Thursday, May 20, 2010

Indiana Goats & A Farm Called Capriole

When Mike and I made the move from Indianapolis to Columbus, IN our intent was to locate a small farm for me to run.  I wanted to do the usual gardening and canning and mix in some chickens and goats. As it turns out we purchased a house in town with a swimming pool and an ordinance against barnyard animals. I often wonder if we did the right thing but for now I am content. We spent last Sunday going to an open house at a place called Capriole.  They make farmstead cheeses from their goat herd. They purchased the land in 1976, the year I graduated from college, and have grown their business selling cheeses across the United States. If you have a Whole Foods close by you can try Capriole cheeses.

The farm is located in Greenville, IN about 125 miles south of Indianapolis and a stones throw from Louisville, KY. The view on your left shows their residence.  Upon our arrival we were treated to three selections of locally brewed beer and several selections of fresh goat cheeses. We had made reservations for a lunch that consisted of a mixed grill of Capriole (I'm talking goat sausage) and Fiedler Farm sausages. (Fiedler Farms website is incomplete but they sell grass fed beef and grass-fed lamb in Rome, IN.)  A spring potato salad with asparagus and goat cheese topped with a mint vinaigrette and bread from the Blue Dog Bakery located in Louisville, KY. Desert was a strawberry rhubarb short cake with Grand Marnier Chantilly. Although the weather was cool and rainy we throughly enjoyed our meal while seated under a large tree and sharing a bottle of Starborough Sauvignon Blanc from New Zealand.  We could have done a local wine but I'll let you in on a little secret - Indiana does a lot of things well but wine in not one of them!
After lunch we made our way around the lovely landscaped lake towards the barns that housed the star attractions - Goats!

Here is a selection of what we got to see.

They call her #60                                                                                                        


Anybody got any food?

The recipe I selected for today's post comes from the August 2007 issue of Cuisine Magazine.  It can be a side dish or an appetizer. 

Marinated Tomatoes and Goat Cheese

  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 6 torn fresh sage leaves
  • 1 T. chopped fresh rosemary
  • 1 T. chopped fresh oregano
  • 2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup panko bread crumbs
  • salt and pepper to taste 
  • 1 roma tomato cut into 4 slices
  • 4 slices of goat cheese (chevre) from 1/4" to 1/2" thick
Combine oil, herbs and garlic for the tomatoes in a shallow baking dish. Toss panko, salt and pepper in a second shallow dish.

Season tomato slices with salt and pepper, then coat tomatoes and goat cheese in oil-herb mixture.

Dredge both sides of goat cheese in crumbs and arrange on tomato slices; transfer tomatoes to a baking sheet. (You can use the left over oil mixture to marinate pork or chicken if you like)

Broil tomatoes and cheese until crumbs are golden, 1 to 2 minutes.  

The amazing thing is that the cheese will not melt - it just becomes creamy and will melt in your mouth. It doesn't melt because it doesn't have the high fat content that other cheeses have.

If you have the time take a look at the Capriole web site.  They list many recipes using goat cheese some are savory and some are sweet - they all sound delicious.  You can also purchase their cheeses on-line for yourself or as gifts.

Life is good - enjoy!

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