Monday Meal Review: Costa Rica

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We had killer-good food and one epic fail this week. Considering we've been living in "renovation-land," things could be a lot worse. For example, I almost lost my measuring cups, spoons, and chef's knife. Turns out they were just hiding in the living room, under the contents of three other drawers. And, while we're talking about renovations... Did you know there are about 100 million kinds of white paint in the world? I assure you that, if you ever decide to paint your cabinets white, … [Read more...]

Recipe: Heart of Palm Salad

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Serves 4 This beautiful arranged salad is perfect for a family-style dinner party. You could also make individual portions. However, if all this seems like too much muss and fuss, feel free to chop and toss, without taking time to do the careful arrangement. Everything will still taste wonderful. Promise. Ingredients: 1 head romaine, sliced 1 tomato, sliced into wedges 1 orange pepper, sliced thinly 1 jar heart of palm, each one sliced in half lenthwise 1/2-1 lime, juiced olive … [Read more...]

Recipe: Black Beans and Rice (Gallo Pinto)

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Gallo Pinto is enjoyed by Costa Ricans year-round, for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. The beans and rice are mildly seasoned, however the Worcestershire sauce gives the dish an unusual kick. Ingredients: 2 1/2 cups leftover, cooked white rice 2 cans black beans, drained and rinsed 1 onion, chopped 4 cloves of garlic, crushed oil 1/2 tsp paprika 1/8 cup Worcestershire sauce 1 cup broth or water salt and pepper Method: Heat oil over medium heat. Add onion. After just a moment, … [Read more...]

Recipe: Costa Rican Potatoes (Gallitos de Papa)

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Serves 2-4 Gallitos de Papa uses simple seasonings for big flavor. The smoky paprika and garlic go a long way to wake the humble potato up. An especially great breakfast/brunch dish, this Costa Rican favorite is perfect for serving with eggs.  Traditionally served in corn tortillas - feel free to moisten with fresh salsa or sour cream. Ingredients: 4 small potatoes, cubed 1/8 cup olive oil 4 cloves garlic, crushed 1 tsp paprika 1 tsp sugar 1 tsp salt water (optional) chopped … [Read more...]

Video Saturday: Happy Halloween!

First, a very special video of Miss Ava. httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Omx0ED2Yzxk Second, a video about creepy, crawly wildlife in Costa Rica. httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HwLe4f5MaUM&feature=related Third, some dancing. httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w1qhEEUxhY0&feature=related … [Read more...]

Fun Fact Friday: Costa Rica

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Feel like trick or treating in Costa Rica? You wouldn't be alone.  Although a relatively new holiday to the country, Halloween is growing in popularity with the locals - and why not? Kids get to dress up (and parents brim over with pride). Then everyone eats candy until their tummies hurt. Awesome fun for everyone! (NOTE: Watch out for the rain. October is the rainiest month of the year. Not great for polyester and fluffy bunny costumes). If Halloween isn't your thing, you can just eat the … [Read more...]

Recipe: Caramel Milk Candies (Dulce de Leche Candy)

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Makes about 36 candies Behold my epic fail - homemade "Caramel Milk Candies." I planned to make these typical South American candies for Halloween. Little did I know, I was in for a real mystery even Sherlock Holmes couldn't solve. You see, metal cans are not transparent. I was literally cooking blind. As I learned, this is a tragic prospect when it comes to candy making. Despite my diligent efforts (nerdy, even) to make and remake these candies, I failed.  I'd keep going, except I'm … [Read more...]

Menu: Costa Rica

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Costa Rican food is warm, comforting and upbeat (yes, food can be upbeat - just ask a juicy, lime-green lime). Thank goodness, because I need some happy comfort! You see, I'm nervous - since we won't be moving into a shiny new-to-us home, we're polishing up our current residence (and cooking around the mess). First step? Painting my dark wood cabinets (in my dungeon kitchen) a pretty white color. I'm hoping "pretty" and "white" will erase the "dark" and "dungeon" effect. I will also have you … [Read more...]