Updates & Blog

Posted 1/17/2014 1:39pm by Kevin & Kristyn Henslee.

 



Happy New Year! Lots of random things going on around the Henslee household lately. The ewes are about a month away from lambing time. They have been moved into the barnyard and are being fed corn every evening to provide them with enough energy to finish out their pregnancies. Cows are at home and Winnie had a baby heifer calf last week. Porkchop is due next week. I’m hoping for another heifer calf, but I shouldn’t say that too loud. (I wanted Winnie’s calf to be a boy.) All the animals made it through the super-cold just fine. We put down a load of extra bedding and made sure the hay was great quality and kept the water troughs as ice free as possible. Now I am just trying to get caught up on bookwork and taxes before the lambs come. That’s amazingly exciting. And I also need to get back out to the make room and keep making our yummy cow’s milk cheese. I am going to try a few new things for the 2014 season—stay posted for the results from my trials and errors.


 



Kevin will be at the Shaker Market and Kristyn will be at Old Trail School this Saturday. Lamb, cheese and whole chickens will be available. The Wooster Pike that is ready right now is really great. Get out tomorrow morning and get some. All of our sheep’s milk cheese is sold out until June. Looking forward to start making sheep cheese again starting in March.


 



If you really love Ohio cheese, please check out the Ohio Cheese Guild. We are involved in this new group. The Mission of The Guild is dedicated to the support, education and promotion of producers of farmstead, artisan, and all fine cheeses in the State of Ohio, and the chefs and retailers who feature Ohio cheeses. To accomplish these goals, we aim to have a Board of Directors and general membership made up of diverse individuals. This includes cheesemakers, chefs, cheesemongers, enthusiasts, professionals, legal counsel and public relations/marketing specialists. Consider a membership—Friends of the Guild Memberships start at $60.

Speaking of Guild Members, our friend Brian Schlatter of Canal Junction Cheese won a 2014 Good Food Award with his delicious Charloe. Results are here. You can learn more about Brian’s cheeses on his website

And here is a fun little article about our friends at Kokoborrego Cheese Company.   


 

Are you looking for recipes to try? Featuring Yellow House Cheese? Look at this tasty little treat from Grilled Shane. Hit up the markets this weekend to find all the ingredients needed. 


 

We had some t-shirts made up. They are awesome, $14 and will be for sale at market this weekend. Represent!




 

While we are looking forward to 2014, we did take time to reflect on an awesome 2013. Here is what we came up with…

Top 10 for YHC in 2013
1) Winning an ACS award
2) Buying a new farm for our sheep to rotationally graze.
3) Being named one of the Top 10 local foods in Cleveland.
4) Meeting some awesome new market friends like Andy, Shane, John, and Erin.
5) Hearing feedback from our awesome market customers.
6) Working with great chefs who appreciate local and mean it
7) Being able to work with my girls on the farm everyday
8) Meeting more Ohio cheese makers and becoming friends. I love the spirit of the cheese makers in this state!
9) Realizing that you can learn many life lessons from working with sheep every day. I love my sheep, especially #98.
10) It takes a lot of work to bring handmade, local, tasty cheese and lamb to you all. Thank you for appreciating us and supporting our small business this year.

 

            
As always you can find us on Twitter @YHC_YellowHouse, Pinterest, Instagram and Facebook


Posted 12/19/2013 6:01am by Kevin & Kristyn Henslee.



Just a quick reminder that the store at the farm will be open tonight, Thurday from 4-7 for on-farm cheese and lamb purchases. We will also be open on Monday, December 21 and Monday, December 30 from 4-7. Remember that cheese makes a great hostess gift or a tasty appetizer for your party and family dinner this Christmas and New Year. 


There is also still time to reserve your Ohio Cheese Basket from Kokoborrego for pickup this weekend. Click here for info.


Just wanted to let everyone know that you can find us on facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest. Follow along to learn more about our farm.


