3 bottles of milk that I've drained off to make sure that there is some cream in all of them.

 Lovely cream is what is left over. I'll wait a couple days and make butter!! :-)

Monday, January 21, 2013

Minestrone Soup

3 Tbs. olive oil
3 cloves garlic, chopped
1 cup onion, chopped
1 cup chopped celery
3-4 carrots, sliced
4 cups chicken broth
15 oz. canned tomatoes, undrained.
16 oz tomato sauce
15 oz. canned kidney beans, drained
½ cup frozen corn
15 oz. can green beans
2 large handfuls fresh baby spinach
1 zucchini, cubed
1 Tbs. Italian seasoning
¼ cup barley
¾ cup small seashell pasta

In a large pot, over medium-low heat, heat olive oil and saute garlic for 2-3 minutes. Add onion, celery and carrots, saute for 5 minutes. Add chicken broth, canned tomatoes, and tomato sauce, bring to boil, stirring frequently. Reduce heat to low and add kidney beans, corn, green beans, spinach, zucchini, and Italian seasoning. Add salt and pepper to taste. Simmer for at least 1 hour, the longer the better. Add barley for the last hour of cooking. Cook pasta separately and add just before serving.