Wednesday, May 04, 2011
Tuesday, May 03, 2011
Saturday, April 30, 2011
Monday, April 25, 2011
Saturday, April 23, 2011
Wednesday, April 20, 2011
A short while ago, I stumbled upon this article from International Living magazine about the healthiest places to live. I was a little bit surprised to find that three of the five mentioned in the article are places in Latin America. In class, we discussed a lot of aspects of life in Latin America, such as political instability and extremely high rates of poverty, which would almost lead me to believe otherwise.
However, when I looked at the reasons why International Living featured locations in Panama, Costa Rica and Ecuador, it all made sense. “Optimism and purpose, a low stress level, a natural diet and an active lifestyle…”, they say, are they most important factors that lead to a long and healthy life. Latin America’s prominence in the article seems to be a wonderful testament to the lifestyle and natural beauty that is often found in Latin America.
In fact, this article made me remember why I took an interest in Latin America in the first place – the wonderful, entertaining Mexicans, Ticos, Argentines and Colombians that I met during three years of being involved Spanish language immersion camp.
Monday, April 18, 2011
Friday, April 15, 2011
Thursday, April 14, 2011
Wednesday, April 13, 2011
Tuesday, April 12, 2011
Monday, April 11, 2011
Sunday, April 10, 2011
Saturday, April 09, 2011
Friday, April 08, 2011
Thursday, April 07, 2011
When one thinks of natural wonders in South America, most think of either the Amazon River or the Andes Mountain Range. However, South America is rich in natural wonders that many people have no idea exist. One excellent example is Tierra del Fuego. Tierra del Fuego is the archipelago separated from the rest of South America by the Strait of Magellan. The main island, Isla Grande de Tierra del Fuego, is owned by both Chile and Argentina, both of which have settlements on the island. Though the island may be separated, the unique flora and fauna can be found everywhere. Though the climate is very cold, there are six species of trees that grow there. These trees have actually been replanted in places with a similar climate in which people once thought nothing would grow. The fauna is diverse and interesting, including the Austral Parakeet, the Firecrown Hummingbird, and the condor. Along with these, there are Sea Run Brown Trout, which make Tierra del Fuego one of the best places for trout fishing in the world. For more information, visit this website.
A gunman opened fire in an elementary school in Rio de Janeiro and at least 13 people are dead, authorities said.http://www.nytimes.com/pages/world/americas/index.html
Tuesday, April 05, 2011
Also known as "danza Paraguaya," the Paraguayan polka is a popular music style created in the 19th century. Paraguayan polka is very different than regular polka music, as it is vibrant, upbeat, and exciting. It combines two different types of rhythms. There are several different versions of the Paraguayan polka, such as "polca popo" and "polca saraki." It is danced in pairs by linking arms. For more information, visit this site.
This article discusses the results of Haiti's election for a new president, held last month. Martelly is best known for being a carnival musician, and has the nickname of Tete Kale, or Bald Head. Results have been delayed due to fraud but the final decision is expected next week.
Monday, April 04, 2011
Saturday, April 02, 2011
Friday, April 01, 2011
Thursday, March 31, 2011
Born José Rafael Hernández y Pueyrredón on November 10, 1834, José Hernández was a prominent Argentinian journalist, poet, and politician. He was best known for his poem "Martín Fierro," which was essentially a protest against the current Argentinian president, Domingo Faustino Sarmiento. The poem was translated into over 70 languages and has become a symbol of the Argentinian identity. Hernández also founded El Río de la Plata, an Argentinian newspaper which was based on his federalist political views. Hernández died on October 21, 1886 of heart disease.
Wednesday, March 30, 2011
Monday, March 28, 2011
MEXICO CITY — Carlos Pascual, the American ambassador here who resigned last week, had hoped to withstand the fierce storm caused by the release of diplomatic cables revealing his private criticism of Mexico’s fight against organized crime....
