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Indo-Chinese Chili Chicken

Chef's Corner logoSometimes nicknamed “Chindu” cuisine, it’s the result of Chinese immigrants in India who adapted their recipes to local flavors and produced some of the happiest accidents of Asian-fusion.

This sauce combines sweet soy, garlic, ginger, and spicy peppers. Ask your butcher for “muslos deshuesados,” or boneless chicken thighs. They will remain juicy and delicious throughout the cooking and reheating of this dish. 

Ingredients for about 6 servings

  • 500 grams of boneless chicken thighs
  • oil for frying
Finished dish

Finished dish

For the batter

  • 3 tablespoons of cornstarch
  • 2 tablespoons of flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon of powdered cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon of ground black pepper
  • 3 to 4 garlic cloves finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon of grated ginger
  • 1 pinch of salt
  • 1 tablespoon of rice wine vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons of water

For the sauce

  • 3 tablespoons of vegetable oil
  • 3 green onions (scallions) thinly sliced
  • 1 jalapeno pepper or more to taste
  • 8 to 10 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon of shredded ginger
  • 1/2 small red or green bell pepper, thinly sliced
  • 1 tablespoon of sriracha sauce
  • 1 tablespoon of ketchup
  • 1/2 cup of good quality soy sauce
  • 4 tablespoons of brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup of cold water mixed with 2 teaspoons of cornstarch
Chicken in batter before frying

Chicken in batter before frying

Directions

  1. Cut the boneless thighs in 1 inch pieces and prepare batter ingredients.
  2. Coat the chicken as seen in picture.
  3. Fry in batches in a shallow pan with the vegetable oil. Drain on paper towels.
  4. Prepare sauce. Heat oil in a pan and fry the green onion, garlic, bell pepper, ginger, and jalapeno until fragrant.
  5. Add the sriracha ketchup, soy sauce, and sugar.
  6. Add the water/cornstarch mixture and heat until the sauce thickens.
  7. Mix in the fried chicken pieces, garnish with cilantro leaves or sliced green onion tops, serve with rice or noodles.

Let’s talk about the Lineated Woodpecker

Lineated WoodpeckerBy Paul Gerace

The Lineated Woodpecker is a large woodpecker with a very distinctive red crest.

It is found all throughout our area and it’s habitat ranges from Mexico down to South America. You can often hear it pecking away at old trees as it looks for ants and other insects. They also eat fruit and seeds from heliconias.

When I see them the crest reminds me of punk rockers with tall red hair. They can also be recognized by the white stripes running down their faces and sides of their necks. A streaked chin also helps to identify it.

Just another one of the many colorful birds that are found here in Quepolandia. See more bird photos HERE.


A Passel of Jacks, Jills, and Joeys

Opossum header

I have seen lots of Jacks and Jills and even a few Jills with bunches of Joeys, but I have never seen a passel. In fact I just recently learned what one was. I know you have heard of a pride of lions, a herd of elk, and a troop of monkeys, but how about a passel of opossums. Since these mammals are solitary by nature and don’t hang out in groups, I doubt if the word sees much use. Jacks, of course, are the males, Jills the females, and Joeys the babies. I don’t know if a Jill with a bunch of Joeys on her back is considered to be a passel or not. If so then I guess I have seen a passel.

The common opossum (Didelphis marsupialis) is a nocturnal, marsupial mammal found throughout this part of Costa Rica. They are not the least bit charismatic, and certainly won’t win any beauty contests. Being stinky when up close doesn’t win them any fans either. The Bribri Indians even consider them to be messengers of death. Not being picky about their food often gets them into trouble with urban dwelling humans for invading garbage cans. Rural families despise them for raiding chicken coops, killing chickens, and eating eggs. They will eat almost anything from fruit and grass to birds, insects, small reptiles and even carrion. With a diet as diverse as that they need lots of teeth of many different kinds. Opossums have more teeth than any other mammal. There are 50 in total including incisors, premolars, molars, and canines.

In spite of their bad reputation opossums are really pretty interesting. Let’s take, for example, the fact that they are immune to snake bite. Scientists have been searching for the source of this immunity for some time and have recently discovered a chain of amino acids in their blood serum that appears to neutralize snake venom. The really good news is that they have been able to pass this form of immunity on to mice in a laboratory, and there is hope that someday soon it will be available for snake bite treatment in humans.

