Got Milk?? Yes I do and lots of it. I get 2 quarts of delicious, creamy goats milk a day. I milk 2 of my 4 goats every morning and they each give me a quart. I could get more if I milked them again at night but right now I’m fine with what I’m getting so I leave it at that. My freezer drawer is full of quart bags waiting to be made into soap and my fridge has 5 quarts of fresh milk on the shelf and I’ll get 2 more tomorrow. I figure I better learn what I can do with all this milk and I better learn fast!
The first thing I did was learn how to pasteurize my goats milk. Pasteurizing the milk extends its shelf life and makes it safer for drinking. It isn’t hard to do at all but it does take time. Basically you heat the strained milk to the correct temperature and then cool the milk to the correct temperature. The key is to cool it fast. Once I had that mastered I moved on to bigger and tastier things. Like Cajeta!
Cajeta is a sweet creamy Mexican caramel sauce made from goats milk. You can use cajeta just like you would use any caramel sauce, drizzled over cakes, cookies, ice-cream or eaten straight off the spoon and out of the pot. What? You think I’m kidding? Basically it is made by reducing and caramelizing a mixture of milk and sugar. You can leave it as is or add different flavorings like vanilla, cinnamon, maple flavoring, almond extract, rum or coffee liquer. Oh the possibilities!!
- 1 quart of goats milk
- 1 cup of sugar
- 1/4 tsp. baking soda
- * 1 Tbsp. cornstarch (optional, it makes a thicker syrup)
Stir the baking soda and cornstarch into a small bowl with a little bit of goats milk making sure to dissolve any lumps. Pour the remainder of the milk into a pot with the sugar and stir to dissolve. Add the baking soda mixture. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring constantly. Maintain a steady heat and continue stirring. As the mixture thickens it will begin to take on a caramel color, now is the time you want to make sure you stay right where you are and stir, stir, stir because it can stick to the bottom of the pan and burn if you aren’t careful. Continue cooking until it reaches the desired consistency, thin enough to pour, but remember that it will thicken as it cools. This can take close to 45 minutes. Stir in any additional flavorings and pour into a jar, use warm or refrigerate for later (yea right!). 1 quart of milk makes about 1 cup of sauce.
I’m thinking cajeta would make a great gift for that someone special on your list this year. Just boil some canning jars, lids and rings for 10 minutes to sterilize them. Pour in the hot cajeta, wipe any drips from the openings of the jars and close. Cover the jars with a heavy towel and leave them undisturbed until the lids seal. You will hear the lids “pop” when they have sealed. Add a ribbon and a spoon…Enjoy!!
* P.S. I made this twice, once with the cornstarch and once without. I liked it better without the cornstarch because it really thickens up nicely on its own. I also cooked it with a vanilla bean and a cinnamon stick the second time I made it and the cajeta was amazing.
P.S.S. I’m thinking of naming our new momma goat Cajeta. The name means “caramel” and she IS the color of caramel and she IS just so sweet. Makes sense to me!
P.S.S.sst’ …. I just had a thought…. on top of warm gingerbread and vanilla ice-cream! Can you imagine?!!!