Farmers' Kitchen—No Ordinary Cheese Puffs
Orb Weaver Farm—Marjorie Susman and Marian Pollack
Written onSeptember 01 , 2009
The day-to-day swing of life at Orb Weaver Farm is determined by the season. Spring, with its lengthening days, finds us ending our cheese-making and cow chores and looking forward to the summer growing season. Beginning in June our cows are literally “put out to pasture” for the warmer months, and our efforts turn toward our market garden, which for the past 29 years has supplied our local food co-op with a variety of organic produce.
As the fall vegetable season winds down with broccoli and shallots, energy shifts back to the barn. Our herd of seven Jersey cows freshens (calves) just before Thanksgiving. By the end of November we are back in our cheese room, making cheese every Monday and Thursday. We produce an aged raw milk cheese that either ripens in our cave with a natural rind, or is aged in a walk-in cooler in wax. When the days are at their shortest, and the sun makes its low arc in the south, it can be cold and icy here in the Champlain Valley, but with the sun streaming through the south-facing windows, the warm milky aromas, and folk music on the iPod, there truly is no better place to be.
Spring and summer meals on our farm tend to be light and spontaneous, revolving around whatever is ripe and ready for eating. Winter meals are based on all the produce we’ve frozen, canned, or dried; cooking can be more complex, but the goal is still warmth and gentle comfort. This cheese puff recipe is an elegant and fun way to begin a winter feast.
Marian Pollack and Marjorie Susman have been producing cheese at the their Orb Weaver Farm in New Haven since 1981. The cheese can be found in stores in the Middlebury and Burlington areas, and at food co-ops throughout the state. Visit their website and blog at www.orbweaverfarm.com.