Hacienda Baru Read More…


TSI HOPES ACUPUNCTURE CAN HELP AN INJURED SLOTH NAMED DOLLY

The Sloth InstituteAn electrocuted 2-fingered sloth rescued by The Sloth Institute undergoes experimental acupuncture treatment, thanks to Rafiki Chiropractic Care. For humans and some domestic animals, acupuncture has commonly been used to treat a variety of health issues, from physical disabilities to neurological issues. In the special case of Dolly, an adult female 2-fingered sloth, an electrocution from a power line left her severely injured. Her left eye was damaged and her right arm had lost some of its mobility. The Sloth Institute came to the rescue and gave her immediate critical care.

Dolly receiving acupunctureFortunately, her eye healed and regained full functionality. But Dolly showed signs that she had lost some motor skills in her right arm. Acupuncture has successfully treated humans, dogs and cats. Could this treatment help sloths? Dr. Constant Boshoff, BSc D.C., who practices at Rafiki Chiropractic Care in Manuel Antonio, is willing to find out. He has generously donated several treatment sessions of acupuncture with electrical stimulation, which, according to Dr. Boshoff, “reinforces the acupuncture stimulation. We will see how she responds after six weeks.” Dr. Boshoff loves animals. “The little I can do is only a pleasure,” he added.

Follow Dolly’s story! Visit TheSlothInstitute.org or facebook.com/TheSlothInstitute and check out “Sloth Diaries.”

ABOUT THE SLOTH INSTITUTE

The Sloth Institute (TSI)’s mission is to enhance the welfare and conservation of sloths through research and education. TSI is located in Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica. For more information please visit TheSlothInstitute.org or email us: info@theslothinstitute.org. If you see a sloth who needs help: CALL or WHATSAPP +506 87SLOTHS 7 5 6 8 4 7.


Escape Room

Escape RoomWhen visiting paradise, the last thing that may be on your mind is to escape!

But, really…trust me, this should be on your list of the “must do’s” while visiting Manual Antonio.

Pirate roomYou may have noticed over the past few months a rather large old prison type bus sitting roadside on top of the hill. This is Manuel Antonio’s latest attraction, El Escape Bus!
What is an Escape Room? An escape room, also known as an “escape game”, is an interactive adventure themed game in which players solve a series of puzzles and riddles using clues, hints, and strategic thinking to complete the objective at hand. Players are given a set time limit to solve the secret plot which is hidden within the rooms.

The two fully air-conditioned escape room themes offered by El Escape Bus are the Crimson Storm and the Cartel Murders. Depending on your flare for fantasy, you and your friends can join the thieves of the high seas while being imprisoned in the hull of a ship, only to find yourselves looking for treasure and trying to escape! If pirates and lost treasure don’t get you excited, then perhaps joining an elite group of global crime investigators who have been summoned to examine evidence and name a suspect in a Cartel related crime here in Manuel Antonio will peak your interest!

Cartel roomBoth themes are one hour long and can accommodate 2-6 people, depending on the game. The new permanent home for the bus it is located across the street from the Barba Roja and operates from 3-8 pm or VIP hours upon request at no additional fee.

For more information, simply visit www.costaricaescapebus.com or call/msg 8524-7658.


My Favorite Waves – Playitas in Manuel Antonio 

Surf CR logoIf you are a surfer and are visiting the area, be sure to check out Playitas in Manuel Antonio. I will tell you how to get there and when to surf it.
 
As you drive from Quepos to Manuel Antonio, there will be a plateau about half way over the hills. When you get to the plateau look on the right for the Barba Roja Restaurant and just past that signs pointing to Arenas del Mar Resort. Take a right at the sign and then go all the way down the hill. Four wheel drive is recommended since some parts are a little rocky and the road back up is steep. You will end up right on the beach and can either park right there or drive a short distance back north. Do NOT do this if you think your car will get stuck in the sand or you think the tide is coming in. Check the link above or crsurf.com/costa-rica-surf-report/costa-rica-tide-charts-2019 for the tides.

PlayitasOnce you get there, be careful to not leave anything of value in your car because if you are out surfing you can’t watch it. Then as you walk out towards the break, you will see a big rock 2 meters high that makes for the southern end of Playitas and a rocky point, which is the northern end. There are peaks on both ends, plus another two peaks in between. My favorite time to surf it is one hour before high tide and in the morning before 9 a.m. while the winds are still offshore. Be careful of the smaller rock boulders that jut out at lower tides in the middle of the break. 
 
The wave can get crowded with locals who are good surfers, so the earlier you go the better. The beginners end up surfing farther to the south as there are 2 kilometers of open beach between Playitas and Manuel Antonio National Park. The best angles for swell are from the South to Southwest, and the perfect size is chest high to a foot overhead. More size than that and 90% of the waves are closeouts. 
 
Be sure to check back next issue to hear about my other favorite wave in the area—The Quepos Rivermouth.


