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Blessed Milk, Keeping the Cream!

September 18, 2020
by Greg Georgaklis

At Farmers To You we are lucky to partner with three smaller family owned Vermont dairies that produce a variety of milk. Strafford Organic Creamery sends us Whole, 2% and 1% homogenized milk among other offerings. While Rogers Farmstead and Larson Farm and Creamery both produce strictly what we refer to as creamline or cream top milk for us to enjoy year round. Some might recognize this type of milk as non-homogenized.

Creamline milk comes straight from the cow with the cream naturally separated, floating  towards the top in the bottle. Rogers Farmstead and Larson Farm and Creamery do not offer homogenized milk because they feel it is an unnecessary extra step that has been proven to add nothing to the value of their milk. 

Historically the homogenization process was developed to efficiently blend different qualities of milk into a more palatable product while also increasing its shelf life. Farmers To You sends you milk only a day or two after each dairy farmer that we partner with has milked the cows. This means the only reason for homogenization is for preference.

The act of homogenization binds the milk’s cream to the proteins using a high pressurizing process. Many now think that is how milk is supposed to be – smooth with no cream on top. Interestingly those bits of cream used to be the prize that everyone treasured and for some they still are. 

Years ago, when I was a college student in England, each morning the milkman would deliver pints of fresh creamline milk. My roommates and I would fight over who got to pour the cream into their coffee and cereal daily. Those who missed out on the cream got what was left: the equivalent of whole or 2% milk. Fortunately some of us enjoyed this slightly lighter drink and so everyone would win! 

Those who are more drawn to the slightly lighter version of milk might have noticed that Farmers To You has had limited homogenized milk offered by Strafford Organic Creamery. To all families who love Strafford milk (and I don’t blame you), you wanted more than we could provide this past month. We genuinely understand how your coffee, cereal, tea, chocolate chip cookies, and macaroni and cheese didn’t taste the same. 

For a cow to produce milk she needs to give birth to a calf. On a small pasture based dairy farm, calving season means farmers leave some milk for the babies (larger, industrial dairies feed their newborn calves with powdered milk replacements instead). So, on the flip side of your disappointment in not getting the greatly cherished Strafford milk there is our farmers who are taking extra good care of the calves by feeding them their own mother’s milk.

At this time please do not hesitate to try Rogers Farmstead and Larson Farm and Creamery’s products. If you want to try cream top milk, but fear the little lumps of cream, here are a few tricks I use to do my own blending. 

When you first get your cream top milk shake it vigorously and do the same just before pouring it each time. On the other hand, if you love heavy or clotted cream in your tea, or coffee for instance, let the milk sit unshaken for a day or so. Dip a small spoon in the top and pull the beautiful cream out of the top and smear it on your fruit or mix it with your coffee. Believe me, this cream is enjoyed and cherished around the world for its nutrition and taste. 

With this in mind, give cream top or creamline milk a try this week, so you don’t have to just take my word for it. Hopefully, you will fall in love with all the natural creamy goodness. 

Thank you for your partnership!

Greg