Once kidding season is underway and milking resumes, our breeding bucks are shifted to a “bachelor pad” paddock somewhere far away from the girls. For most of the spring, they have been set up in the shaded area in front of our house. When we finally took ownership of our new farm, the old barn there, surrounded by lots and lots of “weed trees” and grasses, seemed like a perfect summer residence for the boys.
Little by little, we’ve been chipping away at cleaning out over 100 years of dust and rusted farming history from this gorgeous (but neglected) timber-frame barn and setting up the hot-wire fencing for the browse pasture. At last, the new digs were ready. Yesterday, the short migration from home farm to new ensued. Erica and Patti led at the front, enticing the boys to follow the mowed path through foreign ground with fig newtons (works every time—better than grain). Rik and Lentil, the oldest bucks, led the way, followed by Jasper & Zircon, the yearlings. The two youngest bucklings, Elvis and Joe Diffy, brought up the rear, calling and looking back to the Dan and Megan for constant reassurance. Despite some hesitation, they seemed eager to make the trek to their new digs. Somehow, they must have sensed the endless honeysuckle that awaits them.
Summer Insect Appreciation: The beneficials, from dragon flies to baby monarchs
Victory Cheese-Choose it OR lose it!
We have sold close to 150 “Rick Bayless All-Illinois” Victory Cheese Boxes. We appreciate your support, and we hope you have enjoyed the cheeses and their accompaniments.
While we are putting the pieces together for our next “Victory Cheese Box,” you can still get our Rick Bayless-All Illinois Box. The box features three Illinois farmstead cheeses (Prairie Fruits Farm & Creamery chevre, Marcoot Jersey Creamery sharp cheddar and Ludwig Farmstead Creamery Kickapoo). You can add a “More Mexican Cooking Everyday” cookbook signed by Chef Rick Bayless himself! You can either pick up your box at the farm (please pre-order through our online store) on Saturdays, 1-4 pm OR you can have it shipped. We just got a new allotment of signed cookbooks, so grab one of these while they last.
Raw Milk Sales Begin at the Farm
We are excited to announce that we received our state permit to sell raw goat milk at the farm!! Starting this weekend, you can buy half gallons of our delicious milk for $9 (this price is comparable to grocery store goat milk that is: a) not local and b) not nearly as tasty and refreshing as our milk. You can either pre-order from our online store to pick up on Saturdays from 1-4 pm OR you can purchase during open hours on Sundays, 1-4 pm.
Urbana’s Market at the Square-Don’t let the hot weather slow you down!
We’re expecting another hot and sticky weekend, but a simple cheese board with cold beverages is just the ticket for an easy meal that can be enjoyed outside (or in the comfort of air conditioning). We continue to offer a bounty of cheeses-from light and tangy fresh chevre to feta to bloomies to raw-milk. We have SOO much cheese this week, we’re hoping you all come out and buy lots.
The Urbana Market has modified it’s COVID-19 related restrictions starting this weekend. They still require social distancing, and both patrons and farmers must wear masks at all times. The main difference is that patrons will now be able to select their own produce. Our market stand practices will remain the same. We have a Square card reader set up for you to swipe your card for payment. If you bring cash, we will give you change (and sanitize our hands between transactions). Gelato pints are ONLY available through online farm store sales/farm pick up.
Here’s the cheese line up for this weekend:
Pelota Roja—raw milk “Manchego style” hard cheese with a guajillo chile-olive oil rub on the rind $7/wedge
Blushing Goat- washed rind with a Peach-Bourbon Kombucha beer; gooey, oozy and delicious
Available in two sizes—rounds weighing approximately 7 oz. for $13 each; squares weighing approximately 8-9 oz. for $15 each
Fresh Chevre $8/each
--herbs de Provence
Seasonal chevre flavor of the week: Fresh chive and lemon zest! The chives have grown back in the herb garden, so why not make more of this delicious flavored chevre! $9/each
Angel Food-our little “crottin” style bloomies—$9/each
Little Bloom on the Prairie—our goat milk camembert $11/each
Black Goat: our ash-ripened bloomy; VERY YOUNG but tasty $10
Fleur du Prairie-bloomy rind cheese adorned with dried herbs and edible flowers; beautiful AND delicious $11/each-VERY YOUNG TOO
Goat Milk Feta—aged in whey brine, tangy with a creamy-crumbly texture PERFECT for salad season! $7 each
Other Opportunities to Purchase Our Products
If you’re not able to buy our cheeses in person, you can order online for shipping. We ship on Tuesdays and Wednesdays each week. There are also lots of retail establishments throughout central IL and the Chicagoland area that carry our cheeses.
Farm Open Hours and Offerings this Summer
If you can’t make it to the farmers’ market, no worries. You can order online by 10 AM Saturday for Farm Pick-Up between 1-4 pm.
Gelato pints are available for farm pick up ONLY-new flavors this week include Vanilla, Chocolate (limited), Fresh Mint, Anise Hyssop, Salted Caramel Swirl and Nectarine Sorbetto (made with Mileur Orchard Nectarines).
We will be open this Sunday afternoon, July 19th to visitors, with some restrictions. From 1-4 pm, you can peruse our farm store, enjoy a cup of gelato or a cheese board with wine/beer/other beverages under our pavilion, visit with the goats (no petting, just viewing) and just enjoy the rural outdoors. All visitors must wear masks and practice social distancing while visiting the farm. We’ll be featuring ALL OF OUR CHEESES for sale during open hours. Consider getting a simple cheese board with blushing goat, warm baguette and a Unity Vibration Peach-Bourbon Kombucha beer!!
A lot of folks are wondering about farm tours, events and dinners on the farm. We have decided to put those on hold for the next few months to keep everyone safe. We hope things will be better in the fall, and if so, we plan to schedule a couple of special cheese tastings and farm dinner events then. Regarding our orchard, there is not be enough fruit for u-pick this year, but you will be enjoying whatever fruit we get either through the farm store or in the forms of jam or gelato.