Party Time at Ribblesdale Cheese!

Our celebration elevenses

Our celebration elevenses

I know, it is only Wednesday….and we were drinking champagne and orange juice at 10.30am!

We have been making goat cheese pretty much four days a week for the last 3 and a half months and it has been hard work, fitting in cow and sheep makes where we could and today, 31st August, is our last day making goat cheese for some time.

Our friend Trevor from Orchard Valley sent us some cake and cookie mix as he had been working on a big project, so we

The chocolate cake and cookies

The chocolate cake and cookies

were testers; I am almost ashamed to say that I have never made a cake out of a box before, but it was actually very tasty and Lydia said you wouldn’t be able to tell it wasn’t home made.  I think I agree with her, although it was alarming making it: I took the two boxes home with me last night as we have been saving them.  For the chocolate cake,  I added 2 eggs but then found that I didn’t have a jug at home that had mls graduated in small amounts (we do at work!) and I don’t have an electric hand whisk, so it got beaten with an old fashioned balloon whisk and adding the water was a bit of a guess.

As Lydia said, it’s like mixing a packet of dust with water.  The mixture seemed very sloppy and barely covered the bottom of the two cake tins it had taken me a couple of hours to find….but it rose and was soft and spongy.  I am amazed by the results, really chocolatey and moist and lovely.  The cookie box make was also weird: mix the dust with oil and water (yes, same problem), then roll it into a sausage shape, cut in half, and then each half in thirds, flatten down and bake for 12 minutes.  Amazing!

Lydia and Stu sharing a joke

Lydia and Stu sharing a joke

Anyway, we had lots of nibbles, some champagne kindly donated by Stu, with orange juice, a couple of salads, smoked salmon and parma ham.  Then of course, we had to have cheese and biscuits.  We chose our award winning Natural Rinded Goat cheese, Natural Rinded Cow cheese, Crumbly Goat, Smoked Original Goat and Wensleydale with garlic and parsley.

We toasted a hard three and a half months and one other thing that I can’t say until after Saturday.

We are all very tired and now it is time for Stu and Lydia to have some time off and we can relax a little and get back to normal (and tidy the cold room); we have been phenomenally busy – it will be a summer to remember.

 

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