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Try them all!

Try all the different fruits available

Being a tropical country Costa Rica is blessed with a huge variety of fruit. Some like bananas,  and mangoes come in a huge number of varieties, shapes and sizes.

Many other fruits can not be found elsewhere then in the tropics, even exporting some is difficult. The reasons can vary. It is sometimes difficult to keep the fruit fresh and many of them are very little known in some western countries.

Fruits found in Costa Rica include papaya, mango, piña (pineapple), sandía (watermelon), melón (cantaloupe), moras (blackberries), limones (lemons), guayaba (guava), granadilla (passion fruit), and aguacates (avocados). Many of these are served plain or as a refresco, a blended drink with ice.

Marañon is a curious fruit whose seed is the cashew. Zapotes are a brown fruit resembling an oversized avocado in appearance and texture. Guanábanas (soursop) are textured, green football-sized fruits with white fibrous flesh.

Pipas (green coconuts) are extremely popular among Ticos. By chopping the top with a machete and tapping the hollow core with a straw, you have a refreshing drink.

The palmito (palm heart) is the inner core of a small palm tree and makes a great delicacy as a cocktail. Carambola (starfruit) is a yellow-green tender fruit that when cut across makes slices that look like five-pointed stars. The taste is lightly sweet and juicy.

The pejibaye, a relative of the coconut, is a bizarre fruit. It's flesh is thick and fibrous, and resembles the taste of chestnut or pumpkin. They are usually boiled in salt water, peeled, halved, pitted, then eaten. The manzana de agua is a dark red, pear-shaped fruit that is full of juice and quite refreshing.

Pejibaye Entree

The pejibayes are the fruit of the palm Bactris gasipaes, these fruits are a delicious source of fiber. They are cooked in boiling water with a pinch of sugar, beef bone and a dash of salt, and should be stewed around 40 minutes to 1 hour. In general, the pejibaye is peeled and eaten either alone or some prefer to add a bit of salt or mayonnaise.

Ingredients for 2 persons

  • 12 stewed pejibayes
  • 1 sweet pepper
  • 1 onion
  • 1 cilantro
  • 1 celery
  • 3 sharp lemons
  • mayonnaise
  • a small amount of mustard and a pinch of salt

Chop the onion, sweet pepper, cilantro and lastly the celery. Peel and cut the pejibaye. Remove the seed (large and located in the center) and add all the spices as well as salt, mustard and sugar. Cool it down and serve it with salt, crackers or tortillas.


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