Monday, August 16, 2010

Milk Anyone?

About two years I became aware of 'raw' milk.  My husband was indeed the wise one (again) who informed me of the difference between the two forms of milk, he, his ten other siblings and both their parents had drank fresh raw cows milk everyday during his childhood and into adulthood.  I replied "Yes that might have been fine back then...but there must be so many germs and diseases within the milk...thanks but no thanks I'll have my milk from a store!"

The Cream Of The Crop!

It amazes me how ridiculously silly I am at times!  My beloved then went on to tell me that the milk that we buy in stores has been processed so much that it is very difficult for us to process and that raw milk was much more easily assimilated by our bodies.  So I began my investigations!  Wow I was so amazed at the facts I turned up!  Almost immediately I ran back to Hubby begging him to allow us to buy raw milk...and that was as far as I got.

Starting To Come Together...

Why?  Because the Irish government has, since 1997, made it illegal for farmers to sell raw unpasteurized milk! Read this pamphlet produced by Teagasc.  Among many of the farmers we know it has long been thought that much scare-mongering has gone on from the governmental Department of Agriculture, to scare the general public from consuming non-pasteurized milk...simply to line their own pockets! 

TaDa!  Homemade Butter!

I was aghast!  To stumble on this wonderful source of God given nutrients and then to be told that I can't access it!  I actually was quite cross about this, as I felt that it was my Husbands decision; to make an informed decision for our family, whether or not we would consume raw milk...not the governments!  Also just for your information the government has also made killing your own livestock, on your own farm illegal (it must be sent to an abattoir) as is selling or giving your meat to any third parties...though at this stage they are still allowing it to be consumed (once back from the abbatior) on your own premises by ones own direct family.

Fast forward to several weeks ago...we were able to acquire raw milk!  I am so thrilled!  However my Husband does not wish for me to consume it throughout this pregnancy simply due to the fact that I have not yet built up a tolerance to any natural bacterias that will be present within the milk, this was seconded by one or two dairy farmers that we know.  So I must wait until the baby is born to begin enjoying small amounts to build up my tolerance.  My Mother-in-law consumed raw milk throughout her whole childhood and through her subsequent eleven pregnancies and she was never affected by any illness due to raw milk.  Our children thoroughly enjoyed drinking their 'farm' milk, our son went to collect it with my Husband so he is a little more excited by it, he even states that it tasted like cows!

We haven't gotten any for a few weeks but hope to organise our collection and storage of it better to enable us to purchase the bulk of our milk this way.  I also made raw butter (see photographs) from the cream we collected from our raw milk (I followed the tutorial given by Jackie at Homestead Wannabes - Thanks Jackie!) and also with the last of the milk I made a sour soft cheese...which I was told tasted quite like blue cheese mixed with goats cheese but it was very pleasant!

I know that raw milk is very 'old hat' to you guys in America but I am so thrilled to be able to finally get my hands on some that I just had to share about it!  Though Irish readers please understand that I cannot reveal from whom we are buying our milk...sorry!


sarah in the woods said...

So glad you're able to get raw milk now! Has your milk been tested for TB and brucellis? If it has, I don't think I'd worry about waiting for the baby to be born to drink it. I just read Nourishing Traditions this summer, and it was talking about how important it is for pregnant mothers to be able to have really good foods such as raw milk, raw butter, fish, fatty beef, bone broth, etc. On the other hand, I wouldn't tell you to go against your husband. Just something for you two to consider. Maybe you could read the book together if you haven't already. I just read your breastfeeding post too. The first 2 or 3 weeks of breastfeeding are painful even if you and baby are doing everything right. If you can stick it out those first three weeks, the pain goes away. The nipples just have to get used to it.

Sarah said...

Sarah - As far as I know the milk is tested for both TB and brucellosis regularly; perhaps bi-monthly? Our dairy farmer deals directly with the only dairy milk purchaser within this he has to! Even ourselves who only possess 7-10 Aberdeen Angus (Beef Cattle) at any one time have to test ours once per year or our farm subsidies would be affected.

Thank you for also bringing 'Nourishing Traditions' to my attention...I think I have heard of it before through another blog? I will check it out!

Thank you also for your advice given on my request for nursing tips! I sure hope all goes much better as I certainly do not have time for preparing bottles this time around! ;)

Thank you for sharing your knowledge with me...I am so blessed by ladies such as yourselves! Hope you have a great day!

Erin said...

I love raw milk! When we lived in Co. Galway, John's co-worker's family owned a dairy farm in Limerick. So she'd bring us raw milk every now and then. When we moved here, I joined an organic co-op and I get raw milk, eggs and raw milk yogurt, from a farm about 30 min. from here, every 2 wks. A lady in the co-op drives out to this farm and get those items for everyone. So glad you found a source near you.

Cheesemakin' Mamma said...

I also drank raw milk throughout my pregnancy and after. My daughter was way healthier than my son (he was born prior to raw milk days). I also allowed my daughter to start drinking raw milk at one year of age.

You've heard of Nourishing Traditions because it was the book I was giving away on my blog. Sure hope you get a copy soon. It will change your thinking on so many levels. It changed my life!

So excited that you're making raw butter! Glad the tutorial was helpful. It always makes me so excited when I know someone else is enjoying the benefits of raw milk!