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  #1  
Old 12/07/08, 06:08 PM
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Arkansas/Texas border
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using frozen goats milk

This spring/summer my goats were giving more milk than I could keep up with so I decided to freeze some of it. I have subsequently tried to thaw some out (and then had to put it in the blender because it separated) and have tried to make yogurt (Salton yogurt maker/yogourmet starter) with NO success. It just wont set up. I made great yogurt with fresh milk this summer. Is it failing now because it has been frozen?
Same goes for my chevre. It won't set up. Well, it'll set up a little, but not much. I just bought some new rennet (good quality, not junket) and chevre started because I thought that might be the problem--using old starter & rennet. But apparently not.
I am frustrated! Any thoughts?

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  #2  
Old 12/08/08, 05:48 AM
Alice In TX/MO's Avatar
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I have not been successful using frozen milk, either.

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  #3  
Old 12/08/08, 06:32 AM
 
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Location: Arkansas/Texas border
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Actually that does make me feel better--I'm not the only one! thanx!

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  #4  
Old 12/08/08, 07:09 AM
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Never tried it myself, but I read on another forum that the frozen milk when thawed can be used to make butter in a blender. You might try that.

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  #5  
Old 12/09/08, 02:00 AM
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Maybe it would make ricotta. Especially if it's already kinda separated. I use ricotta like chevre and it's pretty good. Especially with garlic and dill or basil.

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  #6  
Old 12/19/08, 08:33 PM
Lonesome Doe Nubians
 
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Location: North of Houston TX
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From this coming week until my does freshen in March, all the milk in the house for my kefir, my GB's yogurt and cheese, all comes from frozen milk (oh and soap and fresh drinking). I do let it naturally defrost in the fridge, and since I sell my milk frozen, the does are milked, milk is strained as they are milked (machine) the milk is immediatly poured into 1/2 gallon milk jugs, frozen and kept in a freezer with the defrost timer turned off. I never have problems with my milk seperating this way. Two of the gals who make cheese locally for resale purchase frozen milk from me during the year also. Not sure why you would be having problems making cheese from frozen milk, it doesn't change the milk at all.

Another thought is to simply make cheese all spring and summer and freeze it, cherve freezes nicely. Just don't herb it up and then freeze it, the herbs don't do well then. Vicki

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  #7  
Old 12/20/08, 08:36 AM
 
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Freezing milk, particularily cow or goat, damages the membrane around the fat globules, much the same way that churning to make butter does. This usually causes the fat to float freely making a separation so that fat would be lost to the curd in the cheesemaking process. Also the fat without it's protective coating is more vulnerable to 'off' flavours and/ or capilase/lipase introduction which increases the rick of bitterness developing in aged cheese. These 'free floating' fat bits turn into free flowing fatty acids which affects the activity of your starter culture too. Liz

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  #8  
Old 12/20/08, 08:52 AM
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I've never had much success with frozen milk. I will still freeze it when plentiful and feed it to goat kids in an emergency and will use it for my soapmaking but to drink it or use it for yogurt - no. And I've tried many different ways of freezing and thawing. Congrats to you if you're able to make it work.

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  #9  
Old 12/20/08, 08:44 PM
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Va
Posts: 90

freezing goat milk is an excellent way of useing up valuable room in your freezer that could be put to better use. would be nice if everything went as perfectly for the rest of us as they seem to for Vicki however the idea of freezing cheese is excellent and should have positive results for any one.
Jotun

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  #10  
Old 12/21/08, 02:16 PM
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Catdance,

I've been using frozen goat's milk and without separation: I drink it straight from the 1/2 gallon container (shame on me), sometimes with added honey (yum!) and have been even using it for egg-nog this season. No problems. I'm also using it for making yogurt (served with honey again) and doing quick ferments with kefir grains and adding store bought, plain sour yogurt for starter to make yogurt and yogurt cheese (labneh).

However, I only thaw my milk out in the fridge, which takes a couple days. I also notice that goat milk retains a higher quality after freezing (in my experience) than does cow's milk, both in taste and texture. Perhaps it's because goat is naturally more homogenized than cow's milk and doesn't suffer the breakdown? Who knows.