Posted 12/10/2013 11:47am by Kevin & Kristyn Henslee.




Announcing Holiday Store Hours at the Farm

We have had many requests to buy our cheeses directly from the farm. We are announcing limited store hours at the farm for the holidays. We will be open Thursday evenings from 4-7pm on December 12 & 19, and Mondays December 23 & 30, also from 4-7pm. You can get all of your favorite Yellow House Cheeses, lamb, & chicken. I am also going to try to source some local eggs for sale as well. Store hours are for the holidays only.

Speaking of Lamb

We have processed the last of our 2013 lamb crop. If you want to stock up on shanks or chops, you should do that soon or you will be waiting until June for family raised, local lamb. Ground lamb should last us through late January or February.

Don’t forget the girls raised chickens this fall


Whole chickens are avialable for $4 per pound. It sounds expensive, but I promise you will never eat a more delicious bird. These birds were moved to fresh grass each day and were raised by Corinne & Ellen. Birds are 4-6 pounds and will feed the entire family with leftovers. Plus you can make up a small batch of yummy stock when you’re finished.

We Can Ship for the Holidays!

Send Yellow House Cheese to friends and family far and wide. Cheese can be cut to order and you can also include your favorite lamb cuts too! Call the farm to schedule your shipments.

Need a more complete package? Check out this link from our friends at Kokoborrego Cheese Company. They have put together a nice local basket and it even features our Wooster Pike Blue. Sign up for your basket soon.

Pasture Update—SURPRISE!


The ram obviously got out with the ewes this June because we were surprised with two sets of lambs this Thanksgiving. A set of twin ewe lambs and a single ram lamb are now bouncing around the barn. So cute! We are expecting the rest of the lambing to begin on Valentine’s Day.

New Farm Update


The fence is working out awesome. The ewe lambs are being rotated through the pasture almost every day. We’ve been cleaning out the bank barn for ewes to come in before Christmas. We supplement our ewes with corn in the last trimester to keep both the ewes and unborn lambs growing and warm, so it’s time to bring them in off pasture.


Did you see us in the Farm and Dairy? Check out the article here.

  • Two more markets before Christmas. Find us at Shaker on Saturdays from 8-Noon and at Old Trail School from 10-1. Cheese makes a great hostess gift! Or need to host your own party? Just throw together a wine and cheese tasting and you won’t even need to cook.
  • If you are looking for other local foods for the holidays, please send us a message. We’d love to recommend some of our favorite farmer friends for you to try.

Much love and peace from the Henslee’s


Posted 11/7/2013 8:55am by Kevin & Kristyn Henslee.

Fall is my favorite time of year. The chilly mornings, frosty grass, changing & falling leaves. I want to thank my Medina Farmer’s Market customers for a great season. We will not be joining you at the indoor market at the Moose, but you can travel out to visit us at our new indoor location at Old Trail School in Bath. This market is run by the Countryside Conservancy and you will be able to find anything you need all winter long, eggs, lettuce, cheeses, meats, bakery and more. Come out and visit us. The calendar of dates ishere and we plan on being at each market. Kevin will be out atShaker this weekend with both sheep and cow’s milk cheeses as well as lamb and chicken.


 

Our turkeys have all been sold for the season. I am so excited that so many of you are inviting a little piece of our farm to your dinner table this Thanksgiving. We are proud to grow healthy, happy birds.


 

The milking ewes have been with the dairy rams for long enough. We have moved the flock into one group and we are running a meat ram in with all the aged ewes at this point. Next year we are trying to be more prepared for the demand of lamb at our farmer’s markets. We hope that everyone realizes that we are honestly bringing you lamb at market. This is why our chops are smaller. We are not feeding out aged animals and calling it lamb, it’s honest to goodness lamb. Next year we are planning on more lambs available at more times of the year. With the new farm we will have the space to rotate groups more effectively to finish lambs as efficiently as possible.


