22 May 2013

Breakfast in Costa Rica

Good morning everyone! I found some very pretty "Champagne" mangoes at Sam's the other day and they made me homesick for Costa Rica. I made all kinds of wonderful beverages with the mangoes on the farm there. Of course we also had loads of other fruits to add to our juices, star fruit, mandarines, mora (a Costa Rican blackberry), bananas as sweet and creamy as vanilla ice cream, several varieties of oranges and water apples, (which we seldom got any of since the birds and small Tico children usually got to them first!) Today I think  I am going to share one of my favorites, made with mango, pineapple, apples, carrots and oranges. The ones I made in Costa Rica actually used mandarines instead of oranges from the huge grove of trees on the farm, but since we are here in the States, I will have to substitute oranges for the mandarines and added carrots to give it more body.  It is a meal in itself!

There were several varieties of mangoes on the farm, but predominantly Tommy Atkins mango, which is the large mango usually found in the grocery stores in the USA starting in late April or early May, and the Ataulfo mango, which is known stateside as the "Champagne" mango. The mango trees lined the lane from the farm house to the cabina for 1000 feet (about 1/5 of a mile). Where the lane terminated and the pastures began there was a huge Ataulfo mango tree that towered 100 feet into the rain forest canopy. The spread of it's branches shaded the area for 50 feet in any direction. Many beautiful tropical plants found shelter there from the pounding rains and heat of equatorial sun. In a hole in the trunk well off the ground, a pair of Keel Billed Toucans raised their young. It was one of my favorite spots on  farm and in good weather in April/May, you would find me "hiding" from the toucans, trying to get some shots of them as they flew in and out of the nest to take turns sitting on the eggs, and later to feed their young ones. The tree was the source of food and shelter for so many plants and animals it would be hard to count, but I know for a fact that we were well fed from it's bounty!

 Mango Tango
This drink is rich and flavorful, sweet but not over the top, with a nice warm after zing from the cayenne. This is a breakfast all by itself and will hold me until lunch with no problem!

2 mangoes skin and seeds removed (see Much Adieu About Mangoes for an easy way to prepare a mango)
2 oranges, peeled and broken into small sections ( for Juicer) or if using a blender juice 2-3 oranges with handheld citrus juicer, or 3/4 to 1 cup orange juice from the store.
1 1/2 cup fresh pineapple, or 1 cup pineapple juice
1 apple, cored and cut into 6-8 pieces, (for Juicer), or if using blender 1 cup apple juice.
4 large carrots , tops removed, or if using blender 1 cup bottled fresh carrot juice
Juice of 1 lemon
1/8 tsp. cayenne, or less according to preferences.

 This is best done in a juicer since it is hard to get apples and carrots smooth enough in a blender. If you don't have a juicer, it can be done in a blender, I would just suggest that you use bottled juice for the apple and carrots and possibly the pineapple.

For Juicer:
Put all the fruit through the juicer and add cayenne to the catch pitcher and stir. Chill if desired.
For Blender:
Blend mango and pineapple, adding juices and cayenne as you blend. (If you don't enjoy as much zing as I do, you can cut down on the cayenne or leave it out, but if you can, try to leave some of the cayenne in for the health benefits.)

This also makes great refreshing pop sickles, but if you're making them for the kids you might want to leave out the cayenne!

I thought it might be fun to have breakfast in Costa Rica, so I am including a video of the toucans on the farm where we lived in Costa Rica! So make your Mango Tango and take a trip with me to see the Toucans! Many thanks to my dear husband who spent many hours sifting through all the video I shot to compile this video clip for me! Unfortunately size restrictions prevent me from posting the video at a good resolution, so some of the detail in the birds is lost, but you will get the idea anyway! I hope you enjoy!

Blog Hops this post is linked to:
Frugal Days, Sustainable Ways #73
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