Several years ago Lance Winters, the head distiller for Hangar One in California, concocted a limited batch of chipotle vodka by infusing fresh, dried and smoked chilies. The demand outpaced supply. Finally, he has been able to triple the production, and the vodka is now being sold across the country. In addition to japaleños and chipotles (smoked jalapeños), he also uses habaneros for heat, and bell peppers for vegetal richness. The result, 80 proof, has a pale straw color, peppery complexity, haunting smoke and an almost tequilalike greenness to the flavor, making it a spirit to savor on the rocks, to mix in a bloody mary or margarita or to season ceviche.
Hangar One Chipotle Vodka is $38 for 750 milliliters at Park Avenue Liquor Shop; $32.99 at Prospect Wine Shop in Park Slope, Brooklyn; and $29.99 from klwines.com.
Sunday, March 27, 2011
Saturday, March 26, 2011
Friday, March 25, 2011
Out of the many mountain ranges in the world, the Andes Mountain Range is one of the most interesting. One very distinguishing feature is the fact that the Andes are the longest continental mountain range in the world. Because they are so large, it would make sense that they would play an important role in the environment of South America. There are so many types of flora indeginous to the Andes that it is the most diverse hotspot in the world. The Andes also provide a home to many animals. These range from the endangered Chinchilla, to the culturally important Cougar and Llama, to a variety of amphibians which make the Andes the most important spot for amphibians. For more information on the Andes, visit this site, or this site.
Thursday, March 24, 2011
Wednesday, March 23, 2011
Tuesday, March 22, 2011
Monday, March 21, 2011
Sunday, March 20, 2011
Saturday, March 19, 2011
Friday, March 18, 2011
Moqueca is a traditional Brazilian seafood stew. Moqueca has been made for the past 300 years. It consists of fish, onion, tomatoes, garlic, cilantro, and whatever additional ingredients you choose. There are two variants of Moqueca, Moqueca Capixaba in the Southeast and Moqueca Baiana in the Northeast. It's very easy to make and takes less than an hour. It is served with rice or crusty bread. Enjoy!
- 1 1/2 to 2 lbs of fillets of firm white fish such as halibut, swordfish, or cod, rinsed in cold water, pin bones removed, cut into large portions
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 4 Tbsp lime or lemon juice
- Freshly ground black pepper
- Olive oil
- 1 cup chopped spring onion, or 1 medium yellow onion, chopped or sliced
- 1/4 cup green onion greens, chopped
- 1/2 yellow and 1/2 red bell pepper, seeded, de-stemmed, chopped (or sliced)
- 2 cups chopped (or sliced) tomatoes
- 1 Tbsp paprika (Hungarian sweet)
- Pinch red pepper flakes
- 1 large bunch of cilantro, chopped with some set aside for garnish
- 1 14-ounce can coconut milk
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 1/2 onion, chopped
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1 cup white rice
- 1 3/4 cups boiling water (check your rice package for the appropriate ratio of liquid to rice for the type of rice you are using)
- 1 teaspoon salt
1 Place fish pieces in a bowl, add the minced garlic and lime juice so that the pieces are well coated. Sprinkle generously all over with salt and pepper. Keep chilled while preparing the rest of the soup.
2 If you are planning on serving the soup with rice, start on the rice. Bring a couple cups of water to a boil. Heat one Tbsp of olive oil in a medium saucepan on medium high heat. Add the chopped 1/2 onion and cook, stirring, until the onion is translucent. Add the garlic and cook for 30 seconds more, until the garlic is fragrant. Add the raw white rice and stir to coat completely with the oil, onions, and garlic. Add the boiling water. (The amount depends on your brand of rice, check the package. If no amounts are given, add 1 3/4 cup of water for every cup of rice.) Stir in 1 teaspoon of salt. Bring to a simmer, then lower the heat, cover, and let cook for 15 minutes, after which, remove from heat until ready to serve with the soup.