 

If you ever follow our project progress you know that everything we do around here takes forever to finish. The fence at the new farm is complete. We will be electrifying it this weekend and putting in ewe lambs for breeding. We have a few gates to hang, but the fence itself is finished. Finally. Much thanks to Bob atGood Road Farm and Fence for all of his help.


 

Time for the soap box…

I’m so frustrated with Black Friday shopping and now opening stores on Thanksgiving. I think that families don’t spend enough time around the dinner table as it is, and now we are cutting into Thanksgiving?!?! Not in this family. It’s time to put values before commercialism.

I hope you agree.

I also hope you shop your local market before Thanksgiving. There will be a bounty of fresh vegetables, desserts and cheeses. You will find ingredients to make your dishes from scratch or already prepared pies and pastries from talented neighbors.

And continuing on the soap box…

People need to give more experiences and fewer gifts for the holidays. How do you do this? Less stuff, more experiences—shop local!

Think about getting a hand crafted cutting board, decadent pastries or a certificate to a restaurant or beauty shop. Live in the experience of cooking together, enjoying a glass of wine, sharing a night out or getting a fun, new look. Those are memorable experiences and that’s what we should concentrate on this holiday season.

Here’s a list of family and friend run businesses. I recommend each of them. It makes a difference when you shop local.

Crystal Sparks Photography

Coquette Patisserie                                      

Funky Junk

Hartzler Family Dairy

The Lake House Inn & Winery

Spice Kitchen & Bar

Sweet Violet’s Diapers

The Sycamore

Tangerine Parlour

Toast Cleveland

Whitefeather Meats

William A. Stenson

Winery at Wolf Creek

 

 

Posted 10/10/2013 7:39pm by Kevin & Kristyn Henslee.

 



Busy Saturdays

You know how some people say they are always soooo busy-- yet they have time to cook a gourmet dinner, their nails are properly groomed, their car is washed and they always have on fancy clothes? I aspire to be that kind of busy someday. But for now I am stuck being the kind of busy that entails doing a lot of random things around the house and farm and turning around and realizing it sure does seem like nothing really got finished. Truth is we rarely get our kids fed dinner before 8:30 pm and sometimes Kevin’s school clothes just have to be ‘clean enough.’

Saturdays are our busiest days. Kevin and I attend two different markets and the girls have soccer games and chores need to be done before market and then you have to remember to pack everything you may possibly need in the car before market and then you have to remind the girls that this may be the last time to go to the bathroom in hours if they don’t go right this second. And when I finally feel good about leaving for market and pull out of the driveway, I realize no one ate breakfast. Every single week.

We are that kind of busy every day.


 

This week is awesomely busy and I am looking forward to our jam packed weekend. You can find us on Friday night at West Point Market sampling our Yellow House Blue. Tickets are required for their afterhours tasting, so make sure to call if you are interested.

Saturday Kristyn will be at the Shaker Square Farmer’s Market with tasty lamb and yummy cheese. Cheeses are so tasty right now. Going to a bon fire or on a hay ride? Yellow House Cheese packs so nicely in a picnic basket and pairs nicely with the crisp, sweet apples that are so fresh right now.

Kevin will be attending the Say Cheese event in Chesterland on Saturday. Join the faculty and students of the International Culinary Arts and Sciences Institute, along with their cheese industry sponsors and affiliates, for a fun-filled celebration of the art of cheese-making. This interactive event will give attendees the opportunity to learn more about cheese through educational seminars, cooking and cheese-making demonstrations, sampling, and wine pairing. Tickets are required. Please check the website for more details.

Medina—I’m not sure we’ll see you this weekend. If so, the girls will be in charge of the booth. They will have cheese, ground lamb and buckeye necklaces. Ellen is saving up for an American Girl doll, that’s what she’s using her necklace sale money for. I am however pumped for the Halloween Harvest Festival on October 19. I would never miss that fun time!!

