Archive for the ‘Food and Drink’ Category

Shopping for Souvenirs in Costa Rica

Monday, February 15th, 2016

After eCosta Rican Coffee Beansxperiencing a Costa Rican vacation and the retaining memories of paradise, exotic locations, and all the adventures you had while in this beautiful country, you may want to invest in some souvenirs to bring home to friends and family or even to remind yourself of the sense of “Pura Vida” you found here. Chances are that throughout each venture you will find fantastic, one-of-a-kind Costa Rican keepsakes that you will want to bring home. Rather than waiting throughout your entire Costa Rican vacation to shop at an airport venue, we fully suggest that you shop along the way at each location you visit. You are more than likely to find unique and beautiful Costa Rica souvenirs that will give you a taste of what you experienced while traveling abroad. Below, you’ll find a short list of some timeless favorites!

Infamously Fresh Ground Coffee or Coffee Beans

Your friends and family will thank you when they find out that you brought back fresh ground coffee or coffee beans in several different flavors from some of the world’s most prestigious coffee plantations. Café Britt along with Doka’s Tres Generaciones are both award-winning and well-known coffee plantations that offer tourists a plethora of souvenirs. They not only carry the actual coffee itself in variation (light roast, medium, dark, and espresso) but also other souvenirs such as chocolate covered coffee beans, music, t-shirts, and books and information regarding the history of coffee in Costa Rica. These are premium blends of coffee from the plantations themselves so don’t hesitate to pick up more than one or two bags. Your luggage will smell great and each morning after you return home will feel like you brought back a light piece of paradise.

Indigenous Tribal Art & FolkloreChorotega Pottery

With a little bit of exploring it is not at all unusual to stumble upon towns that make their very own intricate masks, colorful and original ceramic pottery, or even delicate and stimulating textiles. Costa Rica is full of rapidly declining indigenous tribes such as the Boruca or Chorotega that still try to preserve their culture by continuing to create and showcase their many talents. Amongst the Maleku tribe of Costa Rica you can find jewelry and other handmade wooden keepsakes. Some tribes specialize in woven goods, such as purses or backpacks. No matter what you choose, you can’t go wrong when you pick up one of these rare and beautiful artifacts. These artisan crafts make incredible gifts and furnishing for houses.

Versatile Hammocks

If you’ve lived in Costa Rica long enough or your Costa Rican vacation was an eventful occasion, then you know that a sturdy hammock is not only practical but also necessary. You can find a beautiful hammock in almost any town in Costa Rica; some of them are manufactured by companies while others are made from local town artists or indigenous tribes. These hammocks can literally be easily packed up and taken anywhere. You can hang them from your home, your porch or even just between two trees. They are perfect for reading, relaxing, people-watching, sleeping, rocking in the shade or laying in the sun. They are portable, light and a beautiful souvenir that anyone would be happy to own.

Handmade Wooden Crafts

If you’re in search of a traditional and timeless Costa Rican souvenir, you will find that craftsmanship is very much alive in this small country. They wooden crafts you find in each town are usually made by local businesses or individuals so you are not only supporting this country when you invest in a souvenir but also the smaller local town business. You can find some of the most beautiful and exceptionally crafted bowls, jewelry, vases, coasters, salad spoons and many more made from exotic and rare Central American timber. These wooded souvenirs also make long-lasting and beautiful home furnishings for yourself, friends, and family members. You’ll find them anywhere; whether in a tourist town or while exploring un-discovered territory.

Souvenir Tips!

Keep in mind that haggling over prices in any town of Costa Rica is a completely reasonable thing to do. A lot of vendors will lower the asking price of a souvenir when simply asked for a discount on something that you like. Paying in local currency is best since the exchange rate of other currencies versus Costa Rican currency can change on a day-to-day basis.

Manuel Antonio Welcomes Back the Ceviche Festival This November

Sunday, October 11th, 2015

Ceviche-Costa-RicaThere is quite a celebration to schedule on your calendars that all the locals and the tourists of Manuel Antonio and Quepos will be attending. November 13th through the 15th is the weekend of our second annual Ceviche Festival. Locals and tourists alike will all come together and create a fiesta like no other as we revel in the many different flavors, varieties and different forms of ceviche that will be made available for tasting. We are hosting this year’s Ceviche Festival at the Marina Pez Vela in Quepos. All are encouraged to come by for the incredible food as well as a host of other family-oriented activities that will be going on that weekend.

Anticipation and Excitement Surrounding Our Annual Ceviche Festival

The locals and tourists of Manuel Antonio and Quepos are looking forward to hosting this event for the second time. We enjoy extending the tradition of bringing cultural individuality to others through some of our typical foods, such as ceviche, to help celebrate Costa Rican cuisine and the history of this area. This Central Pacific area is home to some of Costa Rica’s most famous fish ports and is overflowing with fresh seafood. This festival was stemmed from the Costa Rican Institute of Pacific Ports and the Travel Expo Show. We wish to continue on the success from last year’s event!

Highlights and Abundant Seafood at Our Ceviche Festivalceviche-ingredients

Ceviche can seem like quite a revelation to those that are not native or local to our Manuel Antonio or Quepos area. It can be made from several different types of fresh fish, including fish that is caught and sold locally. Some of the main sources most commonly used are Snook, Mahi Mahi, Seabass, and other forms of white, meaty fish. Alternative forms of ceviche can be made from shrimp, octopus or even squid for the more adventurous culinary types. It is typically a light and refreshing dish that you can find around town on various restaurant menus or even at local events like La Feria or ceviche trucks parked on the side of the road. Whatever seafood you choose to cook with is marinated in citric lime juice for several hours and actually cooks the meat. Chefs from all over can get creative as once the seafood has been cooked, it is usually served with red bell pepper, cilantro, onions, and a wide range of spices. For a little cultural variety, some chefs like to add ginger, hot chili peppers, tabasco or other forms of home-made hot sauce to their ceviche. There is truly something for everyone.

Inventive New Ceviche Ingredients and Creationsceviche-Manuel-Antonio

For those that like to be super creative and extend their culinary genius, our event will also feature ceviche dishes that have ingredients included such as, mangos, peaches, bananas, and other vegetarian-friendly ingredients. The variety of ceviche dishes only adds to the fun as this ceviche event is also a tournament to be mediated by a selected panel of judges that will have the pleasure of distinguishing a winner and awarding them one by one in a variety of categories. Don’t be shy to tell us what you think! Bring your adventurous spirits, appetites, family and friends down to the Marina Pez Vela and enjoy an afternoon of culinary adventure and family fun. Help us make the Ceviche Festival an annual tradition!

Traditional Ceviche Recipe

When making your own ceviche at home, test out this traditional recipe and don’t be shy when making your own substitutions or changes according to taste.

Ingredients:
1 pound of white fish (examples: Seabass (Corvina), Mahi Mahi, Snook
1 cup of freshly squeezed lime or lemon juice
1 small white onion, diced
½ bell pepper, diced
1 clove garlic, diced
1 handful of cilantro, chopped finely
Salt and pepper to taste
(optional – 1/4 cup ginger ale )

Instructions:
1. Place all ingredients in a large bowl and let fish marinate/cook for at least 2 hours. Tip – the longer the fish “cooks” in citric acid, the more intense the flavor will be.
2. After approximately marinating/cooking for 2 hours, serve cold on a bed of shredded lettuce with tortilla chips or crackers on the side. Additional garnishes include cucumber or avocado slices.

 



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