- Is all feta cheese goat cheese?
No, not today. Originally, all feta was made when the shepherds took the sheep or goats to the mountains for the summer pastures and the feta was made from either milk or a combination of goat and sheep milk. This is why many people think they have tried goat cheese if they eat feta cheese. In many locales, feta is still made with goat/sheep milk but in the US, most feta cheese today is made with cow milk. Our Redwood Hill Farm Goat Milk Feta cheese is the one raw milk cheese that we produce and has won many awards. See our website for many delicious ways to enjoy! http://www.redwoodhill.com/recipes
- Can you freeze goat cheese?
Yes, the chèvre, which is a fresh spreadable goat cheese, freezes very well. Always allow it to thaw in the refrigerator, which can take up to 24 hours.
The French-style, rind-ripened goat cheeses can also be frozen, but when thawed do not showcase as well as prior to freezing. The nutrient content will remain the same. A good way to use these cheeses after freezing would be in cooking.
The traditional cheeses such as goat cheddar and our raw milk feta will last 6 months or more in their packaging, so there is no need for freezing. If the packaging does get opened, freezing could then be an option, but when thawed, they will be drier and best used in cooking.
- Is goat cheese pasteurized?
Goat cheese can be made with either pasteurized or raw milk. Like cow milk cheeses, if the cheese is made with raw milk it must be aged for 60 days or more. This is why fresh cheeses, like chèvre, are always made with pasteurized milk. The label will indicate whether the cheese is made with pasteurized or raw milk. For our pasteurized milk cheeses, we use the “Vat Pasteurization” method. This requires that the milk be heated to 145 degrees F for a minimum holding of 30 minutes and then immediately chilled. This is the lowest temperature for pasteurization allowable by law. By comparison, HTST or “High Temperature/Short Time” requires that the milk be heated to 162 degrees F for 17 seconds. HTST is the method used most frequently by creameries because of the shorter time. UHT or “Ultra High Temperature” requires heating the milk to 275 degrees F for one second and will render the product virtually sterile for long lasting time on the shelf. We prefer the “Vat Pasteurization” method for our goat milk dairy products and believe it is the best method for preserving the integrity of the milk.
- Do your products contain lactose or casein?
Goat milk naturally contains less lactose than cow’s milk, but it is not lactose-free. Our goat milk yogurts and kefirs both contain about 2% lactose. Under our sister brand name, Green Valley Organics®, we produce lactose-free yogurt, kefir, and sour cream made with organic cow’s milk. Visit the website to learn more at Green Valley Lactose Free.
Casein in Goat Milk: Casein is a natural protein that is found in all milk. Many people have difficulty with Casein especially the Alpha S1 casein found in cow milk and so are allergic to cow dairy. Studies have shown that goat milk is very low in Alpha S1 casein and primarily contains Alpha S2 casein. That is why many of those allergic to cow dairy may be able to use goat milk products in their diets successfully.