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Thursday, January 7, 2016

Food in Costa Rica: Healthy, Cheap, & Naturally Growing!

Food Forests!
Imagine harvesting bounties of super foods from your garden everyday. You step into a forest of fruit trees, wild spinach, medicinal herbs, and more! Everything is well established and grows naturally, because you cultivated a food forest.

Permaculture farming works within the local ecosystem to promote natural growth. Food is cultivated based on what naturally occurs. It’s as simple as looking to nature for inspiration. What are the plants that naturally grow in the area? What are their uses for food, medicine, and more? Learn about these plants and promote their long term establishment in your garden.
The Fruition Center food forest is a six-year project in the process. Co-founder Jason Bliss says there are easily 100 different plants that are grown and cultivated. Here are some of our favorites: Moringa, Cranberry Hibiscus, Cucaracha, Rubarb Spinch, and Achote (crush seeds for a natural dye and paint). Pictures are below:

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We have also learned:
Ginger is a “carrier” herb, which stimulates the absorption and circulation of other herbs it accompanies.
Tea made from cornsilk will treat urinary problems including kidney stones. This is great for anyone who suffers from kidney stones. Just dry a bunch of organic corn silk and drink this tea on a daily basis.
Aloe Vera will treat many skin problems such as sunburns, acne, insect bites, fungal infections, and more. Replace harmful store bought products with an aloe plant to make your skin glow!

Cacao is delicious and nutritious! It is the base of chocolate. Roast seeds to eliminate trace amounts of neurotoxins. Grind it up and add it to teas, smoothies, and desserts. It’s the flavor of chocolate without the refined sugar!
Hibiscus flowers have a velvety texture. They don’t have much flavor, but will add beautiful color to salads.

Ongoing Recipes

Salsa Con Lettuce Leaves
Here is our first raw dinner for about $6. Mix avocado, sliced pepper, tomato, garlic, cilantro, coconut, mango, and banana. Use lettuce leaves as wraps.

Bean Dip with Cucumber Slices
Mix black beans with tomatoes, cilantro, garlic, and lemon. Use cucumbers slices like chips.

Breakfast Granola Mix
This is a  quick and healthy one to start the day with energy. Mix granola with mashed ripe bananas, then sprinkly crushed cacao over top. It all blends together great!

Other meals:
Forest forged salads, comidas tipicas, homemade tortillas, vegan ice creams (banana, mango, coconut), ceviche, avocado mash...

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