Eating in Costa Rica

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May 25th, 2006, 11:55 AM
  #1
ptm
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Eating in Costa Rica

I'm traveling to Costa Rica and I am a vegetarian. What can I expect for restaurants, etc? Thanks, any tips would be greatly appreciated. PTM
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May 25th, 2006, 04:56 PM
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It's very easy to eat vegetarian in Costa Rica. Rice & beans are everywhere, and they don't cook w/ lard. All of the food is fresh and delicious -- especially the fruit. The typical breakfast is gallo pinto (rice mixed w/ beans), fruit, toast, and an egg if you eat them. Lunches are casados -- rice and beans not mixed, with a salad, plantain or other veggies, and often a piece of meat or fish but you can ask for a veggie casado. I've had pasta at a lot of places. In San Jose there is a veggie chain called Vishnu. Batidos are delicious drinks -- any fresh fruit blended with either water or milk. Buen Provecho!

Sandy
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May 25th, 2006, 06:01 PM
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As far as the rice and beans, alot of the restaurants put bacon in them. You may want to ask!
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May 26th, 2006, 05:08 AM
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I have been to Costa Rica a bazillion times -- all over the place -- and I've never had bacon in my rice and beans. This can't be a very widespread practice.

Sandy
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May 26th, 2006, 08:00 AM
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I would imagine that many things are cooked with lard., which is animal fat. The beans, tortillas, anything sauteed. In Mexico, lard would be unavoidable unless you restricted your intake to fresh fruit and uncooked vegetables. I suspect CR is the same way. You may have to loosen the reins a little.
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May 26th, 2006, 10:52 AM
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Not true in CR. If you're not a vegetarian, you probably don't think much about these things, so assuming things is not helpful. In fact Cost Rica was named as one of the most vegetarian-friendly countries to visit by the Washington Post precisely because they do not cook their food in lard like some other Latin countries.

Sandy
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May 26th, 2006, 12:36 PM
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Yes, I made an assumption - one that is reasonable and logical. And, I still believe, factual. At the very least, A strict vegetarian may have to accept food cooked with lard and meat based broths used very regularly.

From WorldTeach.org:
A note about what is "vegetarian" in Costa Rica. To a Costa Rican, a vegetarian or someone who does not eat meat is a person who does not eat red meat. They will feed you chicken or fish. If you are a vegetarian, you need to list all of the varieties of meats that you do not eat. Please remember that you are in a different culture and therefore exposed to many different experiences and changes. This may involve becoming more flexible with eating habits. Although we all have a preferred and ideal diet, it can be very hard to follow in a rural community where people are limited in resources or choices. We ask that you be as flexible as possible and do not offend the host culture when making food choices. For North Americans rejecting meat in a meal is simply a choice and in Costa Rica it can be viewed as an insult.

From TravelerTales.com
In Costa Rica, I lived on lard and coffee. There was lard in the bread, in the rice and in the beans. There was lard in the cookies, in the imitation Doritos I ate at the school where I taught; it was coating the potatoes and being used to fry bananas in the cafeteria.

Just two quick examples.

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Jun 14th, 2018, 04:37 AM
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Bread in Costa Rica

What about breads in Costa Rica. How can I be assured that there are no animal fats in bread?
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Jun 14th, 2018, 08:18 AM
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Wow, this thread is 12 years old!
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