Chagrin Falls Farmer’s Market is one of my personal favorites. The town is so cute and the shoppers are extremely friendly and always give me really great feedback on how they’ve been preparing our lamb and pairing our cheeses. Kristyn and the girls will be at the Chagrin market this Saturday from 10-1.

Yellow House Cheese will also be available at the Great American Beer Festival in Denver, Colorado this weekend. Hit up the American Cheese Society table at the event if you are lucky enough to be travelling this weekend. Sample the award-winning Yellow House Blue.


 

You know who I love this week? Joe and Jen over at Toast. They feature our cheeses on the cheese plate, they are young, fun and obviously super fabulous. I just wanted to give a shout-out, congratulations on being named Restaurant Hospitality magazine’s 2013 Rising Stars. I urge you to support all of the great fine dining around Cleveland. Many local chefs are supporting small farms and local foods, Joe and Jen especially.


 

Did you know October is American Cheese Month? Support American cheese makers. I recommend Yellow House, Kokoborrego, Canal Junction, Mackenzie Creamery and Laurel Valley. Ohio is making some pretty outstanding cheeses right now. I personally know all of the farmers/cheese makers that I just mentioned and they are all worth exploring.


 

Still some room in the freezer? Whole and half lambs are still available. Same with Thanksgiving turkeys. There are about 7 left. Please get in your reservations quickly. I don’t want you to miss out.


 

And would someone please try this Shepard’s Pie recipe and let me know how it turns out? Everything necessary is in season at your local farmer’s market this weekend. It looks mouthwatering. Try Yellow House lamb, you will not be disappointed. We also have more lamb recipes on our Pinterest page.


 

Thanks again to all of my customers at the Highland Square farmer’s market. It was a fun market this year and I will see you all this winter at the indoor Conservancy market.


 

Random Farm Funny of the Week

   
This happened this week. It was butchering time for the latest set of broilers (raised by my sweet 8 & 9 year old). I went to pick up the chickens and forgot that I had to bring the crates back... in my car. Farm wife quick-thinking and some help from the guys at the chicken processor and I was back on the road with crates on top of the Subaru!! Oh, Kristyn.

Posted 9/16/2013 1:47pm by Kevin & Kristyn Henslee.


Time To Fill The Freezer!

Thanksgiving Turkeys are growing quickly. Cost for this year’s birds will be $65 per bird. Birds have been raised outside with new grass pasture given to them each day. The birds are grain fed with full access to outside. Plans are to deliver the bird’s fresh with pickup stops in Medina, Akron and the Shaker Square area. Twenty birds are available this year. . If you would like to reserve a bird, see the girls at market or drop us a line at cheese@yellowhousecheese.com.


 

The girls have been raising broiler chickens for 4H and have now expanded their operation for farmer's market. Whole birds are available at market for $4 per pound. All birds have been processed at a state-inspected plant and are frozen and vacuum sealed. See Corinne or Ellen at market to learn more about their chickens. The next batch will be available at the beginning of October. Discounts apply if you purchase 4 chickens or more.


 

Whole and half lambs. All lambs are raised by the family from our own flock. Lambs will be available by the half or whole starting October 7. Price will be $4.50 per pound, carcass weight. Processing costs approximately and additional $100 depending on your cutting instructions. Lambs will be delivered to our butcher free of charge. Reservations need to be placed now for whole or half lambs. Call 330.769.9733 or email cheese@yellowhousecheese.


 

 

Around The Farm:

We have been cutting some really nice cheese lately. I would love to hear your feedback on how you have been enjoying our cheese. Do you have any great recipes that you would like to share?


 

Breeding season is here. The flock is broken into 3 groups for the 2014 lambing season. Lambs should be arriving at the end of February.


 

Fall is my favorite season, hoodies, fires and beautiful leaves. Plans are to get the fence up at the new far, before the frost comes. Next will be the demolition of the existing milking parlor in order for renovations.


