Akaka Falls

See the World for Free

The idea here is to TRAVEL THE WORLD regardless of time or budget. It dawned on me one day that even if I had unlimited time and money (which I definitley do not), I still couldn't see everything in the world that I'd like to see--I'm simply not going to live long enough to do it.

But I had a bit of brain wave and soon after the travel envelope was born. This is an actual physical envelope. I typed the name of every country in the world, plus every state in the US on little slips of paper which I then put into the envelope. In the beginning we (myself, my husband, Dave and daugher Catherine) would draw out a slip at random at the beginning of the month and that's where we would go---at least in our minds. We grab some books about the country from the library and put them in our bathroom to look at. We also check out some videos about the country if any. We check it out on googleearth, listen to the music, try the food, maybe even attempt to learn a dance or celebrate a festival.

After the first two years we discovered that even virtual traveling can be tiring, so we travel now whenever I happen to be in the mood.

It's great fun. I especially love it when people I meet have been to the place I'm "visiting" in real life, or get excited and have some virtual adventures of their own. I hope that anyone who comes across this blog will feel welcome to come with us on the trip!

You have a standing reservation to see it all!

Mar 21, 2016

Muy Delicioso!

Yesterday was deemed Costa Rica food day. It was a Sunday and Dave made the supreme sacrifice to not have pancakes in favor of Gallo Pinto con Huevos.

I'm told by my friend, Ashley, and multiple guidebooks that Gallo Pinto is eaten everywhere all the time. It's a dish with rice and black beans with onions and peppers. Very good! The eggs I made weren't anything special, but I made a big platter of fruit to go with it. Costa Rica has lots of fabulous fruit. Utah has mummified passion fruit, but I tried.

Next up, dinner. The trick here--and indeed any of these cooking attempts, is to get everything served up hot at the same time. Being unfamiliar with the recipes makes this tricky.  But last night was a success.  First up--black bean dip.  Despite the fact that it has sour cream AND bacon on top, my verdict is that it's good, but probably not anything I'd go out of my way to make again.

The weird thing we tried was this empanada dish that didn't use flour. It's made of mashed plantains--these are spread into a circle and topped with mashed beans and cheese, then folded in half and deep fried.  Trying to mash the boiled plantains in my blender sent the blender to an early grave--it was actually smoking. The actual dish wasn't too bad. Dave's not crazy about plantains, and I wouldn't serve it to a guest, but it wasn't too bad.

The big hit of the evening was the main dish, "Chifritos."  YUMM!! I will be making this again! I felt a little guilty. The thing that's really eaten all the time is chicken and rice. But no matter how you spice it up, it's still chicken and rice and I'm just never going to crave that. At least one guidebook claimed that Chifritos were eaten all the time too, so I went with it.  What this is first, a layer of rice made with chicken bouillion, onion, garlic, peppers, egg and coriander. On top is a layer of white beans with more onions and coriander, on top of that is pork sausage, on top of that is the "chimichurri" tomatoes, onions, cilantro with fresh lime squeezed on top. All this is served with chips and it's filling and delicious.

Lastly, for dessert we had coconut flan. I forgot to take a picture, but it was pretty good. If you like flan and coconut you'll like it. I was supposed to bake it in a carmalized baking dish. No idea what that means, but I had some caramel sauce in the fridge and we had that.

If I ever get to go to Costa Rica, I won't starve.