Costa Rica Chica Cookbook

chica blog

Hello everyone! I just wanted to take a moment to formally introduce you to my newest book that has just been published:  COSTA RICA CHICA COOKBOOK (<— click here if you want to skip the rest of this post and BUY NOW – it’s ok, I don’t blame you).

I’m so excited and proud of this book!

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Chocolate Dipped Peanut Butter Balls

peanut butter

Well, who doesn’t like Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, right?  These are so easy to make, and I swear they taste exactly like Reese’s, even though they are a slightly different shape.  But with some nuts sprinkled on top, how cute are they?

INGREDIENTS: 1 Cup Creamy Peanut Butter 4 Tablespoon Butter (cut into small chunks) 2 Cups Powder Sugar 8 oz Semisweet or Bittersweet (good quality) Chocolate for melting (chopped) 1 Tablespoon Shortening 

In a microwave safe bowl, melt butter and peanut butter together in the microwave (start with 1 minute on high…  you just want the little chunks of butter to melt, but do not want the peanut butter to get too liquidy). Stir together until smooth.

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Easy Oreo “Truffles”

oreo II

Easy Oreo “Truffles”

Ingredients:
1 regular package original Oreo cookies
1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, softened 2 cups Semi Sweet Chocolate Chips (or other good quality chocolate, broken into pieces) ½ TB Crisco (shortening) 2-3 TB white frosting (from a can, works best!)  
Directions:

Break Oreos into a food processor, and process until they turn into fine crumbs.

Mix Oreo crumbs and softened cream cheese together until well blended.  Place bowl in freezer for 20-30 minutes (this helps with next step).

Roll Oreo mixture into walnut size balls, and place on waxed paper on cookie sheet.  Freeze for an hour.

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Nine Non New Year’s Resolutions

Every year, this time of year – I get tired of hearing everyone’s “new year resolutions” and having people ask me what mine are.  Why?  Because if you ask almost ANYONE what their resolutions were last year at this time – they wouldn’t be able to answer you!   Resolutions seem to be a high priority at the end of December and throughout January, but then….  are quickly forgotten (OK – not everyone…  I know I have a few friends out there that are the exception to this rule).   I feel this is something people love to talk about, and yes – have good intentions (which are always good, don’t get me wrong).  But how many people really carry through with them – for the whole year?

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13 Moments from 2013

2013 was a year bookended by a beginning and an end for Greg and I.  Beginning of our new life in Costa Rica, and the end to Greg’s Dad’s wonderful life.  The year began with both of us leaving our jobs in May.  We then moved to Costa Rica in June, and attended Dad’s funeral shortly thereafter – he died 3 days after we had arrived in Costa Rica.

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Bartering… the coolest form of currency.

Bartering – seems like something from the “olden days”, as my Grandmother would say.  Before I moved here, I had read a snippet about it somewhere…  and I thought, man – that would be so cool to barter one of my “talents” for something I wanted in return.

Well, I’m happy to report bartering is alive and well, here in Costa Rica!   I love bartering – especially because we are on a pretty tight budget now.  It is so cool, y’all!  You just exchange something that you can provide that another person wants, for something that you want that the other person can provide.  Sounds easy, right? Here’s an example:

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Gracie(a)’s Granola

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I made this super easy granola for my niece Gracie who just started college in East Texas and happened to have a birthday while I was visiting in Dallas.  Me & Mom Seymour (my sweet mom-n-law) made her a little care package of some goodies.  Good thing I made a lot of granola, as I kept snacking on it before it actually got shipped out (sorry, Gracie).

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Jen’s Spanish Rice

This is something I make a lot of here in Costa Rica – it’s so wonderful to eat with chicken and vegetables, or beans (another staple here), and keeps in the fridge for days.   Actually, I’ve kept in the fridge for as long as a week and it’s still great!   I’m ashamed to say that I never made this before I moved to Costa Rica.  When I lived in Dallas – I bought the pre-packaged (add water & boil) kind, because you know, like I never had TIME.  Here, I have time and have amazing fresh ingredients to use, and guess what – I PREFER my Spanish Rice from scratch now.  🙂

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