At the county fair, one of the first places I head to is the nursery barn, hoping to see those cute little baby cows! Last year my daughter and I almost got to see a calf being born, but missed it by a few minutes. Mama was in very active labor when we arrived, but just like we human mamas, we have that baby when that baby is ready to be had! We checked back in a few hours and there on the straw was a skinny little calf resting from its journey into this world.
I am working with DairyGood.Org, a website where you can find all things dairy. They have just released a brand new cookbook, The Dairy Good Cookbook: Everyday Comfort Food from America’s Dairy Farm Families. This is the first book from dairy farmers and those who bring dairy products from around the world to your table to share wholesome dairy ingredients.
This book features more than 100 recipes that showcase the unique tastes and versatility of dairy – from cheese and yogurt to milk and butter. The book celebrates the nation’s more than 47,000 dairy farm families and their contributions to our American life.
As I read the profiles of the dairy farmers included in this book, what struck me most was that they were almost all multi-generational family farms. The children help out by doing chores around the farm. Some of the children have returned to the farm after having other careers in the city. One farm, which was started in 1875 in the countryside, now is next door to the city of Milwaukee, which has expanded in the 140 years the farm has been in operation.
In Moreno Valley, CA, about 1 1/2 hours from my home, is the farm of Brad and Sally Scott. California is in an epic drought period, but the Scott farm has learned to work around that. They use treated wastewater and rainwater to irrigate their crops. They grow 70% of the food the herd of 1,100 Holstein cows need. And they generate their own electricity with solar panels mounted of the feed shed. This century old farm is almost completely self-sufficient.
There are so many delicious recipes compiled in this cookbook from the dairy farmers themselves. One recipe I will be making soon is the Pumpkin Date Stack Cake with Mascarpone Frosting. Pumpkin puree is available year round, so I don’t think I will wait until fall to make it!
- 3/4 cup unsalted butter + more for pans
- 2 cups cake flour + more for pans
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
- 3 tablespoons molasses
- 3 large eggs
- 1 cup pumpkin puree
- 1/2 cup buttermilk
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 cup pitted chopped dates
- 4 ounces cream cheese, softened
- 4 tablespoons butter, softened
- 2 1/2 cups powdered sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 8 ounces mascarpone cheese, room temperature
- chopped pitted dates for garnish
- Preheat the oven to 350° F.
- Butter and flour three 8-inch round cake pans.
- In a medium bowl, sift the cake flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and salt.
- With an electric mixer, beat the butter and granulated sugar on medium speed for 3 minutes, or until light and fluffy.
- Add the molasses, blend thoroughly.
- Add the eggs one at a time, mixing well between each egg.
- In a medium bowl mix the pumpkin, buttermilk and vanilla.
- Alternately add the dry ingredients and pumpkin mixture to the butter mixture in three additions, beating on low speed after each addition until combined.
- Stir in the dates.
- Divide the batter between the prepared pans.
- Bake the cakes for 30 minutes, or until a cake tester inserted in the cake comes out clean.
- Place the cakes on a wire and cool for 10 minutes.
- Remove the cakes from the pans and cool completely.
- With an electric mixer beat the cream cheese and butter on medium speed, until smooth and creamy.
- Add the powdered sugar to the mixture slowly.
- Add the vanilla extract, mix well.
- Add the mascarpone cheese and beat until smooth.
- Place one cooled cake layer on a serving plate.
- Spread one third of the frosting on top.
- Repeat with the remaining layers.
- Chill for at least one hour.
- Garnish the cake with chopped dates before serving.
The Dairy Good Cookbook: Everyday Comfort Food from America’s Dairy Farm Families is available nationwide wherever books are sold or you can purchase online using the links below. And visit DairyGood.org to learn more about the goodness of dairy foods and the farmers who bring them to us.
Last but not least, there is a giveaway!
Though the Dairy Good Cookbook, dairy farmers share their secret (and not so secret) stories, traditions, and family recipes that have been passed down through generations. For a chance to win a copy of the Dairy Good Cookbook and a $75 gift card, share a dairy recipe or dish (made with milk, cheese and/or yogurt) with a story of how it’s passed down through the generations in your family, or is tied to a special tradition or occasion meaningful to you.
Learn even more about Dairy Good on social media.
This article is sponsored by Dairy Good. All opinions and text are my own.
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