You may have noticed story in the Baltimore Sun this morning…about how many Maryland dairy farmers are on the edge of going under, because the price of milk has plummeted drastically…because of the combination of several global events. Now I know what you’re thinking…hey, I like the the fact that milk is cheaper….buzz off ! And while I get that, I think you’ll agree, the idea of family dairy farms going out of business, and families selling off entire herds and the land they’re on for yet more development is odious. It is to me anyway.
Chapel’s Country Creamery in Easton, is one such farm…the Foster family (Eric and Holly and their four children) are hanging on to their farm, by their fingernails. They had to sell two cows to slaughter already, and more may need to go. One bright spot for the Foster’s is Holly Foster’s brilliant idea to make artisan cheese…so one-tenth of their milk heads to Pennsylvania…because you can make raw milk cheese there…and the milk contains no antibiotics, no chemicals…just lovely fresh milk. They oversee the process from start to finish. Until I read the story, I had forgotten I bought some of Holly’s cheese at the St. Michael’s Food and Wine Festival last year….they sell their cheeses there, and at various farmer’s markets, and some stores, and some restaurants who are part of the local food movement (you can find where online or order online at the link above)….and let me tell you, the Chapelle Cave Aged Cheese was “udderly” delicious. Sorry.
So how about it? Make a difference in someone’s life today, and do yourself a favor at the same time. You and I can’t do diddly about the price of milk, but we can buy cheese from the farm. And help out a Maryland family when they could use it. And save a beautiful farm from more houses dotting the bucolic landscape of the Eastern Shore. And eat some fabulous cheese. Put some in that mac and cheese recipe I gave you last week. Moo.