Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Give Cheese a Chance

Clover's nestled in another bin of yarn, but this time it's the wool of sheep, not alpacas. She's visiting Vermont Shepherd, a nearby farm and farmstand with yarn, soap, lamb meat, maple syrup and sheep's milk cheese.

Clover didn't get to chat with the sheep. They were off in the pasture doing their sheep thing. She headed to the small hut that serves as a farmstand, 7 days a week, from 9 - 5.

New Yorkers and New England folk from NY, MA and CT go crazy over little farmstand shacks like this. It was packed full of people buying chcese, which Clover was happy to see.

Inside the shop you can sample the farm's different aged cheeses. They make some of the best cheese Clover's ever tasted.

Unfortunately, $23/lb for artisanal cheese is a lot for Clover, so she noshed on a few more bits of sample cheese and shuffled around the crowded farmstand to see what else they had in store. (You can shop for their sheep milk soap, cheese and yarn online here.)

Along with lamb meat ("not for me, thanks," says Clover) there's maple syrup (no self respecting Vermont farmstand is without its own maple syrup) and various local jams.

Clover was happy to see her friend's Quince Butter being sold! This Quince Butter is from Side Hill Farm who makes their jams the old fashioned way without pectin or artificial ingredients - just boiled down sugar and fruit. It's all lovingly hand stirred and Clover knows this for a fact because her friend Eric does the stirring! Pipkin's friend Domo has even gone in to help Eric work:

Good old fashioned sugar. Domo supervises moving in pallets of sugar to make sure no one steals any. do we know Domo isn't taking any?

"Domo, did you eat any of the sugar??"

"No! I swear!"

"We'll see..."

Hmm. Maybe we should have weighed him before. Okay, we'll give him the benefit of the doubt. He does seem to have cavity free teeth.

Domo was a big help putting lids on all these jars of jam. Side Hill Farm makes a wide range of delicious flavors, and not just jam and marmalade, but all sorts of fruit butters (like the Quince Butter Clover is sampling, above), drizzles for your pancakes and toast, curds for your pastry treats, hot and spicy spreads and maple syrup products (of course). You can buy gift baskets online here.

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