To celebrate the wonders and benefits of this distinctively acidic, tangy cheese, Goats Cheese Day is celebrated every June 25 as a way to appreciate and bask in its wonders. From the humble crumbly feta to the thick, viscous halloumi, goat’s cheese is a popular type of cheese consumed across the world.
History of Goats Cheese Day
Goats Cheese Day was initiated in 1998 by the American Cheese Society and French goat cheese producer Bongrain — now named Savencia Fromage & Dairy. It was created to help raise awareness about the advantages of consuming goats’ cheese such as its health benefits and its distinctive flavor.
It is thought to have originated as far as 5000 B.C. in ancient Greece, where the goat is first domesticated. In its simplest form, the cheese is made by allowing raw goat’s milk to naturally curdle, thus resulting in its distinctively sour, tangy flavor. Because of this, the goat’s milk is responsible for shaping the taste of the cheese.
Its flavor is due to the presence of more medium-chain fatty acids in goat’s milk, which are less likely to be stored as fat in the body than regular cheese. Vitamins A, E, K, B3, and B6 are also abundant in goat cheese. Goat’s cheese does not melt in the same manner that cow’s milk cheese does when heated. The Alpine goat and the LaMancha goat are the most common cheese goat breeds today.
Chevre, or goat’s cheese, is a beloved delicacy throughout the world. Many countries have developed their own goat cheese varieties, with some becoming staple foods and national delicacies. Feta, halloumi, garrotxa, labneh, and bucheron are some of the most well-known goat cheeses.
It is also sold and eaten in a variety of forms and textures such as dry, hard, crumbly, and oozy. Thus, it is a versatile cheese to be consumed, as it fits well as part of spreads, dips, salads, sandwiches, and many others. Thus, Goats Cheese Day is a way to express our love for the delicacy that has colored millions of tongues with its unique flavor.
Goats Cheese Day timeline
Goat’s cheese is thought to have first been made in this period in Ancient Greece.
The Moors bring goats to France's Loire Valley and Poitou, kickstarting French goat cheese production and development.
Laura Chenel kickstarts the development of goat’s cheese production in the United States by bringing French cheese-making knowledge to farms in California.
The American Cheese Society and the Bongrain company establish Goats Cheese Day.
Goats Cheese Day FAQs
Can vegans have goat cheese?
Because cheese is made from milk, which comes from an animal, cheese is not vegan-friendly. However, there are many ways that ‘vegan-friendly’ cheeses can be made, such as substituting the curds with tofu.
Who invented goat’s cheese?
Goat’s cheese has been recorded as far back as Ancient Greek times. However, Greek myths say that the Greek God of cheesemaking Aristaeus invented it. Also, the Greek historian Xenophon, who was born in 349 B.C., had written about goat’s cheese being eaten for centuries.
Does goat’s cheese go well on pizza?
Goat’s cheese is a great topping for pizza. However, due to its strong, tart taste, one must be aware of what it pairs well with.
Goats Cheese Day Activities
Immerse yourself in its distinguishing flavors
There isn't a better way to celebrate Goats Cheese Day than by having some yourself! Goats cheese is a perfect garnish for salads, sandwiches, and spreads, and can add more kick to the flavor of whatever you're eating. Don't forget to share some with your loved ones as well.
Visit a goat cheese farm
Take a tour of a goat’s cheese production mill or farm to learn how it is made. Aside from learning how it is made, these tours would usually allow you to sample a taste of their cheese. Nothing beats fresh cheese, after all.
Make your own goat’s cheese
Why not try creating your own goat’s cheese at home if you're feeling adventurous? Getting some raw goat milk and allowing it to curdle spontaneously is all it takes. The curds should next be drained and pressed into shape. Making some yourself can help you appreciate the cheese even more, as well as the people who make it.
5 Delectable Facts About Goat’s Cheese
It has a relatively short production time
Goat’s cheese takes an average of three days to make.
Goats lactate productively at two years old
Goats start giving milk at around two years old and will produce up to 12 to 16 pounds of milk a day.
The average amount of milk needed
It takes about 100 pounds of goat’s milk to make around 16 to 25 pounds of cheese — depending on their milk production cycle.
Milk production duration
Goats normally produce milk for about four to five years, although some can be more productive longer.
Goat’s cheese is less fatty
Fresh goat’s cheese has only 60% of the fat and cholesterol found in cow-milk cheddar.
Why We Love Goats Cheese Day
It celebrates goat’s cheese
Goat’s cheese can be considered to be one of the most innovative, versatile foods out there due to its various forms and uses. You can consume it with both savory and sweet foods and it will still complement the dish well. The fact that a cheese — which is known to be one of the most strongly flavorful foods — can be so versatile shows how much of a culinary wonder it is.
It’s a staple of global cuisine
Not only is it versatile in use, but many countries around the world have adopted some form of it into their national dishes. For example, halloumi is a staple of Mediterranean and Middle Eastern dishes while a Greek salad is never the same without chunks of feta. This shows how much goat’s cheese is embraced across different cultures and how it has helped shape the culinary identities of many.
It appreciates goats
In the world of cheese, the humble goat tends to be looked over in favor of the cow. Nothing against cows, though, but it shows that they are not the only players in the cheese game. Besides, goat’s milk is consumed more than cow's milk in various countries outside of the Western world. Surely the goat should receive as much appreciation for their contribution to global diets as well?
Goats Cheese Day dates