Today was a day of Roosters, Chicken cages and a Salad Recipe that I like and use often. When you have two roosters in a small, confined area, there is going to be trouble. And there was trouble this morning when the larger one started picking on the smaller rooster. That Meant that I needed to get to work and make another temporary cage so that I could separate them until the new chicken coop is completed. It took me a couple of hours but everything is now o.k. in chickenville.
Our nephews started work on the chicken coop we need to take care of the chickens we are
getting. My wife takes in injured chickens and thus the number of chickens will grow as time progresses. I will have a nice supply of
farm backyard free range eggs because we will let the chickens out of the coop each day during the hours we are out and about. Tomorrow they will start early and we well have the screen attached. One thing is a little different, when we build their roosting area, it will be semi-open due to the heat. We can’t keep them in a chicken “House” over night but we still want them to have a place to lay their eggs. It will be a design challenge for sure…
Sooner than I planned, it became time to make lunch, which is about 2 p.m. here in Mexico. Today we are moving away from the normal Mexican Lunch and serving a fresh Classic Caprese Salad with Balsamic Glaze
It’s hard to beat the classic flavor combination of fresh tomatoes, mozzarella, and basil. However, this version adds another dimension by adding a rich and syrupy balsamic glaze instead of straight vinegar to top it off. This, combined with a really good quality extra virgin olive oil, is all you need to make this classic shine!
- 4 large ripe tomatoes
- 12 oz. fresh mozzarella, large ball
- 1 large bunch fresh basil, washed and dried
- 3 T. really good extra virgin olive oil.
- 1 cup of balsamic vinegar
- sea salt and fresh-cracked black pepper, to taste
- Thoroughly wash and pat tomatoes and fresh basil dry. Slice tomatoes into evenly sized pieces, approximately ¼” thick, and set aside. Discard the bottom and top pieces. Slice fresh mozzarella into ¼” thick pieces, as well.
- On each plate, start with a tomato slice, followed by mozzarella and a large, fresh basil leaf. Repeat this pattern until you’ve added 1 tomato and approximately 3 oz. of mozzarella to each plate, finishing each arrangement with a tomato slice. Drizzle with high-quality extra virgin olive oil.
- To make the balsamic glaze, heat 1 cup of good balsamic vinegar over medium-high heat until it begins to boil. Reduce heat and simmer until the liquid is reduced to about ⅓ of its original volume, stirring continually. When the liquid becomes thick and syrupy, it is ready to use.
- Let glaze cool before drizzling over the fresh tomato, mozzarella and basil. Season with salt and pepper to taste and garnish with additional sprigs of fresh basil, if desired.
I like to use buffalo mozzarella when I can find it. It is usually available in a cheese shop. The tomatoes should always be vine ripe. Do not go cheap when you purchase balsamic vinegar. There is a world of difference in balsamic vinegar’s. Like wine, the flavor is in the aging process. It is aged a minimum of 12 years. It is only made in Riggio Emilia and Modena, Italy. Made from white locally grown late harvest grapes it is made from the grape must. Balsamic vinegar flavor has notes of fig, cherry, molasses, chocolate or prune with a slightly smokiness that comes from the casks it is stored in. Traditional balsamic vinegar is always labeled Aceto Balismico Tradizional and has a D.O.P. stamp. It will also have a unique identifying number. Store it in a dark, cool place to preserve its flavors.
Everyone enjoyed the lunch and of course we all took a small nap after we ate. After all it is a Mexican tradition and I’m not one to break with tradition..After that we did finish making the chicken cages to hold the roosters until the Chicken coop is finishes.