Skagit Food Co-op blog:

the Cheese Whisperer

Local Caciotta is On Sale

Cheese made from local milk always has a story. Ferndale Farmstead’s Caciotta is handcrafted in small batches directly on the Wavrin family’s 3rd generation farm in Whatcom County. It has a rich, buttery flavor and a stretchy melting texture. Caciotta is now on sale at our Specialty Cheese Island for only $9.99 per pound.

caciottaNow available on our Specialty Cheese Island, Ferndale Farmstead’s family of fresh cheeses is made in the Pasta Filata or “stretched curd” style. The cheese is made under the watchful eye of 35 year veteran cheese maker, Italian-born Raffaele Mascolo. With Raffaele’s help and connection to his homeland, Ferndale Farmstead cheeses have been blessed with support from across the world, including special cultures and enzymes from a small Italian culture house and fine European cheese making equipment.

The Ferndale Farmstead dairy operates with a “closed loop system” philosophy, with its cattle grazing nearly year-round on grasses and pasture land. The herd is a mixture of Holstein, Jersey, Scandinavian Red, and Montbeliarde breeds. The cows are born on the dairy and taken care of by Kevin and his crew, under the supervision of licensed veterinarian Dr. Bill Wavrin.

Support local cows and farmers! It has a rich, buttery flavor and a stretchy melting texture. Use versatile Caciotta cheese to make memorable meals — from green salads; creamy sauce for vegetables, pastas, and pizza; to simple breakfasts of toasted cheese and fruit preserves. Or serve it simply on a cheese tray with bread and olivesOr serve it simply on a cheese tray with bread and olives.

Caciotta Bruschetta with Co-op Sausage

Recipe adapted from


  • 2 Co-op Handmade Mild Italian Sausage Links, without casing
  • 1 Crusty Baguette Bread, Cut Into 12 Slices
  • 1 1/2 cups Caciotta Cheese, shredded
  • 1 1/2 Tablespoons Fresh Sage, finely chopped
  • Cracked Black Pepper
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Directions:  Preheat oven broiler. In the meantime, heat a medium frying pan and cook sausage meat until lightly browned, about 5 to 7 minutes.  Stir and break up the sausage as it cooks. Place the bread slices on a baking sheet, and brown lightly under the broiler on both sides. Brush one side of each of the bread slices with olive oil. In a bowl, combine the cheese, sausage crumbles, sage, and cracked black pepper. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Cover each bread slice with the cheese mixture, then place the tray in the oven and bake until hot and bubbly, about 8 to 10 minutes.

By: Claire

ClaireClaire Harlock Garber loves to eat and drink and write about it. She has worked in the food industry for nearly a decade and was on staff at the Skagit Valley Co-op from 2010-2018, writing the regular columns Skagit Brew Corner, The Cheese Whisperer, The Bounty of Bulk, and What's Dippin' in the Well for the Co-op's blog, as well as articles for the Natural Enquirer newsletter.