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Celebrations Costa Rica: How to Make Costa Rican-Inspired Dishes with Michelle Fox (Part 2 of 3)

Michelle Fox, Culinary Nutritionist, is a mom, wife, friend, yogi, and community builder. It is her mission to create healthier communities. She teaches busy professionals how to get more nutrition in their bodies and how to have more fun in their home kitchens!

In Part 1 of this CELEBRATIONS series, we explored the beauty of Costa Rica and the “Pura Vida” lifestyle. Here, we dig into more Costa Rican food fare.

In this edition of CultursCELEBRATIONS! we provide healthful versions of traditional Costa Rican fare with Culinary Nutritionist Michelle Fox.

Check out this Facebook Live video featuring Michelle Fox and the Culturs team!

TOSTONES WITH TOMATO GARLIC DIP AND BLACK BEAN DIP

Celebrations -- Costa Rican Tostones
Costa Rican Tostones

Ingredients for Tostones:

  1. 2 plantain (green, unripe)
  2. 1⁄2 cup avocado or peanut oil (due to
    high smoke point)
  3. 1 tablespoon salt, (or more, to taste)

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Peel plantains, discard ends
  2. Cut plantain flesh into 1 inch (2.5 cm) thick slices.
  3. Heat oil over medium heat in a small saucepan
  4. Carefully place cut slices into the oil with a spoon.
  5. Fry about 5 minutes or until light golden.
  6. Remove from oil with slotted spoon.
  7. Using a large spoon, bottom of a glass jar, or tostonera, flatten fried plantain pieces. If you like them thin and crispy like chips, flatten to about 1⁄4 inch (0.5 cm). For a creamier middle with crispy edges, don’t make as flat.
  8. Carefully place flattened fried plantain into heated oil for a second fry until golden on both sides (about 5 minutes).
  9. Sprinkle with sea salt to taste and serve immediately. Best when fresh.

MANGO SALSA

Mango salsa

4 servings

Ingredients:

  • 3 ripe mangos, diced 
  • 1 medium red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 avocado, diced
  • ½ cup chopped red onion
  • ¼ cup fresh cilantro leaves, chopped
  • 1 jalapeño, seeded and minced
  • 1/2 lime, juiced 
  • Sea salt to taste

Directions:

  1. Gently combine all ingredients in a mixing bowl.
  2. Let the salsa rest for 10 minutes or longer so that the flavors have a chance to meld.  You are welcome to refrigerate for up to 3 days, but this dish is amazing at room temperature as well.
  3. Serve on top of your protein or as a side dish.  Pura vida!

BAKED PLANTAIN

celebrations
Baked plantain

4 servings

Ingredients:

  • 2 green (savory) OR yellow (sweet) plantains
  • 2 tbsp melted coconut oil
  • 1 tsp garlic powder (optional)
  • 1 tsp white pepper (optional)
  • Sea salt to taste

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
  2. Carefully peel off the skins, making sure not to smush the plantains. 
  3. Slice the plantain into 1/4 to 1/3 inch coins on the diagonal and place them in a mixing bowl.
  4. Next, coat the plantain with oil and sprinkle with sea salt and optional seasonings, and mix with your hands.  Ensure that every piece of plantain is coated with the oil and seasonings.
  5. Place each coin on a baking sheet ensuring that there is ample space between each piece.  Your plantain will not be as crispy if you overcrowd the pan.
  6. Bake the plantains for 10 minutes and then flip them over with tongs.  Bake another 6 – 10 minutes watching them closely to avoid burning.  Bake until they are golden brown. 
  7. Scoop into a bowl and serve warm.  Yum!

PAN FRIED DORADO aka MAHI MAHI

Pan Fried Dorado aka Mahi Mahi
Pan Fried Dorado aka Mahi Mahi

4 servings

Ingredients:

  • 1 large or two small (skin-off) Dorado aka Mahi Mahi filets, about 8 ounces
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • ½ tsp ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • ⅛ cup arrowroot flour
  • 4 tbsp coconut oil + more if necessary
  • 1/2 lemon

Directions:

  1. Heat a heavy pan over medium high heat.
  2. Season fish on both sides with sea salt, garlic powder and pepper. Lightly dredge fish in arrowroot flour and shake off excess. When the pan is hot, add coconut oil.
  3. Place fish in pan and jiggle pan for the first 10 seconds to keep the fish from sticking. Cook until golden crust forms on meat and add more coconut oil if necessary. 
  4. Carefully turn fish away from you and again jiggle pan for the first few seconds. Cook until the second side turns golden brown as well – about 4 minutes. 
  5. Using your spatula, move from pan to a paper towel-lined plate and squeeze lemon juice on top.  Let cool for at least 2 minutes.

Serve and enjoy!

Michelle Fox, Culinary Nutritionist, is a mom, wife, friend, yogi, and community builder. It is her mission to create healthier communities.  She teaches busy professionals how to get more nutrition in their bodies and how to have more fun in their home kitchens! 

Michelle’s certifications come from New York University, Inner Connection Institute, Arvigo Institute (Belize) and the Academy of Culinary Nutrition (Toronto). She builds healthier communities through teaching culinary nutrition workshops and through community service.

Celebrations Costa Rica Michelle Fox
Photo courtesy Michelle Fox
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