When I first started milking my beautiful Saanen goats, there were two girls that would just stand there and let me milk while they ate from a pan. There was no training, no fuss, no muss. It was super easy to milk Minnie Pearl and Millie Ann. Minnie was the better producer of the two. She would give me just over a quart of milk morning and night. For several years, they were the only two I milked.
Minnie’s only drawback was her neurotic deliveries and mothering. She never really had problems, but she’d start hollering as soon as she went into labor, and I couldn’t leave her side until the babies were safely on the ground. Actually, I had to wait for a few hours afterwards because she was likely to paw the ground or a kid or anything else in her way while she was waiting to deliver the placenta. Goodness, she was neurotic.
After her babies were born in 2009, I figured it was her last time. Her stomach muscles were sagging, and so she would just be a retired milking goat. I milked her that summer and fall and let her dry up, just a bit sad that I’d have to find a new milking goat.
The next summer, I noticed that Minnie seemed to be making an udder. I was concerned that the little buck might have bred her, but I really didn’t think that was possible. After while, I decided she wasn’t bred, so I invited her in to be milked. She had milk! It wasn’t lots, but it was milk. As I kept milking her, she made more milk. It wasn’t anywhere near the amount she made after having a baby, but still. She had milk! I continued milking her, and after everyone else was dried up, I continued milking her until about February.
I wondered if she’d do those daily meditations and visualizations again and come into milk this year. Guess what. She did. I started milking her at the beginning of June, and was only getting a very little bit to start with, but she made more and finally I was getting about a quart a day for most of the summer. I’m still milking her almost seven months later, and I’m still getting just over a pint a day. I’m so proud of my Minnie Pearl!
Since I’m getting that much milk every day, I decided to make goat’s milk fudge for the holidays.
In a large pan mix together 3 cups of sugar and 2/3 cup of cocoa. Add 1 1/2 cups of fresh or canned goat’s milk. If you don’t have goat milk, you can use evaporated milk. Cook it over a medium heat until it reaches a soft ball stage (238* F). It will get pretty hot fairly quickly, but it will take forever and a day to get that last ten degrees. You don’t need to stir it much while it’s boiling away~just enough to keep it from sticking.
It will boil up and fill the pan, so make sure you use a large pan. When it reaches the soft ball stage, remove it from the heat and add 4 tablespoons of margarine and 1 teaspoon of vanilla.
You can also add any other ingredients you want at this time. Mint extract, 1 cup of chopped walnuts, 1/3 cup of peanut butter. Be creative! Just add them, but you don’t really stir it thoroughly. Now you get to watch the thermometer go back down. While it’s cooling, you can prepare your 8″ x 8″ inch pan. Grease it with margarine. Let it cool on the counter (not in cold water or refrigerator) until it gets to be about 110* – 115* F.
When it’s cool, use a spoon and beat it until it is smooth and creamy. The longer you beat it, the smoother (less grainy) it will be. Pour it into the pan, spread it smooth, and let it cool. Once it is completely cool, you can remove it from the pan.
Set the pieces on a plate so that they are not touching each other. You’ll want to let them sit and dry for a day or so before putting it in an airtight container.
Linking to Macro Monday.
Linking to Homestead Barn Hop.
Linking to Fresh From the Farm Recipe Swap.