Cooking and eating through a new culture


A year ago I was staring into the abyss.

Now I am staring out over the Central Valley. Funny where life can take you. While skating the edge of oblivion in a drunken haze, this strange wonderful man asked me a simple question: Would you like to go get some pie? Really? That’s all it takes? Pie? Yes, pie. Of course it would be food. What other media allows you to tap into all your senses? Sates you to tears? On that fateful night, I babbled away and probably spilled more than Cosmo would deem acceptable. And I talked about cooking. Specifically my philosophy that you should never trust a woman who doesn’t know how to cook.

A short time later, he asked me another question: Would you like to come to Costa Rica with me?

Sure. Can I bring my kitchen?

So here I am. Exploring my way through a new culture and cuisine, learning so many new things, yet still attached to my old school ways. It is the adventure of a lifetime.


8 thoughts on “About

  1. Jim Johansen on said:


    I ran across your site quite by accident, searching for the specifics of how Natilla is made. I am also a food nut…have been a chef, a food importer, and I have a Ph.D. in synthetic chemistry…just another type of cooking.

    I also live in Costa Rica most of the time…near San Ramon. I thoroughly enjoyed your writing and share most of your food opinions. perhaps one day I can go in with you on that clean raised meat you want. I have compromised my diet a great deal since I have been here. In the states, i only buy organic produce and clean-raised meats. here, I have had to be more flexible..but i am learning.

    I am actually looking at starting a small food business here…perhaps importing some specialty products…perhaps just making awesome cookies…My Tico friends have fallen in love with my gringo-style cookies and cakes.

    Anyway, If you would like to share experiences and resources with a fellow gringo foodie…write me.



    • Thank you for reading and your wonderful comments!
      So how long have you been here? I am still a neophyte, the odd (wo)man out, here for reasons that not many understand. An amazing adventure, none the less. Food is certainly a challenge here. We go to the Zapote farmers market on Sunday and have found a fantastic German couple that makes their own chemical free sausage and one butcher that makes MSG free smoked bacon. Next week I’ll get their names. I only know them by location in the market.
      Rafa and I are still exploring many food options but what we miss the most are olives and European cheeses. I’ve heard there is an Italian market in Escazu, but we haven’t made it there yet.
      So yes, lets keep in touch.

  2. Hi! Welcome to your challenging but rewarding move to Costa Rica. I saw your comment on delapuravida. It will 4 years in Costa Rica for me and my husband and wouldn’t trade a minute of it. Check out my site and I will do the same with yours. I love your take on the food, isn’t amazing all the crazy looking fruit here? I just tried some guanabana and I am hooked. Good luck and keep the posts coming.

    • Thank you! I really like reading your blog, but the main reason is because you and your husband are living and working in CR and well…it’s positive! No gringo/tico bashing, no hedonistic drug infused beach binges, no “Costa Rica is great within my gated community”. Seriously, from all that I read about gringo/tico couples, I though I was in a relationship with some Dr Jekyll/Mr. Hyde, that at any minute my sweet, funny Rafa would turn into some machista bully. And you MUST try guanaban ice cream! It’s divine!

      Keep up the good work!

      I had my reverse-culture shock a few weeks ago too. Very similar!

  3. Hola! I came across your blog today and have thoroughly enjoyed reading it – to the point of complete disruption of my work day. So thanks! I’m a Canadian who fell in love with a Tico in Feb of this year and after doing a trial run of 3 months co-habitating, have come back to live permanently with him. Back in my “native land” I’d always felt really restless – …like something huge was missing. Here (the Osa) I feel completely happy and that I’m finally home! I can so relate to your accounting of adjusting to life here and your posts really make me laugh out loud- which I completely appreciate, as I too have read a lot of gringo/tico bashing and haven’t been able to relate at all to it. Please keep posting and if your adventures ever take you as far as Drake Bay, let me know so we get together and share a bottle of vino!

    • Thank you for your kind words! It has been a wonderful adventure and judging from what Rafa has been telling me (I’ll write about this more soon, I promise) it’s about to get crazier. Through it all, it has been our sense of humor that has really allowed Rafa and I to last and prosper. As much as we have explored, we have yet to make it down to Osa. I hear it is stunning. There is seriously a lot to see in this tiny country. And if you ever find yourself in the Central Valley, please do not hesitate to drop a line.

      Thank you for reading!


  4. Buenas noches! I found your blog googling “costa rican food” and is one of the very few that actually accurately talks about Costa Rican food. My friends are constantly surprised by how well I eat down here (can’t get enough of the fruit). I’m in the same situation as you – met a Tico, fell in love and moved down there with him and I don’t regret any minute of it! Culture differences makes it more fun and always something to learn everyday! Check out our site and I’ll definitely keep following yours! 🙂 buena suerte y bien hecho!

    • Hey Thanks! We are still here plugging along. The only problem is that being in the jungle now has seriously compromised our internet connection…hence no posts in a looong time. We just got a new booster and hopefully we can get that sucker working well enough that I can load my blog site in less than 15 minutes. Other than that, it’s mango season and I feel I am turning a lovely shade of NJ orange from eating so many. Never a dull moment here! Good luck!

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