A dairy farm is a big deal to a city girl.
The suburbs have always been my home. I'm used to the sidewalk jungle, noise from the neighbors. Traffic on the streets. Three gas stations on every corner. A fence. But I can't help but cringe when I see a familiar, yet rare, field throw a 'for sale' sign up, and a strip mall move in to the place the field of flowers...fine...weeds, once grew.
Stores move in and set up shop. They come. They go. But those fields are lost forever.
Near my little suburban house is one of those fields that still stands in the middle of my metropolis, sans a for sale sign. I sigh inside EVERY time I pass the windmill, the fields, and the cows. I love it. There's a country girl inside me that wants the city girl to get lost in a craft store and leave us alone, and at peace in our 'field' of dreams...or rather, cows. Forget manicured lawns, it's not exactly like I excel in that area anyway. I want a lawn of weeds as far as the eye-can-see!
This is one of my last little slices of 'yesterday.' About a year ago I noticed a little field of cows (Jersey and Guernsey cows to be exact. Yes, I looked it up.). These cows opened up a small gravel road to their fields that leads to a small store that began selling their milk.
I had seen this farm's products, Lucky Layla's milk and yogurt spring up at some of the local specialty grocery stores, and now they sell it on site, it can't get much fresher than that! I have always wanted to stop. It's a mile from my house. I have no excuse. I have no excuse for the layer of dust on my furniture either...back to my adventure...
Last week, with expired milk to toss, and a recipe that required a fresh cup, I decided to FINALLY head out for the freshest cup I know of on this side of suburban society.
Count me as a fan now....really, I became their fan on facebook.
I pulled up in front of the little white store that houses their dairy goodies. Mama cows grazed near 'my windmill.' Milk cows chowed down in the yellow 'flowered' field, and a little nursery of baby calves watched me cautiously from their little 'houses.' I fell in love. I've been in love with things far worse than cows. I fall in love with inanimate objects all the time, so at least it's a species this time.
Forget the pony, I want a baby calf!
In addition to the quaintness of this little slice of peace in the middle of Plano, I was greeted by the most precious little guy (3 or 4 years old?) hanging out on the porch of the store as the owners (his family) carried new jugs of fresh milk to their fridges inside. My little friend on the porch asked me if I wanted to know what was in the cardboard box sitting next to him...
He found it that morning. He also had a plastic frog he had added to his box habitat to 'keep it company' along with some vegetation. His Mom told me that they had a 'catch and release policy.' This little greeter spends the day searching out these treasures, with the understanding they are released at the end of his play time. I tell you this because it's family run, family friendly, and just how shops, and companies should be!
I'd go back just for his company, but check out the innards of the dairy farm store.
I sampled this, and another cheese that tasted like Swiss. My taste buds just can't even begin to wrap themselves around 'fresh cheese.'
Yogurt Cheese and Butter
The yogurt cheese is probably the best thing I sampled. I'm going back for more. The owner gave me a few recipe ideas, and suggested filling tartlets with this yogurt cheese, and adding fresh fruit. It's amazing. It's won awards. If I were giving out awards, it would get mine too! I'm also going to try out this butter. They explained that in the spring the butter is a darker shade of yellow as the cows chow down on green grasses. Beta Carotene something something, science, something. I want this. I want yellow goodness. I'll get it! I'll get soon.
I'll take this whole stack, thanks. I tried this as well. This is also on my purchase list for my next shopping trip.
They have a ton of flavors of this drinkable yogurt. I'd buy it for the little bottle alone. I bought a banana flavor. It tasted much like I'd expect drinkable yogurt to taste, but it was definitely superior to the general store brands.
I bought a gallon. It's a little pricey ($8), but let's put it into perspective-it's fresh. It's raw (no dyes to change the color). It's no more than most specialty drinks at restaurants. It....is....so.....amazingly....delicious. I was prepared to perhaps twist the reality a little if I didn't like it because I love this farm so much, and the gal in charge was so sweet. I was going to tell you about my two favorite things-the caramel and yogurt cheese because I wasn't sure how I'd feel about this yellow milk.
And then I poured myself a glass.
Is this what milk taste like? Sign...me...up! I always liked milk fine, but it does have a tiny punch at the end when you get the store variety.
This is fresh.
Milk goodness in a glass.
Please go get a gallon. Get two gallons and swing one by my house, after all, I only live a mile away.
If you live near Plano, you must go to Lucky Layla's. The little farm is housed off of Jupiter, across the street from Oak Point Gym near Spring Creek. It's open from 9-6 Monday-Saturday. They take check or cash. The folks working the store were so friendly, and helpful,and gracious about me taking pictures. They took the time to explain their products and farm to me. They let me wander around. They said they can even show you where the cows are milked etc. Who knew? Milk really does comes from a cow (,but my meat...it still comes from the store, please don't tell me otherwise). How fun would this be for little kiddos? How fun would this be for less-than-little 30 year olds? Please go, tell them I sent you there b/c when I go again I'm hoping they will dole out more samples. I'm hoping there'll be a little boy with his box ready to show me his daily prize. I hope there are baby cows to greet me. I hope there are lots of tubs of caramel.
Tuesday, April 27, 2010
A dairy farm is a big deal to a city girl.