I was fortunate to get my hands on a personal recipe to share, thanks to the concierge at my hotel who hails from a region she feels is known for the best Gallo Pinto!
- 2 cups cooked black beans
- 1/c cup bean stock or ½ cup chicken stock if bean is not available
- 3 cups cooked white rice
- ½ onion, chopped
- 1 bell pepper, chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, chopped
- 2 tablespoons fresh coriander (cilantro), chopped*
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- Heavy cream (sour cream), if desired as topping
- Fry onion and bell pepper in vegetable oil, about 3 minutes.
- Add the garlic and sauté a bit more.
- Pour in the beans and the stock, bring to a simmer.
- Avoid the mixture drying up.
- Add in the rice and stir thoroughly, gently.
- Don’t mash the beans!
- Season to taste with salt and pepper.
- Right before serving stir in the coriander (fresh cilantro) and top with heavy cream (sour cream) if desired
*In the United States 'coriander' is the dried version of cilantro. In most of the rest of the world coriander is the combination of the fresh leaves and seeds of cilantro. For this recipe fresh cilantro should be used.
The wildlife of Costa Rica should not be missed. The country is the size of West Virginia and boasts more species of birds than the U.S. and Canada combined. The diversity of their animal species places Costa Rica as one of the most biodiverse countries anywhere in the world. Seeing the animals has been paramount in the trips I’ve taken and this one was no exception. This time we toured each on horseback and by boat which were great alternative methods.