 

Farmer’s markets are starting to wind down. YHC really appreciates all of your support. You will continue to find us at the Shaker Square market year round. The Highland Square market ends October 3rd, Chagrin Falls ends October 20th and Medina ends on October 26th. We are planning to be at the Countryside Conservancy indoor market as well this winter.




Posted 8/28/2013 2:29pm by Kevin & Kristyn Henslee.


Labor Day Grilling
We appreciate all of your interest in our Yellow House Lamb. I am happy to report that lamb will be fully stocked for Labor Day grilling. Chops, ground and shanks ready for your weekend party. Find recipes on our Pinterest and check out the American Lamb Board.

 


New Farm Update
We have made our third cutting of hay on the new property. We are stockpiling up for the winter. It's a relief to know that there is food saved up for the sheep and cows. 

 




Turkey Time

The girls have been raising broiler chickens for 4H and have now expanded their operation for farmer's market. Whole birds are available at market for $4 per pound. All birds have been processed at a state-inspected plant and are frozen and vacuum sealed. See Corinne or Ellen at market to learn more about their chickens. We will also be offering Thanksgiving turkeys this year. Please reserve your bird as soon as possible. We are selling 20 birds for the holiday and will deliver to the market at Shaker before Thanksgiving and will have a drop off/pick up spot in Medina the weekend before Thanksgiving. If you would like to reserve a bird, see the girls at market or drop us a line at cheese@yellowhousecheese.com.

 



Sheep Pasture 

All the ewes are doing well. They are moved to new clover pasture every day to get ready for breeding season. This year we are splitting the flock into three groups, a meat flock, milking ewes and ewe lambs. My plan is to start lambing in January for our meat flock and probably keep lambing through May. Yikes.


 

Restaurants where to find us.
Looking for a date night? Check out the places where you can find our cheese. Spice Kitchen & Bar, Fire Food & Drink, Flying Fig, Toast, Crosswinds Grille, West Point Market


We appreciate all of the support. Please continue to spread the word to your favorite chefs, wine bars, specialty food shops and restaurants that you love Yellow House Cheese.




Posted 8/9/2013 8:29am by Kevin & Kristyn Henslee.



Surprise, Surprise! Guess who won an American Cheese Society Award? Yellow House Cheese!! I am definitely beyond excited and completely shocked. I feel like winning this award tells me that maybe all my hard work, frustration and anxiety are working in my favor. I joked with Jean McKenzie a few weeks ago before farmers market. She asked if she wanted me to bring back my awards when I won. Knowing it was a complete long-shot I laughed and said, “Please do.” Boy was I shocked as I was sitting in the show arena at the Medina County Fair waiting for Corinne to sell her chickens. My phone starts beeping, Brian Schlatter from Canal Junction Farmstead Cheeses sent me a message of congratulations on my second place award. I know Brian is much too serious about cheese to kid me, but it really didn’t hit me until Jean herself sent over a text also with congratulations. I looked over at Kevin and told him, he looked more shocked than I. It really has been an exhausting journey and I want to thank all of my customers for their kind words and support. Things are looking up here at Yellow House!!

 

 


Well it was a long week at the Medina County Fair and if you follow our blog & Facebook posts, you know that Corinne took almost every market project under the sun. We were busy every day with a show or a sale and thankfully made it through the week. Corinne did well with her chickens, bull calf and market goat. Kevin and I were so proud of her learning to show market hogs and learning how to dust off her jeans and her ego during beef showmanship (I tried to tell her it will not be the last time she gets drug around the ring). Many thanks go out to our buyers, the Sulzner & Synk families, Grandma Sheryl, The Young Family, WG Dairy, and The Guccion Family. Next year Ellen also will be in 4H so look out Medina County, she is all work and ready to show.

