Steve and Veronica Baetje have been making cheese at Baetje Farms in the foothills of the Ozarks since 2006. The Baetjes keep a large herd of Saanen dairy goats, and produce cheese along with several employees.
The day's milking begins each morning at 4 am, and the rest of the day is spent turning that milk into cheese, shipping cheese, handling sales calls and making local deliveries. Goats receive an unlimited supply of filtered spring water to drink from the farm’s spring, and their diet—an all-natural antibiotic-free whole grain ration—is supplemented with organic herbal teas, mineral supplements, locally grown alfalfa hay, and the farm’s pasture. The milking season begins with the birth of spring kids and each doe receives a rest in the winter, giving the goats a break for several months a year.
Miette is a French-inspired bloomy rind cheese made from a blend of goat and sheep’s milks. Drained without pressing and dry salted, the cheese is aged only two weeks and is semi-soft when sold.
Miette is creamy, mild, sweet and slightly mushroomy, with a melt-in-your-mouth consistency much like that of a baked cheesecake.