Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Playa La Flor

This weekend some friends and I went to one of the most magnificent beaches I've ever visited. It is a bay on the Pacific very close to the Costa Rican border (perhaps some 15kms) and it is a wildlife refuge managed by the Nicaraguan ministry of environment and the military. We arrived as the only visitors. Pure solitude.

It was an amazing contrast from the El Remanso, the beach we had visited earlier in the day. El Remanso was full of beginning surfers and pickup trucks. La Flor was alive with birds (pelicans, frigates and more), whereas I don't recall a single bird at the more developed El Remanso.

We stayed to watch the sun recede below the horizon.

The team managing the refuge is running a project to hatch over 1,000 turtles per day. Below is one! Of these 1,000 babies, probably only 10 will become mature enough to reproduce (a mere 1%). Poaching and natural predators account for this staggering statistic.
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Bolognese a la Matagalpa

. Red pepper, diced
. Eggplant, peeled and cubed
. Onion, diced. Garlic, diced
. 1lb ground Matagalpa beef
. 2 cans peeled, canned roma tomatoes
. Fresh mushrooms (imported...)
. Olive oil and butter
. Paprika, dried oregano, basil, parsely, bay leaves, dried chile seeds
. Ground pepper and salt

Sautee red pepper (in bowl) and cubed eggplant (salted, patted down with paper towel, left to sit for 15 mins) in olive oil.
Set aside.

Sautee mushrooms with garlic and butter. Set aside.

Sautee ground beef in butter with onions, garlic, spices and herbs.

Transfer ingredients 1 by 1 to pot...

Add cans of peeled roma tomotoes and simmer with the bay leaves.
Gently mush tomotoes with wooden spoon until you have a chunky, meaty sauce.
Add dried chile seeds to taste, depending on your desire for heat.
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Sunday, July 4, 2010

At the local watering hole

My little apartment is just two doors away from the best bar in town, Cafe Artesanos.

Fun Friday night with the guys.
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