The information below has been supplied by dairy marketers and other industry organizations. It has not been edited, verified or endorsed by Hoard’s Dairyman.
The Crave family is continuing its award-winning streak for Crave Brothers Farmstead Cheese. Their latest honors come from the 2018 Wisconsin State Fair Dairy Products Contest, where they stacked up First, Second and Third Place Awards. Crave Brothers Farmstead Classics Marinated Mozzarella won a First Place Award, with Second Place honors going to Crave Brothers Mascarpone, and Third Place for Crave Brothers Oaxaca. Crave Brothers Farmstead Cheese is made with milk from the family’s own dairy herd in a farmstead cheese-making facility.

Crave Brothers Marinated Mozzarella comes in the form of ciliegine (cherry size) mozzarella balls marinated in a blend of olive oil and canola oil. The marinade features a custom blend of Italian seasonings, along with garlic, crushed red pepper and black pepper. Earlier this year, Crave Brothers Marinated Mozzarella also took First Place honors in the World Cheese Championships. Marinated Fresh Mozzarella is ideal for adding to antipasto appetizer kabobs, and also enhances salads and pasta dishes. Crave Brothers Fresh Mozzarella comes in a variety of forms. In addition to Marinated Mozzarella, choices include medallions, 8-ounce and 1-pound balls, 1-pound logs, containers of small mozzarella balls in four sizes, and curd form mozzarella.

Recipe winners in the 2018 Crave Brothers Farmstead Cheese recipe contest demonstrate the versatility of Fresh Mozzarella. In the Professional Chefs’ division, Kristina Vanni of New York City featured Crave Brothers Marinated Mozzarella in her Second-Place Award-winning recipe for Italian-Style Shakshouka with Fresh Mozzarella and Marinated Crostini. Her recipe spin on the classic North African dish of shakshouka—traditionally made with eggs poached in a sauce of tomatoes, peppers and onions spiced with cumin—incorporates Crave Brothers Marinated Mozzarella melted into the warm tomato sauce. She also brushes the accompanying toasted crostini with the herbed marinade before baking. In the Consumer recipe contest, Donna-Marie Ryan of Topsfield, MA, won Third Place Prize for her Scrumptious Summer Blueberry Mozzarella Wild Rice Salad, made with Crave Brothers Fresh Mozzarella, fresh blueberries, salad greens, chilled wild rice and blueberry vinaigrette.

Crave Brothers Farmstead Classics Mascarpone adds it Second Place Award at the 2018 Wisconsin State Fair Dairy Products Contest to an impressive list of 30 previous awards. Crave Brothers Mascarpone contributes a fresh, sweet cream flavor and velvety texture to everything from dips to desserts. Use it to create easy summer recipes such as Mascarpone-Filled Strawberries and no-bake Crave Brothers Chocolate Mascarpone pie. For the pie, fill a prepared chocolate cookie crumb pie crust with 16 ounces of Crave Brothers Mascarpone blended with 6 ounces of melted semi-sweet chocolate. If desired, add 2 Tablespoons of Amaretto or Kahlua liqueur to the filing. Cover and chill the pie for one hour before serving.

Crave Brothers Oaxaca is an award-winning fresh Hispanic-style melting cheese, named for a state in Southern Mexico. Crave Brothers Oaxaca earned Third Place honors in this year’s Wisconsin State Fair Dairy Products Contest. Oaxaca is a popular cheese for sandwiches, quesadillas and wraps, but it also lends itself to experimenting with grilled foods.

Licensed cheese maker George Crave oversees the making of all the Crave Brothers handcrafted artisan cheeses. Crave Brothers Farmstead Cheese is sustainably produced in the family’s own farmstead cheese-making facility that practices water conservation, recycling, and uses 100 percent green power. The anaerobic biodigester produces enough electricity to power the Crave Brothers Farm, the farmstead cheese-making plant, and over 300 homes in their community.

Visit the website at for recipes from the Crave Brothers Farmstead Cheese Recipe Contest winners, product information about the award-winning line of Crave Brothers Farmstead Cheese, and videos highlighting the Crave Brothers green story.

