Welcome to my blog, where I take pleasure in words and pictures, be they my own or those of others. I'm a creative individual, and the crafty side I explore on my 'other blog', Picking Up The Threads, which I hope you'll visit too. I'm sure you understand that I have sole copyright of my original work and any of my contributions, so please ask if you want to use them. A polite request is rarely refused. So, as they used to say on the BBC's 'Listen With Mother' radio programme, many years ago: "Are you sitting comfortably? Then we'll begin."

Thursday, 3 August 2017

The Goats of Lanzarote

Majojero goats roam the hillsides of Lanzarote and graze quite happily on vegetation found in our volcanic landscape. 


It’s our delight when walking or climbing volcanos, to see the goats, usually grazing in herds spread across the hills, or occasionally we are amazed to watch a lone goat nimbly leaping across the rocky terrain. The goats are well cared for and managed according to strict guidelines, in large farms, as these ones near the village of Uga.


We like to climb up the Femés Ridge and see the goats, especially when the kids have been newly born. Sometimes they get themselves separated from their mothers and emit a pitiful bleating - like this one filmed by my husband. The kid's mother was only a few metres away and he quickly caught up with her.







The goats are an important part of the island economy; the meat is used in stews and casseroles, but of course it’s the milk which is most important for the goat farmer, both as a drink and for making into a variety of cheeses. 














The island is dotted with goat farms many of which sell the produce from their dairy (quesería) at a farm shop, like our favourite in Femés, not far from where we live. 









The cheese is made from goats belonging to the Queseria Rubicón, and there are several varieties to choose from. We like the semi-curado (aged for about three months ) and the curado (mature for about six months). these are rolled in different flavourings  like pimentón (smoked Spanish paprika)  or gofio flour. 


If you buy a whole cheese they will shrink wrap it for you, ideal for visitors wanting a taste of Lanzarote to take back home.

The annual Fería del Queso in Playa Blanca

We have annual food fairs called Fería del Queso y la Cabra ( Cheese and Goat Festival) where it’s possible to buy a book of tickets - each worth a euro - and exchange them at the many cheese, wine and tapas stalls. There are also cooking demonstrations and stalls serving from huge paella dishes. There is live music and happy, celebratory atmosphere. Combined with our almost endless sunshine, needless to say the fairs are popular with tourists and residents alike.


Examples of some of the tapas we can exchange for a ticket. My daughter is pointing to the Queso Blanco or Queso Fresca, a young cheese, sometimes made with a mixture of goat and cow milk and served, as here with sweetened gofio slices.


The white cheese is also a main ingredient of a typical Canarian Salad, consisting of cheese, beef tomatoes, sweet white Lanzarote onions, dates and sweetcorn. 

Homemade Canarian Salad; easy to make and delicious to eat with olive oil, black pepper and crusty bread

In true Sepia Saturday tradition I have to include an old photograph. This one appears in several places around the island, often enlarged and used to decorate the walls of restaurants. I found a copy in Villa de Teguise in a traditional style restaurant called Cafetería Cejas. A caption from me would be superfluous as I think I’ve milked this subject long enough. Instead click on the link to see what other contributors made of our sepia prompt picture this week.


21 comments:

  1. Oh my goodness, do you rhink the baby is really drinking straight from the goat? Lovely goat photos and video. Lanzarote looks like an idyllic place to live.

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    1. That baby probably had a very healthy gut microbiome.
      Idyllic is the word.

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  2. A grand collection of goats - is there a collective noun for them? A gaggle of goats? The goodies look very tempting!

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    1. Sue, it’s ‘herds’ - looked after by goatherds I guess; like one in the song in the Sound of Music, though no yodelling here.

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  3. I really like goats cheese.
    I believe you have flocks or herds of goats but tribe also seems to be acceptable.

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    1. Tribe is a new one on me Anne; I’ve always used herds.

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  4. Not a fan of goat's milk (remember, I lived on a Jersey dairy farm!), but love the variations of markings/colorings in your second photo! (And, by the way, your heading graphic makes me think of the tile game "Bananagrams..." do you know it?)

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  5. Another great match for the theme. We have an urban farmlet near us that has about half dozen goats which my dog has yet to figure out. I think goat kids are the cutest of baby animals!

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  6. We have a flock/herd/tribe on the acreage next to us. There must be fifty at least. Often we hear that lost baby bleating cry. You can almost feel the panic and alarm in the voice. The salad sounds delicious. Who would think of combining dates and sweet corn? Wait...of course it would be people with an abundance of dates and sweet corn. Living on an avocado grove, I would add a few slices.

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    1. Oh I love avocado - now my mouth is watering.

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  7. I Didnt notice the baby at first! (S)he grow up a strong Kid!

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  8. More than once you've convinced me you are living in a heavenly place. And I'm fascinated by your volcanic rock because it is so different from what I'm used to.

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    1. Oh it is, every day is another day in Paradise.

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  9. That is a good looking herd of goats. Wondering if that was an everyday, every hour thing, the baby nursing from the goat.

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    1. Yes, it’s a talking point that one.

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  10. The goat hooves are so amazing. The climb on the slightest about of ledge without any fear. Goat cheese is popular and I guess I really don't know when I am eating it. One place where we eat use to have it on a salad that they have not stopped selling. Lots of goats in that one yard.

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    1. That’s just a corner of the yard - they wander all over the place.

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  11. I am so yearning for a bite of that salad...and the other delicious dishes. If ever I would visit, I'd want to do it during your festival with all the tastes!

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