Try thawing it out slowly in the fridge and see if that solves your problem.

Best,
Rob

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  #11  
Old 12/21/08, 07:48 PM
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: NE Kansas
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My wife has froze excess goats milk for the past four years with no problems whatsoever. One thing we always do is chill the milk first. Also, our freezer is the old type without any defrost cycle. Our milk is never separated, and always tastes as good as fresh and lasts a couple weeks in the fridge.

To avoid separating milk always follow hygenic milking and milk handling procedures, i.e. chilling milk to 40 degrees in thirty minutes before putting in a freezer WITHOUT auto defrost. Best of luck.

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  #12  
Old 12/24/08, 08:16 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LizD View Post
Freezing milk, particularily cow or goat, damages the membrane around the fat globules, much the same way that churning to make butter does. This usually causes the fat to float freely making a separation so that fat would be lost to the curd in the cheesemaking process. Also the fat without it's protective coating is more vulnerable to 'off' flavours and/ or capilase/lipase introduction which increases the rick of bitterness developing in aged cheese. These 'free floating' fat bits turn into free flowing fatty acids which affects the activity of your starter culture too. Liz
I have read this for years and have never found it to be true for properly handled goat milk. As a non-commercial farmstead cheese maker I often use frozen milk for Chevre and Feta. There are plenty of professional Artisan cheese makers working with frozen goat milk too.

Here are some pics of Chevre I made this month with frozen goat milk

Seasoned Chevre rolled in cracked pepper,


Plain Chevre rolled in Herbs De Provence,


Chevre mixed with assorted dried fruit rolled in pecans,


Christy
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  #13  
Old 12/24/08, 08:38 AM
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Belize
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You could try adding calcium chloride:

http://homesteadersupply.com/store/i...roducts_id=113

Quote:
Calcium Chloride - 120 ml
$4.95

Used when making cheese from homogenized, pasteurized or frozen milk to help restabilize milk structure and hasten curd set.

Can also be used at certain times of the year, when firm curd is hard to obtain due to changes in animal diet and stage of lactation.
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  #14  
Old 12/24/08, 05:13 PM
 
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Well Chevre isn't exactly aged and I have found in the past that making fresh cheese, depending on the time of lactation, frozen milk might work but for hard cheese the curd doesn't set properly. Just my observations but Woodsman is right it may have worked had I added calcium chloride to restabilize the milk; different cheesemakers have different observations. Liz

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  #15  
Old 12/27/08, 07:37 AM
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Location: NE Kansas
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Some people have problems with frozen milk while others don’t. Barring the auto defrost freezer fault other aspects affect the ability of goat milk to go through the process of being frozen, thawed and turned to cheese without problems. These include the breed of goat, her lines within that breed, feed and milk handling as well as the stage of lactation.

For instance I have Nubians so that could make a big difference in why my milk handles these procedures.

If you feed an ample amount of Alfalfa that will bring up the calcium content of the milk allowing for a consistently firm curd without ever needing to add calcium chloride.

Christy

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  #16  
Old 01/19/09, 05:21 PM
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: Idaho
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I froze any extra goat milk we had. Thought we had about 15 gallons, turned out to be 20.

Anyway it thaws perfectly and we used it for drinking and cooking.

Didnt turn any into yogurt or cheese.

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  #17  
Old 01/19/09, 07:12 PM
 
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Location: Northeast Kingdom of Vermont
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Vicki has Nubians also. I have noticed that some of my thawed milk separates and some doesn't. Maybe the milk that doesn't is from my Nubians?

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  #18  
Old 01/19/09, 08:22 PM
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Arkansas/Texas border
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Well, I had some luck with making chevre. It wasnt as good as fresh and it didn't make as much, but I was pleased with my success. I appreciate all the input and I am going to try diffferent things that y'all suggested. I just really want to make the good yogurt that i made in the summer! However, kidding season is almost here....yeah!
Thanks again!
S

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