Not long after we moved to our new home in Maffra I happened upon a shop called Heathy Fermenting and I just had to go in and have a look. I noticed cheese and yoghurt making supplies, preserving supplies and a lot more, and started chatting to the owner, Gordon. He mentioned that he would be holding cheese making classes soon, so I put my name down for him to let me know the date, time and location. Not long after, an email landed in my inbox, to which I promptly responded and booked in for the class. The class was wonderful, friendly and informative. We all went home ready to make our first batch of cheese, and looking forward to the next class. However, it was at the class that I was told that there was a push for local farmers to be able to sell their own milk and something would be happening soon. I wasn’t sure how or when this was to happen, but given the treatment of our farmers by the fat corporates, I have been watching out.
I am now so, so excited to tell you that when I was reading the local newspaper earlier this week, I noticed this little piece about “Gippsland Jersey”
A quick search of the internet and I discovered that Healthy Fermenting stocked their milk. I told Gary about the story and he went and bought our first 2 litre bottle. But it just wasn’t the milk that he came home with… It was also the interaction, he told me how interesting it was in the shop, chatting to Gordon and learning how this little milk brand is going to help our struggling dairy farmers, also while they were chatting, another chap walked in just to thank Gordon for introducing him to Gippsland Jersey – he had been trying to get his children and grandchildren to stop drinking softdrink and to drink more milk – this milk has done the trick. They love the taste and he is one happy dad and grandfather.
You know we forget, dairy cows don’t take the weekend off, they have to be milked 7 days a week, so the farmers don’t get a day off either, it’s not an easy life, it is hard work, and long days. Meanwhile the fat corporates sit in their ivory towers earning obscene amounts of money for themselves and their shareholders (just check out their recent after tax profits), but they pay our hardworking farmers a pittance in return, in fact, as you may or may not know they recently reduced how much they pay them! – OK now I’ll step down from my soapbox, sorry…
So I wanted to do something with this new beautiful product… What to make – Crème Caramel seamed like an obvious choice, but I had never made it before. I hit the books and found two recipes. Of course they were both different. The one I wanted to make simply said, “pour the resulting custard into a caramel-coated mould”, it didn’t give quantities or instruction on how to make the caramel. So I decided to make the custard recipe from one book and the caramel from the other. Again, having not made a Crème Caramel before, when I poured the caramel into the moulds, it set rock hard! I panicked – I thought I would have a horrible mess and what about our teeth! So took a deep breath, calmed down and decided to follow the recipe.
They were a triumph, beautiful creamy custard and golden caramel! I can’t wait to use Gippsland Jersey to make my yoghurt.
So, if you can, please by local, help our farmers, and reward yourself in more ways than you think.
Until next time…