Goat cappuccino

Yesterday I had a break-through with Bebe my milk goat. Every morning for the past few weeks, come milking time, I would have to catch Bebe. This involved chasing her through the goat pen, trapping her in the chicken house or under the stairs. Then I’d drag her upstairs and literally pick her up and put her on the milking stand. It made me feel like a real asshole.
My goat advisor had told me that having a milk goat is a delicate relationship. On one hand, you’re providing them food and water; on the other, you’re nursing from them as if you are a baby goat. The mom has to accept you as a legitimate milk-taker. I think Bebe’s been trying to figure out who the hell I am, and finally relented.

Today she came running up the stairs and jumped onto the stanchion, ready to be milked. I nearly wept with relief. Who wants to be the asshole all the time?
Though Bebe has tiny teats, she’s pretty easy to milk. Instead of using my whole hand to let down the milk, I use two fingers and my thumb. Sometimes I sit to the side and milk her, but I think she likes it better when I sit behind her. it’s easier for me, too, because I can reach both teats. My hands cramp up a little bit, but they’re getting stronger. I love milking, Bebe’s rumen rumbles, she eats some oats and chews her cud, waits patiently. Her udder is warm, her flank is a soft place to rest my head. She milks out about 2 cups of milk per milking, which is really all I need.

One of my chief reasons for getting goats was to have milk on hand at all times. There’s just something about that creamy substance. Harvey Considine, a man who once had 500 milk goats, said, “there are only two substances designed solely to sustain life without having a life of their own: milk and honey.” It truly is an elixir. I’ve been drinking it straight, making yogurt, and enjoying the best coffee drink ever: a goat milk cappuccino. The milk froths up pretty well, which makes me think it’s in the range of 8& fat.

9 responses to “Goat cappuccino

  1. Oh! Now I want a goat.

  2. woohoo! and you have both milk and honey–it makes the BEST drink on a gray cold morning.

  3. This post made me walk to my fridge and take a swig of my own fresh goat milk. It is fabulous. People think we’re crazy until they try it themselves.

  4. Novella Carpenter

    kate; i love yur blog. going to link….

  5. yummm and she must be really happy to get that milk out (as a mom i can relate when your milk jugs get so freaking full) i’ll have to send you my goat cheese recipe. i use nettles for rennet.

  6. you don’t boil the milk first then?

  7. Novella Carpenter

    hi dj;
    no, i just steam the milk. i drink the milk raw, too, straight from the jar, right after milking. i know exactly how the goat was milked, what she’s been eating, and that she’s healthy and clean. i do filter the milk just after milking. bebe’s shedding a bit lately…

  8. thanks! I like your blog too. I couldn’t go back to pasteurized milk after drinking raw. It’s so delicious.

  9. Milk is pasteurized commercially to remove “bugs” like E.coli, Staph, and Salmonella (all of which are natural flora for a goat), and parasites like toxoplasma. This is important because children and immunocompromised people drink milk bought from the store. Milk contaminated with these bacteria or parasites could be deadly for them. For a person with a healthy immune system, these “bugs” are not usually going to be a problem. But don’t delude yourself into thinking that because your goat is “healthy and clean” that her milk is not teeming with potentially deadly bacteria. The milk *is* contaminated with bacteria, many different kinds, and that bacteria does have the capacity to make you sick or kill you given the right circumstances. It is your sturdy constitution and immune system preventing you from becoming ill. I also drink raw milk because it does taste delicious (because of the higher fat content), but I feel that people should make educated decisions about drinking raw milk. Pasteurized milk has been shown to contain the same levels of beneficial nutrients as raw milk (it is not heat but *light* that causes these to break down). It comes down only to taste.

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