Don’t Chicken Out

Seems lots of us have been in “fowl” moods off and on lately, so I’d like to return to my pet rooster, Pecker, for the final time.  You’ve heard about him before (here – and here).  Sorry for the blurry photo of me and him and our turkeys, but it was taken about 55 years before iPhones and their amazing cameras were invented.

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I must have been about 8 when we had him as “our” pet.  My brother – to this day – claims that Pecker belonged to him.  Right.

I have no idea how long Pecker was a part of our family, but I do remember the tears – and more tears – I shed when my dad solemnly announced to me one morning that Pecker had died that night – defending his flock.

The website “ (“insights for a happy, healthy flock”) indicates “Most chicken losses occur at night when raccoons, skunks, opossums, owls, mink, and weasels are most likely to prowl.”  I remember my dad thinking it was a raccoon.

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Lovely rooster we photographed who was meandering – a bit-  around Sayulita, Mexico.  Hope there aren’t raccoons there (or skunks, possums, owls, mink, or weasels).  Note the two wandering cuties behind him.

Why didn’t Pecker’s flock defend themselves – or at least help him out?  My respect for hens has been diminished.  They “chickened out” at the worst possible time.

Being annoyed with hens led me to googling species which have females in control.  It turns out there aren’t many…African Lions, Killer Whales, Spotted Hyenas, African Elephants, Orcas, Lemurs, and – Bonobos, according to New Scientist.   I’d explain why I have a new appreciation for Bonobos – which are considered one of human’s closest relatives – but we consider this a family-rated blog 🙂  Suffice it to say that “She had him by the balls” is literal as well as figurative for Bonobos.  If you want to explore this further, here’s a great article from Scientific American.

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One of our closest relatives – the Bonobo; I feel like this is the look I give Andy sometimes 🙂

Even if dogs are not included in that list, I came across this analysis of canine females and males from the “Honey Hill Aussies” website (yes, I’m still in search of a puppy).  It may be surprising to know that “bitches” usually rule the roost –  but read it,  inserting “human” instead of dog – and I bet you’ll find it as unintentionally and hysterically funny as I do!

In the dog pack makeup, females usually rule the roost, determine pecking order and compete to maintain and/or alter that order.  The females are, as a result, more independent, stubborn and territorial than their male counterparts. Most fights will usually break out between two females.

Males on the other hand are usually more affectionate, exuberant, attentive and more desiring of attention.  They are very attached to their people. They also tend to be more steadfast, reliable and less moody. They are more outgoing, more accepting of other pets, playful for more years and take quicker to children. 

Most boys are easily motivated by food and praise and are so eager to please that training is easy. However, males can be more easily distracted during training because of their playful nature. No matter what age, he is more likely to act silly and more puppy-like, always wanting to play games.

Boys are fun loving until the day they die.

Females tend to be more reserved or dignified as they age.   

Doesn’t that say it all? 🙂

Speaking of Aussies and females dogs and bravery, Andy has an even deeper look into that in today’s Andy’s Corner.

To conclude:  Hens may be wimps – and they clearly don’t “rule the roost” – and aren’t as aggressive as female dogs or as in control as female Bonobos – but everything and everyone deserves SOME credit.   And hens deliver one of our favs…eggs.

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Our eggs from neighbors Sandy and Stacey

Those adventurous chickens we saw in Sayulita, Mexico, make me think of our new “breakfast especial.”  Try it – as well as some of our other egg-enhanced recipes:

Zucchini and Mint Frittata
Tuna Nicoise Salad Bowl
Breakfast Lunch and Dinner Fried Rice
Scrambled Egg Muffin Sandwich (we’ve actually got 3 simple egg recipes there)
Japanese Cheesecake
Moonshine Cake

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Tostadas de Frijoles con Huevos

Tostadas de Frijoles con Huevos (tostadas with beans and eggs)

We really like homemade tostada shells, and baking them is so much easier than frying them…and almost as satisfactory. As for refried beans, we recommend Goya Traditional Refried Pinto Beans – either vegan or not – or Bush’s Best Cocina Latina refried black beans.

2 corn tortillas – about 6″ in diameter (or 2 packaged tostada shells – we like the Guerrero brand)
olive oil or vegetable oil
Diamond kosher salt
2 eggs
Salt and pepper to taste
1/4 c refried beans (figure about 2 T of beans per tostada)
salsa of your choice
1/4 c crumbled cotija cheese or feta cheese
cilantro, for garnish (optional)

Preheat oven to 425˚F.

If you are making your own tostada shells, brush or spray each side of the tortillas with olive oil and season with a bit of salt. Bake for about 10 minutes, turning the tortillas over after 5 minutes.  They should be golden brown and crispy when you take them out of the oven.  If not, leave them in the oven a few minutes longer.  Watch them closely; they will easily get too brown!  And note: tortillas vary in thickness and width, so you have to adjust the baking time accordingly.

Meanwhile, heat a small skillet over medium heat and add about 1 T olive oil. Add beans and heat until warm (or stick the beans in the microwave for about 1 minute).

Heat another small skillet (8″ works) – which has a lid – over medium high heat.  Add 1 T oil and when the oil is hot, crack each egg (carefully) into the pan.  Salt and pepper to taste.  When the whites have begun to crisp up on the very edges – about 30 seconds, add about 1 T water to the pan, cover, turn the heat down to low, and cook until the layer of white over the yolks is barely opaque.  We estimate about 1 1/2 minutes – and more if you like the yolk to set up.  When checking the eggs for doneness, lift the lid just a crack to prevent loss of steam should they need further cooking.

To assemble, spread the tostada shell with a thin layer of beans; add salsa to taste, a fried egg, a sprinkle of cotija cheese, if you’re using it, and cilantro.

Serve with a fork – but you’ll find it easier to eat if you just use your hands.  Have a napkin nearby.

Recipe brought to you by and Andy and Ann.


  1. Anonymous says:

    Though I’m not sure this applies to all males, it certain applies to the author of Andy’s corner. “Males on the other hand are usually more affectionate, exuberant, attentive and more desiring of attention. They are very attached to their people. They also tend to be more steadfast, reliable and less moody. They are more outgoing, more accepting of other pets, playful for more years and take quicker to children.”


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