Food in Costa Rica deserves its own blog post.
We eat 3 meals a day in the commodore (a semi-outdoor dining hall). There is ALWAYS rice and beans at each meal, prepared differently some times, but mostly it is just plain rice and beans. There is a rotation of red and black beans, whole and mashed beans. The rice is white or brown, occasionally made into fried rice with cauliflower, onions, and carrots. Only 2 meals so far have been without beans but there is always rice. I love rice and beans so much that I eat them about 3 times a week at home, but 3 times a day is a bit much and I have to say I am pretty tired of seeing them.
One thing I remembered very fondly from my visit to Costa Rica 6 years ago was all of the fresh fruit. It is just a bit sweeter and more flavorful here, most likely because it is grown locally and cut up within a day. Breakfast is the best time for fruit and there is always fresh mango, papaya, watermelon, pineapple, and bananas. It is so refreshing when the rest of breakfast is heavy foods like eggs, various meats and sausages, pancakes, french toast, and rice and beans.
Coffee is goooood in Costa Rica! Of course, it grows here on plantations. It is dark and rich and smooth, and lacks the acidity of coffees we buy in the United States. So far I have bought 6 bags of it to take back to Colorado. I’m sure I will pick up more one I start traveling on the west side of the country.
Another favorite Costa Rica made food is the Lizano Salsa. It is made in San Jose and is a vegetable puree with a tang. One bottle is enough for me to take home but I have already found a place online I can buy it.
I don’t do large meals well but I do well snacking throughout the day. The food at meals is typically a meat (fish, pork, chicken), cooked squashes, broccoli, and cauliflower, and various vegetable salads. It is all prepared in fairly healthy manor and typically lacking in spices and sweetness. Even the daily fresh fruit juices are not sweet because they are diluted with water. So, the first time I had the chance to go to the Supermercado, I stocked up on a Costa Rican cookie, Chiky, which my aunt and uncle introduced me to 6 years ago. They are also not as sweet as any cookie in the United States but it gives me just enough when I crave it.
We are definitely well fed here at La Selva but I think all of us are anxious for a change in food in coming days!