Three weeks or so after I met Arturo, he invited me to his house for a dinner party. Nestled in a corner of the kitchen, I took up the post of bartender. It turned out to be a great way to meet all of his friends in a no-pressure way (not to mention I was the delivery point for a refreshing concoction of fresh squeezed citrus juices and vodka, which made me a pretty popular gal). My post was also a perfect observation point for the night, during which I saw all of the guests participate in making this dinner come together. Chopping, cooking, cleaning, laughing, talking, drinking… the pace went from busy to complete chaos, and then the threads of each dish somehow came together at the table. I think we ate around 10 or 11, and everything was delicious.
During subsequent dinners my level of participation raised by notches – helping to plan the menu and shop, taking the lead on a dish or two, playing DJ, and eventually partnering with Arturo on the overall orchestration of the dinner. Our basic premise is this – we plan the menu, we buy the ingredients, we supply ample drinks, great music and great company. You all show up and are full participants in the whole dinner preparation. At the end, many toasts, hugs and kisses later, Arturo and I head to bed with our bellies and our hearts full. And this, dear readers, is where lovefoodmusic was really born.
If I was missing our lovefoodmusic dinners in Costa Rica, this past weekend went beyond expectations. We had a group of about 15, a mix of Americans and Costa Ricans, and we rented the house next door, Casa de Los Suenos, so we could be together on the beach. Breakfasts were at Feliz and lunches and dinners were at Suenos, so we could enjoy the pool (ahhh, the pool…) before and after dinner.
We are blessed with wonderful friends, and one of them happens to be an extremely talented chef. Roy had a tapas bar in Barcelona for a time, and also lived in Chicago, and now lives in San Jose, Costa Rica. Roy planned our Saturday early dinner and Sunday lunch, and truly did not disappoint.
I could not think of a better way to spend the weekend then by making my way from beach to pool to kitchen to table (with a mojito or cold beer in hand, of course!). What could be better than a weekend of lovefoodmusic?
Friday Night Dinner
Grilled Corvina Entero (whole fish) with garlic, lime juice and olive oil
Arugula, tomato, cucumber, carrot salad with Joya’s dressing
Rice and beans
Scrambled eggs with tomato and basil
Gallo pinto (traditional Costa Rican dish of beans and rice with onions and peppers)
Saturday Late Lunch / Early Dinner
Jicama, cucumber, orange salad with lime juice vinaigrette
Avocado salad (like a guacamole but much chunkier)
Angú (which Roy calls “Costa Rican Hummus”)
Seafood and chicken paella
Tomato, onion, hearts of palm salad
Pastel de Azteca (a Mexican dish similar to lasagna but with tortillas instead of pasta)
“Good Enuff” Playlist
(upbeat reggae music for cooking and pool time)
|Good Enuff||Major Lazer Feat. Collie Buddz & Lindi Ortega|
|We’re Gonna Make It||Damian “Jr. Gong” Marley|
|Marcus Garvey||Burning Spear|
|Duppy Conqueror (Fort Knox Five Remix)||Bob Marley|
|Pressure Drop||Toots & The Maytals Feat. Eric Clapton|
|You don’t love me (no no no)||Dawn Penn|
|400 Years||Bob Marley & The Wailers|
|Here Comes The Hotstepper||Inikamoze|
|The Harder They Come||Jimmy Cliff|
|Get Busy||Sean Paul|
|Mellow Mood||Bob Marley|
|Khaki Suit||Damian “Jr. Gong” Marley|
|007 (Shanty Town)||Desmond Dekker|
|Natural Mystic||Bob Marley & The Wailers|
|Kinky Reggae||Bob Marley|
|Sitting in Limbo||Jimmy Cliff|
|Sweet And Dandy||Toots & The Maytals|
|Legalize It||Peter Tosh|
|Spear Burning||Burning Spear|
|Two Sevens Clash||Culture|
|For the Babies||Damian “Jr. Gong” Marley|
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