Kids Saving the Rainforest – March 2019

Dona

Dona

KSTR LogoHello Quepolandia readers! Its Karma Casey, spokes-kid for KSTR. I just got back to Costa Rica, and I’m ready to help you learn more about saving the rainforest!

This month I will be talking to you about the Kids Saving the Rainforest wildlife rescue center, and some of the animals being helped there!

First things first, every animal that comes into KSTR goes straight to the veterinary clinic. There our clinic team comes to the rescue! They determine what is wrong with the animal, and quickly do what is needed to help save them. Take for example Senor Dona, a two-toed sloth I talked about in one of my previous articles.

Dona had a very bad day, getting electrocuted and then falling onto the road and being hit by a car. But luckily Kids Saving the Rainforest came to the rescue! Poor Dona used to be paralyzed from the waist down. As you may have read in my other article, the KSTR clinic/rescue team have tried everything they can to help Dona, even teaming up with an acupuncturist to help this very determined sloth regain the use of his back legs.

Read More…


Tennis Club Quepos Has a New Partner

Abigail Forbes

Abigail Forbes

Tennis Club of Quepos has made a new partnership with Florida based Edge International. Edge International is a management company that provides trainers, physical therapists and nutritionists to promote young talented tennis players.

TCQ is proud to announce three new coaches Jason Zafiros, Rick Massi, and Robbie Poole. These trainers have worked with some of the best women in tennis, such as Jennifer Capriati, Maria Sharapova, and the Williams sisters.

Here at TCQ they have been working with three exceptional young women Carina Scott, Gabriella Price, and Abigail Forbes.

Congratulations to Abigail Forbes who won the Culpa Cafe in San Jose two months ago and the tournament in Cuenca Ecuador last month…. Great Job.

Our goal here at Tennis Club of Quepos is to help guide train and develop young tennis players here in the area with premier coaches and facilities.

For more information: 8603-0473, tennisclubquepos@gmail.com, tc-quepos.com.

 


That’s Fishin’- March 2019

Thats Fishin' header

By Benn Gilmour

What a GREAT start to the year it has been here in Quepolandia with some truly world class fishing taking place during January & February. Plenty of Sailfish & Blue Marlin were caught with some good numbers of Striped Marlin and several huge Black Marlin in the 500lb plus range. Quepos boats have been seeing Dorado on most Offshore trips with some good sized Bull Dorado still being caught which are always a welcome addition to any charter.

Peligic Rockstar competitorsPELAGIC ROCKSTAR!

What a blast we all had at the Pelagic Rockstar Tournament held in January! The Marina Pez Vela was one big party for the weekend as a staggering 50 boats joined the action releasing a staggering 413 Sailfish & 11 Marlin between us! There were lots of Tuna and Dorado weighed also for good measure. Huge congrats to BIG OH for winning the big boat division with 26 Sailfish and Amy’s Dream for winning the small boat division with 9 Sailfish, great work guys! TAG TEAM won the Dorado division & The SEA HAWK PAINTS team won the Tuna division fishing on the stunning 50’ Maverick OPEN FLY. Congrats to all & I am already looking forward to next year’s event!

TUNA TIME!

We have enjoyed some great Tuna fishing recently with lots of fish in the 30-80lb class with some larger fish & several 200lb plus fish reported. Most of the larger fish are caught on live baits such as Bonitos, Blue Runners, Goggle eyes & Sardines. Surface poppers, artificial jigs and small tuna lures can also work great and account for many of the 30-80lb Tuna. Our Tuna form huge schools typically 20-50 miles Offshore and travel alongside Spinner Dolphin megapods which consist of several hundred dolphins, which provide some simply incredible scenes. Reason enough to take a fishing charter in itself and March should continue to provide some excellent opportunities for Tuna.

Read More…


Envision Festival 2019

Envision Festival header

By Andres Vargas

The shorelines of Costa Rica are some of the most majestic in the world. Playa Hermosa and Uvita’s Marino Ballena have been home to my family, my friends and a variety of turtles, birds, fish and other wildlife that live here. Over the years I’ve watched the numbers of those who visit the beach grow, and with it came increased concerns about rubbish and swimmer safety. I remembered what it was like to have safe, clean beaches. I wanted that for my children too, so I asked a friend, Josh Wendel, who is a Costa Rican resident, owns a few businesses in the community and happens to run an event near Uvita called Envision Festival, to support a plan that educates both tourists and Ticos to all do our part to keep the divine beaches of Costa Rica trash-free and safe.

Beach clean-up annoincementWe agreed something should be done and within a few weeks a plan was formed.

