Meet the Maker: Janet Smith 10

Borgman’s Dairy Farm

For Janet Smith, owning and tending to her herd of 200 goats at Borgman’s Farmstead Dairy means maintaining the legacy of her grandmother, Blanche Borgman, who founded the dairy in 1935.

Although the Johnson County Missouri dairy is decades old, Janet and her husband, Randy Smith, took the business in a decidedly new direction when they took over operations in 2006. Today the Smiths pride themselves in being the only Grade-A goat dairy in the Kansas City region and bringing unique culinary goat’s milk offerings to the market, far beyond classic chevre.

Janet Smith combines goat’s milk, a splash of vanilla, a pinch of salt and a tablespoon of baking soda in a stainless steel kettle and simmers it at 220 degrees for 14 hours. The result is cajeta, a rich buttery caramel sauce with a touch of tanginess that’s perfect for stirring into coffee, topping desserts or even as a glaze for meat.

Visitors to the Borgman Farms stall at City Market, the Overland Park farmer’s market and select area Hen House markets will find Janet’s culinary creativity on display. Along with cajeta, there is cheesecake in a jar, a creamy herb spread for topping steaks, rich chocolate truffles and salad dressing.

The Smiths recently received state and federal grants to help fund their development of an urban creamery in the historic West Bottoms. Although it will be several years before Borgman Farms has a completed creamery in the heart of Kansas City, Smith looks forward to the opportunities it will allow, both for her business to expand, and the opportunity it will create for local farmers with smaller goat herds. The Smiths plan to locally purchase goat’s milk to create a steady fair trade market and expand their production into yogurt and additional snack and dessert products.