All posts filed under: Farm Happenings

Meet the Cheese Shop Girls: Jennie

Everyone, meet Jennie! If you have taken a tour in the new shop or sampled some of our cheese in a grocery store, she has probably already made you smile at least a few times! This lady has been a constant source of encouragement and joy in the shop. As soon as she walks in you can tell she really cares about people and puts their needs above her own. Every time. Though we don’t see her as often as we would like, she’s always there when we’re in a pinch. As much as we possibly can, we’ll never let her leave completely! Jennie Pickens What is your role at the Cheese Shop and how did you come to be here? A couple of years ago when the new Cheese Shop was getting ready to open I heard that they wanted to hire some holiday help. I go to church with John and Ruth, so I told her I was interested. Once I got started, I didn’t want to stop! She hasn’t been able to …

Cheddar – PART TWO: The Magic

Where did we leave off again? *Reads past blog, laughs at my own jokes.* The last thing we did was admire the “cheddaring” process, which is fusion and stretching of the curds which causes that beautiful strength and elasticity. At the tail-end of that stretching and stacking process, we start to check the acidity levels of the cheese. Too low of a pH in the cheese can cause bitterness and an acidic taste. Too high of a pH level can inhibit the flavor intensity and gives ground to odd flavors. The pH at this stage also affects the texture of the cheddar further down the line. So how we check the acidity levels is MAGIC. Some people may try to tell you that its “math” and “science,” but friends, don’t believe them. Don’t be swayed by their over-simplification of a divine process. HAH. Just kidding, it is like super sciency, I just understand literally 0% of it. You guys are probably wondering, “why is she trying to explain something she knows absolutely nothing about?” Good …

Cheddar – PART ONE: From Milk to Muscle

  Hi, my name is Marlies and I am here to tell you that the best way to work a hairnet is with some unruly eyebrows and a sarcastic look on your face at all times. It’s awesome because then no one wants to talk to you. People, it is impossible to take someone seriously when they look like a cupcake. But apparently, we are into “hygiene” and “food safety”, so I endure this every day for you. You’re welcome. Since I can hardly get myself to work on time when I am scheduled at 7am, the probability of me getting up two hours earlier to document the earliest steps in the Cheddar-making process was slim at best. You didn’t miss much, I promise. I was like, “I could get up and get them a picture of milk sitting there doing nothing, or I get two more hours of sleep.” So this is what happened when (hopefully) all of us were in dreamland: a) Pasteurization of 1250 liters of milk. b) Starter (a low-key word …