Skinny Head and Tiny Brain

I’ve mentioned several times that my wife and I have taken a trip each year for our anniversary. Most are a quick weekend away and we alternate the planning for the trip. One such anniversary, years ago, it was my turn to plan and I decided that a weekend in Ohio’s Amish country would be a good get-away.

Always looking to make the weekend unique in some way, I found a bed and breakfast that was located on a working ostrich ranch. Yes. Ostrich. Those big birds with the long neck and tiny head. This B&B had been open for about year and as part of the stay the guests were treated to a tour of the facilities. We checked in and found the B&B a beautiful place. All of the wood used in the cabin-like rooms was from the property and being at the highest point in the county, you had great views of the area.

The following afternoon we took our tour. The first stop was one of the pens that held an adult male. This pen was about 50′ long and about 10′ wide. At one end was a large nest with the male sitting on top. While the female lays the eggs, the male is a primary nest-sitter. Our guide told us that a female will lay an egg each day if there isn’t one already in the nest. Every day they bring the female into the pen and take her out after an egg is laid.

The guide stopped the ride and walked over to the end of the pen farthest away from the nest. He then grabbed the chain-link fence in both hands and rattled the fence. The male ostrich looked up in alarm and after seeing the guide, rose and sprinted to our end of the enclosure. It ran right up to the fence and squawked at us. The guide, by then, had backed up several feet. He later told us that one guide had stood too close and the male had delivered a powerful kick to the fence which pushed back into the guide and broke a rib.

While the commotion was occurring down at our end of the fence, another worker entered the enclosure at the far end, picked up the egg from the nest and left. Eventually we retreated enough so the ostrich went back to the nest and looked around in wonderment about where the egg had disappeared to. They perform this dance daily with the male. He never learns, but you have to remember in that skinny little head is a very tiny brain.

The next stop was into a large corral with all the juveniles. We entered and it was like the parting of the Red Sea. Two foot high little ostriches  ran away and kept running as we walked around. The last stop was the hatchery where they take the stolen eggs, keep them warm and help the babies break through the shell.

The breakfast the next day was a large omelette (made from ostrich egg) and some strips of ostrich “bacon”. It was delicious.

Photo Jul 18, 5 46 14 PM

These crepes don’t require an egg as large of an ostrich thankfully.

Photo Jul 18, 5 05 35 PM

I made the crepes earlier. The rest of the ingredients are pretty straight-forward.

Photo Jul 16, 1 33 15 PM

Shedding the chicken with my Meat Claws.

Photo Jul 18, 5 13 54 PM

Getting the filling ready.

Photo Jul 18, 5 15 36 PM

Add the filling to one end of the crepe and roll.

Photo Jul 18, 5 15 55 PM

Placing them in the baking dish.

Photo Jul 18, 5 27 52 PM

Starting the pan for the asparagus.

Photo Jul 18, 5 34 13 PM

Sauteing the asparagus.

Photo Jul 18, 5 46 09 PM


Chicken and Asparagus Crepes

Prep Time: 0 hours 20 minutes | Cook Time: 0 hours 15 minutes | Makes: 4 servings | Difficulty: Easy


  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, plus more for the dish
  • 2 1/2 cups shredded rotisserie chicken
  • 1 1/2 cups ricotta cheese
  • 3/4 cup grated parmesan cheese, plus more for serving
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh herbs (such as parsley, dill, chives or mint)
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 8 store-bought crepes (about 9 inches each)
  • 1 shallot, sliced
  • 1/2 pound asparagus, trimmed and cut into pieces
  • 3/4 cup low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest


Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Butter a large baking dish. Combine the chicken, ricotta, 1/2 cup parmesan, 3 tablespoons herbs, 3/4 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper in a medium bowl. Spoon about 1/4 cup filling across the lower half of each crepe; roll up to enclose the filling. Place the crepes, seam-side down, in the baking dish. Cover with foil and bake until the filling is hot, about 15 minutes.

Meanwhile, melt 3 tablespoons butter in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add the shallot and cook until it softens, about 1 minute. Add the asparagus and cook until just tender, about 3 minutes. Add the chicken broth, lemon zest and the remaining 1 tablespoon herbs and simmer until the sauce is slightly thickened, about 2 minutes. Stir in the remaining 1/4 cup parmesan and season with salt and pepper.

Divide the crepes among plates, top with the asparagus and sauce, and sprinkle with parmesan.

Per serving: Calories 405; Fat 24 g (Saturated 14 g); Cholesterol 115 mg; Sodium 984 mg; Carbohydrate 19 g; Fiber 1 g; Protein 26 g


Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Categories: Breakfast, Cheese3, Chicken2, Eggs, Low Carb, Lunch3, Recipes, Vegetable4

Author:The Ranting Chef

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One Comment on “Skinny Head and Tiny Brain”

  1. April 26, 2014 at 5:43 pm #

    Your posts always come into my inbox each morning and this morning’s post was a delight. You and your wife went to the ostrich farm but we all got to enjoy the amazing visit. You made it so real. I cannot imagine farming ostriches. The post title is great. Thank you for such an interesting read.


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