Simply Resourceful

Simple ways to be more conscious about how we use our resources.

Milk in a Glass Bottle

I remember reading awhile back that if you are able to get your hands on some raw milk, that you have been blessed by the dairy Gods.  Milk in the grocery store has changed dramatically in the past few decades with homgenization and pasteurization.  Milk is heated to high temperatures to kill all of the bad bacteria that could potentially make some people sick; but in the process, the high temperatures kill good vitamins and minerals.  These vitamins and other essential nutrients are then added back into the milk.  I grew up on a dairy farm the first 8 years of my life, and I remember walking to the milk house, dipping a pitcher into the bulk tank, and retrieving fresh milk straight from the cow.  It was heavenly!!  Each morning, the cream would rise to the top and we would have to stir it back into the milk.  

My taste buds have changed throughout the years; so much that I rarely drink a fresh glass of milk.  The taste just doesn't hit the spot for me.  Paul enjoys milk, and we want to give him the best food we can, so Jon and I don't purchase dairy products unless it states "Rbst-free on the container." 

While shopping at the grocery store recently, Jon picked out the only milk that can be purchased out of a glass container.  It was exciting, something new!  The glass containers lack a detailed label, but one can tell just from the taste that it is different from all the rest.  Cream settles on the top and it just tastes better.  I wrote the store asking for details about this product.  Here is what they said: 

Straus Family Creamery milk.  It is organic and hormone free (as well as antibiotic free).  And if I may quote from their web site:  "All of our milk products are pasteurized at 170F degrees for a total of 19 seconds, about the same temperature as a nice toasty cup of hot chocolate. Unlike most organic milk (which is ultra-pasteurized at 280F degrees for 2-4 seconds), you'll really taste the true flavor of our cows’ diet. Our grasses tend to be sweeter because of the salty ocean air out here in northern Marin."  The milk is not homogenized, and therefore, depending upon which type you are drinking, you will find a nice little layer of cream floating on the top (easily mixed back into the milk). 

Jon and I really enjoy this milk!  We also like the glass bottle (which has a deposit).  I'm really not that old, but I can still remember when my Mom returned glass Pepsi bottles to the grocery store.  The more I read about plastic (Slow Death by Rubber Duck), the more I am motivated to keep it out of our home.  Even if plastic is recyclable, (e.g. milk jug), there are still things to be considered.  Each time plastic is recycled, the chemical structure is weakened and its quality is reduced.  Plastic also comes from petroleum.  Here in Oregon, our plastics are shipped by boat to China where it is melted and changed back into more plastic stuff (e.g. toys) and sent back to us.  The system is completely unsustainable on so many levels considering the environmental laws (or lack thereof) in China and all of the nasty stuff (e.g. BPA, lead, etc.) that has been added to the plastic which have health concerns for all of us. 

I made homemade butter from the whipping cream.  I find it amazing that a white liquid turns yellow after 10 minutes of mixing it!!  A great compliment to Jon's homemade bread!


Phoebe May 19, 2011 at 10:17 PM  

Yum! Buck and I are trying to build the homestead up in such a way that we can support/ accommodate a milk cow. We have a lot of fences to build first.
I too have memories of milk straight from the cow.
One of our evening jobs as kids (along with dishes and cracking nuts) was to shake a jar of cream while we watched T.V. I would always be surprised by how fast it would turn to butter.

About this blog

A weekly update on our adventures of trying to be more self-sufficient by using resources wisely. We explore a variety of topics that most broadly fit in the "Homesteading" category, i.e. beekeeping, organic gardening, edible landscaping/fruit forest, food preservation/canning, woodworking, soap-making, and environmental stewardship.

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