I, Locavore: Bobolink Dairy’s Duck Fat Ciabatta and Cheddar


Nina and Jonathan White own a 200-acre farm in Vernon, New Jersey, where they raise about 30 mixed breed cows, including the Bobolink Black, a result of crossing modern dairy breeds (like Jersey) with Irish Kerry cattle. The cows graze on pasture, are milked seasonally, and the Whites use the resulting raw milk to make several kinds of cheese. The couple also bakes an assortment of breads in an old-fashioned, wood-fired oven, and they peddle both the cheese and breads at the Union Square Greenmarket on Fridays.

Of all the breads the Whites are selling today — including one with flax seed, and one with caramelized red onion — the duck fat-roasted garlic ciabatta sounded the best. And it is just as good as it sounds — rich, golden, and chewy, with an undertone of ducky funk. And they’re also offering about five different cheeses, including one with a Belgian-beer-washed rind, and one that’s been aged in Zinfandel lees. Then there’s a marvelously sharp, buttery cheddar, from a newly released, cave-aged batch. Together, the cheese and the bread are all you need for a stellar locavoric lunch.