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FOOD + DRINK
Bellwether Sheep Milk Yogurt
FOOD + DRINK
Bellwether Sheep Milk Yogurt
A creamy yogurt artisanally made from sheep's milk in Northern California
by Karen Day
on 18 March 2010
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Crafted on a small family-run farm in Sonoma County, CA, Bellwether Farms' creamy sheep milk yogurt makes a tasty and healthy substitute for both standard cow milk varieties and other alternatives. Since the protein in sheep milk more closely matches human breast milk, it's easier on digestion than cow or even goat milk yogurt.

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Bellwether Farms raises their East Friesian sheep (a prolific and lean European breed commonly used to make cheeses such as Manchego, Ricotta, Feta and Pecorino Romano) on natural pasture, grains and sprouts. The resulting naturally homogenized sheep's milk contains no antibiotics or growth hormones and, thanks to the higher density (about 50% more) solids, the yogurt has a thicker consistency, more calcium, protein and as one of their farmers recently told us, more "better for you fat."

Those familiar with traditional Greek yogurt (not cow milk versions sold in the U.S.) will recognize the taste of the milk's make-up, which also lends a natural sweetness to the plain variety Bellwether produces. But, working with an Oregon producer that counts Bellwether as their only food manufacturer client, their deliciously fruity flavors—strawberry, blueberry, blackberry and vanilla—rank high above others who use "fruit preparations" that often list their first ingredient as water.

Bellwether Farms sheep milk yogurt and artisanal cheeses sell stateside at sustainably-minded retailers.

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