Kevin and I met during the fair so it definitely holds a special place in our hearts. My favorite way to describe the week is like a family reunion with folks you actually want to see. This is the one time of year that we get to visit with many members of our ‘fair family’. It is really fun to see that our kids will be showing together in 4H and I welcome the competition. It was fun to hang out with the Packard and Siedel families. We always say we’ll hang out, but we all know that we are too busy on the farms to ever get away for a night out.


Since we have stopped milking for the year, we are trying to head out to a few more markets during the week. You can now find us at the Cleveland Clinic main campus on Wednesdays from 10:30-1:30 and at the Chagrin Farmer’s Market on Sundays from 10am-1pm. I think we will be at these markets every other week, so check facebook for confirmation of where we will be. As always we will also be at Highland Square in Akron on Thursdays from 4-7pm, Medina Square on Saturday from 9am-1pm and at Shaker Square on Saturdays from 8am-Noon.


Lamb will continue to be available at market through the fall. I would love to hear how you are preparing your lamb for the dinner table. I get so many requests for suggestions; I would love to pass along your favorites.



Hoping for a sunny Saturday market in the morning, The Henslee Family



Posted 7/26/2013 5:03pm by Kevin & Kristyn Henslee.

Fair time is next week! Corinne has been busy getting her projects ready and Ellen has been furiously helping her. Next week she exhibits all of her animals and at the end of the week she sells all of her market animals. Here is her buyers letter, please consider coming out. The auction is a lot of fun and many of the kids use their money in their college funds and to start their projects for next year. If you have any questions, please track down Kevin or I and we will help you out. The auction is in the show arena at the fair grounds, you can't miss it!

 

 

My name is Corinne Henslee and I am a first year 4-H member in the Sharon Livewires 4-H club. I am 9 and am going into fourth grade at Norwayne Elementary School. I like to play soccer and read Harry Potter books. I am writing to tell you about my 4-H projects to let you know how you can support other 4-drfH’ers just like me at the junior fair livestock sale at the Medina County Fair.

The Medina County Fair runs July 29-August 4this year. I will be showing chickens, turkeys, pigs & a meat goat. I also have a steer and a lamb that I am entering in the carcass show the week before the fair. Each of my projects will sell at the livestock sale. I hope that you would purchase one of my animals to enjoy on your dinner table.

Me and my family have been taking good care of my animals. I always make sure they have lots of clean water and my parents help me feed them. We work as a family to raise Simmental cattle and we also have a sheep dairy and make blue cheese. We think it’s important for animals to be happy and be treated nicely. The meat from my animals will be delicious.

If you buy my animals at the fair they will be processed at a state inspected facility and will come back to you ready to eat. Chickens and turkeys will come back fresh and the goat, lamb, beef and pork will come back packaged and frozen. You can choose the cuts of meat and have it packaged just the way you like. I will show all of my animals before they sell. I will try my best to win ribbons. The turkey and chickens see on Friday night, August 2nd at 6:00 pm and the pigs, lamb, goat and steer will sell on Saturday, August 4 starting at 9:00 am.

If you have any questions about being a buyer you can call the 4-H extension office at 330.725.4911 or my parents at 330.990.7821.

My favorite part of the fair is riding the Ferris wheel and spending the night in the cow barn. I hope you and your family can make it out to the fair this year.

                                    I hope to see you at the 4-H Sale, Corinne Henslee

Posted 7/23/2013 9:50am by Kevin & Kristyn Henslee.

Last week was a killer hot week. So what do you do when it's constantly 90-100 degrees out? Make hay while the sun shines!

We were able to bale the second cutting off the new farm property. We had a little bit of trouble getting the hay dry enough to bale. The rain early in the week and the high humidity left the hay a tad damp. So we crossed our fingers and left the hay out to dry as long as we could. More rain was headed our way Saturday morning, so Friday late afternoon we started baling and got everything stacked in the barn before dark.

Here is a photo essay of the days work.