‘‘Really satisfying’’: Margarita Carrick with some of Pine End Organics’ cheeses, which they make at their Belimbla Park farm. Picture: Jonathan NgFor food lovers, Pine End Organics is the organic pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. Kerrie Armstrong dropped in to have a look.
NESTLED in a copse of trees in Belimbla Park is a foodie magnet for Sydneysiders and locals alike.
Pine End Organics produces organic fruit and vegetables, eggs and honey and its bed and breakfast attracts city dwellers with the promise of a weekend away in the country, just 80kilometres from the big smoke.
But owner Margarita Carrick offers an unusual point of difference for her visitors — the opportunity to learn how to make cheese.
‘‘Making your own cheese is really satisfying, like anything you do for yourself,’’ Mrs Carrick said.
‘‘You know what’s in it, just like when you are cooking from scratch.’’
Mrs Carrick has been making cheese for about 10 years and teaching others for about eight years.
She offers two levels of dairy workshops: the introductory workshop, which covers how to make fetta, ricotta and butter, and the advanced workshops, which cover camembert, quarg and yoghurt.
The process for all the cheeses begins with raw milk, which Mrs Carrick said could be difficult to get, but could, at a pinch, be substituted for organic homogenised milk.
‘‘I have a few different sources for raw milk.
‘‘It has entered our thoughts to get a cow ourselves, but there are lots of local people who have cows and the amount of milk is too much for one family.’’
Once the milk has been sourced, Mrs Carrick pasteurises it and adds a starter culture, to replace good bacteria that is lost in the pasteurisation process, which converts the lactose in the milk to lactic acid.
Rennet is then added to set the mixture into curds which are then cut into small cubes.
‘‘Then the process is different for every cheese,’’ Mrs Carrick said.
Pine End Organics sells its ricotta and quarg along with home-grown eggs, honey, fruit and vegetables — all certified organic.
Mrs Carrick said this organic certification was hard fought for and took dedication to maintain.
She said farmers and producers who claimed to be organic but flouted regulations risked damaging genuinely organic produce.
‘‘Organic certification is a four-year process.
‘‘If someone has a bad experience [with produce falsely labelled organic] it tars us all the same.’’
■ What: Pine End Organics
■ Where: 35 Binalong Road, Belimbla Park
■ Details: 46572176, [email protected]苏州美甲美睫培训学校 or visit www.pineend苏州美甲美睫培训学校
■ Introductory workshops: fetta, ricotta and butter — $135
■ Advanced workshops: camembert, quarg and yoghurt — $150
■ Morning tea and lunch are included and comfortable shoes and clothes are recommended
■ Workshops are particularly fun when done with friends or family
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