Local Treasure: Licon Dairy
POSTED: Tuesday, December 25, 2012 - 6:00pm
UPDATED: Tuesday, December 25, 2012 - 6:10pm
SAN ELIZARIO, TX — The "udder" truth is that no dairy in El Paso milks its own cows anymore.
The county doesn't allow it, so the Licon family pays tribute to the last holstein to contribute here on the property.
These days the fresh milk is trucked in from Fort Hancock 40 miles away. Angel Licon says it's chilled at 40 degrees, then it feeds straight up through pipes into the next room where a family business continues a tasty tradition.
"This process is called pasteurization, it's actually called the first process in making cheese, when the milk is separated from the curd," he said. "At about 250 to300 degrees and this is how it starts. This is the first important step before we start cooking the cheese."
If the temperature isn't just right or if it isn't stirred correctly, it will never make it to the store counter.
"This is where everything has to be perfect," Licon said. "The temperature, the whole process or it will be ruined."
The Licon Dairy is a great American success story.
Angel's great-grandparents started the business in their own kitchen in the 1950s, and has the business grown since then.
There is also a surprisingly active petting zoo.