Have you ever wondered how from the simplest ingredients… Fresh milk, bacterial cultures, natural enzymes, and salt, …Come all the world‘s traditional cheeses?
My name is Charuth Van Beuzekom, and I am a cheese maker. Artisan cheese has a long tradition and history in my homeland of Holland, and I take great pride in carrying that tradition forward. I strive to find the “flavor of place” here in my home state of Nebraska. I love the artistry in how simple ingredients make such an incredible landscape of flavors and textures! Many things influence the flavor of a well-made cheese. The breed of animal from which milk is harvested, the diet the animal consumed, and the mineral composition of the soil where the plant species of a certain region flourish. Then consider the skill and artistry of the cheese-maker.
My husband Kevin and I, along with Kevin’s parents and our three sons, own Shadow Brook Farm. Our farm is located just outside the city limit of Lincoln, Nebraska. Certified organic since 1997, we grow a wide range of specialty vegetables, herbs, and cut flowers. We market our products through a 130 member CSA (Community Supported Agriculture subscription service), five local farmers markets, our on-farm store, and area restaurants and grocery stores. In an effort to diversify our farm economy we added a grade A goat dairy in 2006. Over the last six years I have made it my mission to learn by visiting artisan farmer producers all over the US and Europe, while also taking course work, making cheese, and submerging myself in cheese culture as much as I possibly can. Last winter I moved to London for two months to work at Neal’s Yard Dairy where I spent most of my time in the aging cellars learning about the curing process. Cheese making is incredibly rewarding; a beautiful symbiosis of science and art!
We are currently making cheese at a location off of our farm. We rent the use of a facility at the University of Nebraska food-processing Department. We are asking for your help in building an on-farm cheese processing facility. This has been a dream of ours for many years, something we are now ready to make a reality. In return we will reward you with the best of the Midwest: Hand made goat cheese from our pastures to your table.
Our cheeses are hand-made in small batches using our fresh goat milk
Fresh Chevre - soft spreadable with a lemony flavor
Belle Sabine - a soft ripened lactic curd goat cheese with a bloomy rind
Natalie in Gray- a full flavored lactic curd cheese with a layer of ash
Manon - a Camembert style goat cheese; mushroom and earth and milky goodness
Calypso - an aged Feta style goat cheese; salty and tart
Rosa Maria - a Spanish style cave-aged hard goat cheese; granular mix of sweet meadow grass and milk
Ogallala Tomme - a washed rind semi-soft goat cheese; brothy and smooth
We plan to build an 1100 square foot building attached to our farm store with a viewing window so our customers can watch as we make cheese. We will be constructing two processing rooms and three aging callers for curing different families of cheese. One will be for drying fresh soft cheeses such as Chevre, one for the soft ripened cheeses such as Belle Sabine and Natalie in Gray, and one for the aged hard cheeses such as Rosa Maria and Ogallala Tomme. The building also will include a changing room, office, dry storage area, as well as an equipment room for the boiler and recirculation tank. The funds we receive will be used for building materials for construction. We already have the equipment necessary to get started making cheese, and have been working with our state dairy inspector and building department on our plans. Now we just need to build the shell to house our equipment. We are dedicated to using environmentally conscious-building techniques such as using Insulated concrete forms for the exterior wall construction with a performance R-value of 35. The attic space will have spray urethane foam insulation as well to conserve on heating and cooling. We plan to use a recirculation tank to conserve water used in the heating and cooling of our 105-gallon cheese vat pasteurizer. We plan to collect and re-use all by-product whey from cheese-making to feed our pigs. We will compost all paper products and goat waste from our dairy barn.
We believe farming is a noble profession that establishes a partnership between the farmer and the natural resource base that supports them. Food is a common thread that all people share. We love real food that has a close connection with the land and our community. Just as it takes a village to raise a child, we believe it will take a community to build a cheese plant.
WE are asking YOU to be a part of our Community.
Thank you for believing in our dream
Charuth (a Dutch girl on the prairie) And the rest of the Loth family
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