The Crave family farms 2,500 acres of productive land in south-central Wisconsin, growing soybeans, corn and alfalfa to use as nutritious feed for their Holstein cows. From the biodigester to water recovery and recycling, sustainability is top-of-mind on the farm. The Crave Brothers Farm LLC and Crave Brothers Farmstead Cheese LLC use 100% green power and are carbon-negative businesses. Their anaerobic biodigester produces more electricity than they need, enough to power the dairy farm, the farmstead cheese-making plant, and over 300 homes in their community.

Every pound of cheese made by George Crave, a licensed cheese maker, is made with milk from the family’s herd. Crave Brothers Farmstead Cheese produces Fresh Mozzarella, Mascarpone, Part-skim Mozzarella, Oaxaca, Farmer’s Rope String Cheese, and Fresh Cheddar Cheese Curds in white, yellow and jalapeño varieties.

Italian-Style Shakshouka with Crave Brothers Farmstead Marinated Mozzarella
and Marinated Crostini

Shakshouka is North African dish made with eggs poached in a flavorful sauce of tomatoes, peppers, onions, and spiced with cumin. This version crosses over to the other side of the Mediterranean Sea to give the recipe an Italian twist. Along with perfectly poached eggs, marinated ciliegine gently melt into the warm tomato sauce. It is served with mouthwatering toasted crostini to sop up every last bite.

Italian Shakshouka
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup chopped yellow onion
2 tablespoons tomato paste
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 clove garlic, minced
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
2/3 cup chopped jarred roasted red peppers
1 can (28 ounces) diced tomatoes
6 eggs
1 container (8 ounces) Crave Brothers Fresh Mozzarella Cheese Marinated Ciliegine
1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf Italian parsley
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Marinated Crostini
Crusty Italian bread

1/4 cup reserved marinade from Crave Brothers Fresh Mozzarella Cheese Marinated Ciliegine
Pre-heat oven to 400˚ F. In a large ovenproof skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add onion, cook until softened, about 5 to 8 minutes. Add tomato paste and cook until it darkens slightly, about 2 minutes. Stir in cumin, garlic, smoked paprika, and red pepper flakes; cook for about 30 seconds. Add roasted red peppers and tomatoes with juice. Simmer about 2 minutes. If necessary, season with sea salt, to taste.
Using the back of a spoon, make 6 indentations in the tomato sauce and crack 1 egg into each well. Then, place marinated ciliegine cheese throughout the tomato sauce. (Reserve remaining marinade for crostini.) Transfer the pan into the oven; bake until egg whites are set but the yolks are still soft, about 8 minutes. The mozzarella will just begin to melt. Sprinkle with fresh parsley and a few turns of freshly ground black pepper. Serve immediately with prepared crostini.

For the Marinated Crostini
Slice Italian bread into 1/2-inch slices. Lightly brush both sides with the reserved marinade from a container of marinated ciliegine cheese. Bake until lightly browned on both sides, about 8-10 minutes. Crostini can be prepared in advance and set aside until ready to serve with Italian Shakshouka.
Yield: 6 servings

Scrumptious Summer Blueberry Mozzarella Wild Rice Salad

Blueberry Vinaigrette
1/2 cup blueberries
1/4 cup white vinegar
1/4 cup honey
6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

6 cups mixed greens, washed and dried
2 cups cooked cold wild rice (no barley)
1 cup fresh blueberries, rinsed and picked over
4 ounces Crave Brothers fresh mozzarella cubed, “small” pieces
½ cup blueberry vinaigrette

Place all vinaigrette ingredients in a small blender an pulse until combine. Remove and chill until ready to use.

Place the mixed greens on a beautiful platter. Spread the cooked brown rice on top, leaving a ½” border of greens

Top with the blueberries and sprinkle the mozzarella on top.

Drizzle half of the vinaigrette over the top of the salad. Cover with plastic and chill for 15- 20 minutes.

Spoon onto salad plates and serve with extra vinaigrette on the side.

Serves 6