Choosing the right milk can be one of the most important factors in having a great cheesy outcome. If you’d like to find truly local sources of milk near you, find your state on this web resource:
I have personally tested the brands of milk suggested below. They all make great cheese with our kits.
Found in Fred Meyer’s natural foods fridge. I believe their deal is that under this name, they get milk to you from farmers in your area. There’s a Pacific Northwest co-op for example.
Whole and Lowfat cow milk- found at Alberta Co-op, Bob’s Red Mill, New Seasons. This dairy is right here in Portland, OR!
Organic brand by Kroger can be found in Fred Meyer’s natural foods fridge and works well too. I can’t find much info. on their site about milk sources though.
Pasteurized gallons found at New Season’s and many mainstream super markets works well and is a local dairy as well.
Pasteurized gallons found in Oregon and California stores everywhere works too.
Store brand- 1 gallon
On a holiday break in San Diego, CA recently I successfully made mozzarella with this milk. These self-serve stores are in CA, NV, AZ so far.
Any of the better brands found at co-ops are great too!
Quarts of this Pasteurized Goat Milk are available in Portland, OR Trader Joes but I searched online and I saw lots of proof of other cities’ Trader Joe’s carrying it as well. Call the Summerhill’s 1800 number to find a source near you.
If you can only find ultra pasteurized goat milk (like Meyenberg, most common) you can still make the acid-coagulated chevre recipes in our kits (or paneer and queso blanco for that matter). If you move on to make chevre with rennet or cultures you will need plain pasteurized milk like Summerhill mentioned above.
Abita Springs Farm
An urban goat farm here in the heart of Portland. Read about my visit to Abita Springs Farm. I found the info below on this website: A Campaign For Real Milk. Fresh daily, pure, high quality whole goat’s milk raw or pasteurized, fresh or frozen from this high production herd of Alpine dairy goats. $5 per half-gallon in new recyclable plastic, or bring your own container. The girls are happy, healthy, free-range, urban goats. Well fed on natural pasture browse, dairy quality alfalfa and grass hay. Their grain is custom blended and they have free-choice access to sea kelp mineral supplement. Convenient to the greater Portland-Metro area, close to PDX airport (NE Cully and 60th). Evening milking begins about 6pm, year round. Contact: Ed and Nancy Arcement, (503) 287-7773.
Just outside of the city, near Troutdale, Oregon, you can get milk at Terra Farma from Mike and Linda. Email or call them (503-849-8121) to set-up a date. They have a lovely little farm and are so generous about short tours- bring the kids! Here’s a map.
LACTOSE-FREE & ULTRA-PASTURIZED
If you must, you can use lactose-free milk or ultra-pasteurized milk with the Paneer and Queso Blanco Kit and Goat Cheese Kit recipes. The reason is that these recipes don’t make cheese by enzyme coagulation (plain pasteurized milk gives us more to work with). These recipes produce cheese by acid-coagulation. If you move on to make these cheeses with rennet or cultures, ultra pasteurized milk will not work.
More to come about making vegan cheeses!