Author Topic: Fantastic yield with raw milk  (Read 1888 times)

Offline MrsKK

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Fantastic yield with raw milk
« on: April 21, 2012, 09:46:14 PM »
I am used to getting an average of 1 pound of cheese per gallon of milk when using my cow's fresh, raw milk.  Yesterday, I used 5 1/2 gallons of milk to make a Gouda.  There was no way I could fit all of the curd into my 6 inch wide, 8 inch tall mold.  Normally, I can push them down with my hand and get all of them to fit.  There was about a pound of curd left that just would NOT fit in the mold, though.

When I took the wheel out of the mold, I weighed it.  6.02 pounds.  And the curds had been contracted and fairly firm when I molded this cheese up, too.  I've had "fluffy" curds in the past, but that wasn't the case with this cheese yesterday.

The only difference is that I am feeding my cow no commercial grain blend anymore.  She is fed cooked corn, soaked beet pulp, and fodder - grain that is sprouted by soaking in water, then rinsing twice a day until there is a dense root mat and about 4 inches of growth on the top - plus she gets free choice hay.  She also just freshened about a week ago.

I'm very impressed with this yield.

Offline anutcanfly

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Re: Fantastic yield with raw milk
« Reply #1 on: April 21, 2012, 10:10:09 PM »
What fun! I hope it continues.  What is the temperature like where you are?  I started see the high yields as things got colder here.
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Offline smilingcalico

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Re: Fantastic yield with raw milk
« Reply #2 on: April 21, 2012, 10:32:23 PM »
Ahhhhh, the joy of raw milk, especially the seasonal and feed changes.
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Offline MrsKK

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Re: Fantastic yield with raw milk
« Reply #3 on: April 22, 2012, 12:20:35 PM »
It is slowly starting to warm up.  We had 60's and 70's in March, but April has been mostly 40's.  This past week - just since she calved - we started getting 50's.  This next week it is supposed to be in the 60's with sunshine. 

I'm going to ask on Keeping a Family Cow if anyone else has noticed such changes with putting their cow on fodder.  We are really seeing a difference in our feed bill, too.  Only about a third of what we used to spend on grain and commercial mixes.

Offline anutcanfly

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Re: Fantastic yield with raw milk
« Reply #4 on: April 22, 2012, 04:17:17 PM »
Keep posting as you find out.  I'm real curious how much is the fodder and how much the cold...
Early bird gets the worm, but the second mouse gets the cheese!

Offline Cloversmilker

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Re: Fantastic yield with raw milk
« Reply #5 on: April 22, 2012, 06:27:04 PM »
My Clover is has been giving me high yields since her calf was weaned last fall.  She gets free choice hay; orchard grass and alfalfa, a couple pounds of soaked beet pulp, and rolled grain (COB) with molasses.  Plus pasture of course.  She's due to calve again at the beginning of September; we'll see what she does next lactation. 

Offline DeejayDebi

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Re: Fantastic yield with raw milk
« Reply #6 on: April 22, 2012, 08:51:28 PM »
Way to go Karen!

Offline smilingcalico

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Re: Fantastic yield with raw milk
« Reply #7 on: April 23, 2012, 08:58:26 AM »
Oh, she just calved? There's your reason right there. Mama's milk is much richer to help get baby growing quick. Much higher butterfat. Good time to make creamier style cheeses.
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Offline MrsKK

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Re: Fantastic yield with raw milk
« Reply #8 on: April 23, 2012, 10:22:16 PM »
This is calf #4 and I've never noticed this before.  I am enjoying it, though.

Offline DeejayDebi

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Re: Fantastic yield with raw milk
« Reply #9 on: April 24, 2012, 10:09:43 PM »
Don't look a gift Clover in the mouth!

Offline MrsKK

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Re: Fantastic yield with raw milk
« Reply #10 on: April 25, 2012, 07:49:47 AM »
Oh, no, I'm not!  I made a Cheddar on Sunday and it weighed 6.08 pounds right out of the press.  Using 5 1/2 gallons of whole milk.  According to the Wiki table, normal yield for 6 gallons of milk is 5 lbs of Cheddar or Gouda.  I'm impressed!

Sadly, there was about a half cup of butterfat on the draining board.  I should have just scraped it off and used it for cooking with, but I didn't think of it before I was washing it off.

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Re: Fantastic yield with raw milk
« Reply #11 on: April 25, 2012, 09:04:20 AM »
That's a 12.85% yield.

5.5 gallons x 8.6 pounds/gallon = 47.3 pounds of milk
6.08 pounds of cheese / 47.3 = .1285 x 100 = 12.85%

That's very good, but not record breaking. :) What kind of cow?

The yield suggested in Wiki is:

6 gallons x 8.6 = 51 pounds
5 pounds of cheese / 51 = .097 x 100 = 9.7%

I average about 11% year round for mesophillic cheeses, so with good milk, that Wiki figure seems a little low.
The yield will be different for different types of cheese. Parmesan for example is much lower because of the small curd size and cooking.
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Offline MrsKK

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Re: Fantastic yield with raw milk
« Reply #12 on: April 25, 2012, 05:09:22 PM »
No, not record-breaking, but it is much better than I've had in past lactations.  She's 3/4 Jersey, 1/4 Holstein.

Offline DeejayDebi

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Re: Fantastic yield with raw milk
« Reply #13 on: April 25, 2012, 10:14:57 PM »
Great milk and a beautiful baby!

Offline MrsKK

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Re: Fantastic yield with raw milk
« Reply #14 on: April 27, 2012, 05:42:21 PM »
Baby is growing like crazy, too.  We're leaving her with mom, only separating them for 6-8 hours during the day, and she's gaining an average of 14 lbs per week.  I've had to loosen her halter three times already.

Our daughter has fallen in love with her and says she wants to learn how to milk when Etta becomes a milk cow.  That's two years away, so I'm not going to hold my breath!