We wanted to pick up all the trash left at local beaches. Since New Year’s, I’ve organized three Beach Clean Ups attracting Costa Ricans from all over, including Tamarindo, San Jose, Heredia and Alajuela – just for a few. Today, we have three more beach cleanups planned including one the weekend after Envision Festival. Each has been more successful than the one that came before it, with a bigger turnout of participants and more trash cleared. In our most recent Beach Clean Up, almost 100 people gathered with trash bags in-hand to pick up a record 335 kilos of trash from Playa Colonia, Playa Uvita, Playa Ballena and Dominical. Over the course of a few weeks I watched our volunteers become heroes, as a record 1 ton and 30 kilograms of waste collected over 55 kilometers of shoreline.

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Fiddlin’ Around – March 2019

Time header
Time fliesTime flies when you’re having fun…Time has passed me by…Time has taken its toll…Time stood still…I don’t have Time for that… She’s gotten better with Time…that’s a Timeless melody…to everything there is a Time… We all talk about Time as if we had a clue what it’s all about. We try to manipulate time or control it, or measure it, or define it—and we certainly write lyrics and songs about it. My personal favorite saying about Time doesn’t really mean a damn thing—it just looks good scrawled on a wall. ‘Time flies like an arrow, but fruit flies like bananas…’

Songwriters have penned some truly cheesy and simplistic things about time, but they occasionally hit on some profound thoughts that we can all relate to. The Stones wrote about being “Out of Time” (it was never played live—and is only on the UK version of the recording “Aftermath”). They also wrote “Time Waits for No One” and optimistically that “Time is On My Side”. Their fascination with the subject also resulted in “The Last Time”. The Doors asked the world to “Love Me Two Times”, Cyndi Lauper wrote about “Time After Time” and even vapid little Brittney Spears wants “Baby, One More Time”. That great band Chicago asked the big question—“Does Anybody Really Know What Time It Is?” Cher had a hit with the song “If I Could Turn Back Time”, which she has apparently spent a good chunk of her life trying to do, at least physically! Clint Black wrote “Killin’ Time” and Ray Charles can make us weep with his song “Crying Time”.

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2nd National Clean-up Day

National Clean-up Day logoWe were very happy to have had 45 locations in Costa Rica and beyond with our neighbours Nicaragua & Panama, symbolizing that pollution has no borders, simultaneously cleaning on Jan 12th 2019. It was a successful event with more than 1250 volunteers united to collect approximately 8,600 kilos (1 ton) of debris from entering our precious oceans!

Find and join us on FaceBook and Instagram for information about our next activities, @OperationRichCoast.


Envision Hangover Cure

A Healthier You headerElements of Envision festThe lush and magical jungle of Uvita is hosting Envision Festival 2019 for its 9th year. We all know Envision as a four-day music festival, but did you know that it’s also a celebration dedicated to Movement, Art, Bio-construction, Health, Community, Permaculture, and Spirituality?

Envision aims to awaken each human’s higher self and full potential. It differs from other music festivals because it takes the experience deeper, beyond the music. The festival offers a healing sanctuary, yoga and other movement workshops, plant medicine workshops, retreats, tours, and excursions.

If you’re here at Envision this year, you’re sure to have experienced change, adventure, healing, and new friendships through yoga, self-love, meditation, dancing, chanting, and learning.

And when it’s all over, how do we re-enter the world outside the festival? How does your body and mind recover from such a spiritually and physically exhaustive weekend? Luckily, we’ve got you covered.

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I AM A Man (Woman)

Careers and lifestyle choices are heavy hitters in this game called life. I recently read that only 13% of Americans love their job. This saddened me profoundly. I never realized how small that percentage is. What are people afraid of? It is time to grow up and start living with those innate cues that every human has. The more you are polluted the less you will hear. Life does not have handcuffs—those are by your doing. I’m confused by the desperation or fantasy worlds that some people live in. Every damn thing that has worth takes work, time, effort, and sacrifice. My friends and I live by this creed, we have no choice.  


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Technology For The Win: The Rise of Smart Kitchens

Design Wise logoBy Karoline Gore

Kitchens are often renowned as the heart of the Costa Rican home, but these days, that heart might need some TLC. Traditional foods like casado and the morning batch of pinto de gallo are still being served in Costa Rica, but something might be missing from this tradition: a sit-down style family meal. Eating together as a family has been found to have a plethora of benefits. Unfortunately, life today is very fast-paced, and your family time might be paying the price. After a long, hard day, it’s quite a challenge to make a home cooked meal and rally the troops to have a family dinner. Of course, you can’t cut corners in life, but what you can do is let technology help you out!

Royal Palm Interiors

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