An Ode to Costa Rican Cuisine

Posted: November 26, 2018

It was the green sauce that opened eyes the first night
Eyelids shot to eyebrows
I swear I saw taste buds do the merengue

Three times a day we collect on wooden benches
Around endless tin trays
Making chalupas disappear in minutes
We labor on that arroz con leche though

In this country,
In the kitchen perched and peering over the hills of Atenas
From this clay and compost
The food is extraordinary
I’ve been calling SFS home since the third week here
And I know why

The red cab delivers the sun and Socorro at 6 every morning
Some mornings we cut grapes and reveal the colorful flesh of melons
They look like tokens from Mario and Luigi all naked like that
Socorro fills the air with cinnamon and toasted tortilla
The radio murmurs something about Santa Maria
This kitchen is a cathedral
This food is something holy

Some nights young Usher is in my ears and I’m singing You Make Me Wanna to my plate
You know he was really talking about that tres leches right?
…or was it a girl?
Maybe that’s not appropriate in church
But at this point Graciela has arrived and this church becomes a palace

I mean she has us eating like queens and kings

I mean she’ll have you eating the prized rice and beans alongside pasta and bread
No ditching one, no choices necessary
I mean she makes you three kinds of potatoes
I mean you may get a lentil soup or something orange and creamy coconutty
but either way spoons don’t stop
shoulders stay stooped over bowls
I mean she’s even got Jarryd pleased.

I mean, savor every second.

 
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