Hi Jackie. Two more questions that I am sure you know the answer to. 1. when I get to the bottom of my cider vinegar, the “mother” is there waiting for something, but I don’t know what. Is there some use for it? or do I just throw it away? 2. the receipe for pumkin pie calls for evapo milk. I am running over with goats milk and hate to go buy inferiour canned stuff. Can I just use whole milk , maybe with part cream instead of evapo ? Thanks a bunch.

Gail Erman
Palisade, CO

There are many various health claims about how beneficial nibbling on bits of the mother of vinegar is for you; I really don’t buy into that.  Not that I think it’s bad for you, but a lot of claims are over-rated.  To sell a product, usually.  Unless you’re going to make your own vinegar, I’d just add the mother to the compost pile.  If you want to try making your own cider vinegar, you can use a bit of the mother to “start” your new vinegar because it contains the correct yeasts and bacteria to acidify your “hard cider”, making it turn into vinegar.

Yes, you can use goat milk in place of evaporated milk.  I just use a little less or add one more egg to ensure that the filling sets up nice and firm; you don’t want soup!  I hardly ever use evaporated milk, but most folks don’t have their own dairy animals.  Unfortunately.  There’s something about eating a Thanksgiving meal where where nearly everything on the feast table has been raised on your own homestead.  You can’t buy that.  For any price!


  1. Making pumpkin pie w/ fresh goats milk, use 1/4 cup flour or cornstarch.
    No need to buy the adulterated stuff in a can
    as per recipe in Potpourri of Cooking, 1980, page 337, titled Mom’s Best Pumpkin Pie

    Becky # 2 in a 5 generataion line :)

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