3 Back to the soup. In a large covered pan (such as a Dutch oven), coat the bottom with about 2 Tbsp of olive oil and heat on medium heat. Add the chopped onion and cook a few minutes until softened. Add the bell pepper, paprika, and red pepper flakes. Sprinkle generously with salt and pepper. (At least a teaspoon of salt.) Cook for a few minutes longer, until the bell pepper begins to soften. Stir in the chopped tomatoes and onion greens. Bring to a simmer and cook for 5 minutes, uncovered. Stir in the chopped cilantro.
3 Use a large spoon to remove about half of the vegetables (you'll put them right back in). Spread the remaining vegetables over the bottom of the pan to create a bed for the fish. Arrange the fish pieces on the vegetables. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Then add back the previously removed vegetables, covering the fish. Pour coconut milk over the fish and vegetables.
4 Bring soup to a simmer, reduce the heat, cover, and let simmer for 15 minutes. Taste and adjust seasonings. You may need to add more salt (likely), lime or lemon juice, paprika, pepper, or chili flakes to get the soup to the desired seasoning for your taste.
Garnish with cilantro. Serve with rice or with crusty bread.
Of all the parrot species, the Hyacinth Macaw is one of the most popular. It is the largest flying parrot in the world, and is characterized by its beautiful azure plumage along with distinct yellow skin around the beak, which is black, and eyes. The Hyacinth Macaw makes their nests in the holes of trees, usually laying one or two eggs, of which only one usually survives. Unfortunately, these beautiful birds are on the endangered species list. This is due to their immense popularity in the pet trade, which significantly impacts the number of wild Hyacinth Macaws, and to the fact that deforestation is reducing their natural habitat and limiting there choice of breeding spots. To learn more about Hyacinth Macaws you can visit this website.
Thursday, March 17, 2011
For days when you don't want to go out to dinner or order in, this recipe for Tortilla Soup is the perfect solution. Though it's not a traditional recipe, Rachel Ray's recipe is a take on the classic Mexican dish. It is a fairly easy recipe and never disappoints!
Wednesday, March 16, 2011
Mexico Puts Its Children on a Diet
Tuesday, March 15, 2011
The Puerto Rican coquí is a very small - tiny - tree frog about one inch long. Some coquíes look green, some brown and some yellowish - actually they are translucent. Coquíes have a high pitched sound and can be heard from far away.
The coquíes begin to sing when the sun goes down at dusk. Their melody serenades islanders to sleep. Coquíes sing all night long until dawn when they stop singing and head for the nest. Puerto Ricans love their coquíes and have written poems, stories, and Aguinaldos about them.
During the time of the Taíno Indians trillions of coquíes serenated our ancestral home. Many Taíno Indian myths surround the coquí. Coquíes are found in much of the Taíno art like pictographs and pottery.
In Puerto Rico all coquíes are called coquí even though not all sing ''co-quí''. Only two of the species the ''Coquí Común'' and the ''Coquí de la Montaña or Coquí Puertorriqueño'' actually sing ''co-quí''.
Puerto Rican coquíes have relatives all over Latin America. The coquí genre is found in all the Caribbean Islands, and in Central and South America. But again, the only ones that make the sound ''co-quí'' are Puerto Rican.
The scientific name for the coquí is Eleu-thero-dactylus, characterized because they have no webbed toes. There are 16 different species in Puerto Rico and all of them have padded discs at the end of their toes which helps them climb. Coquíes are classified as amphibians - a grouping for cold blooded vertebrates that includes frogs, toads, or newts -that are able to live in both water and land.
Contrary to frogs, the coquíes do not go through a tadpole stage and break out of their egg - a small replica of their parents. Some coquíes are terrestrial some are arboreal. The Coquí Dorado is the only specie in the world that bears live young.
The male coquí sings - not the female. That means that in Puerto Rico we hear only half the coquíes singing. The male coquí watches over the eggs. The eggs hatch in 28 days and the young coquíes remain in the nest for an additional 5 days. Again the male coquí watches over them until they leave the nest.
When there is more light either from the moon or from street lights, there are less coquíes to be heard. Therefore there are more coquíes in isolated areas like the mountains. The specie ''Puerto Rican coquí'' sings co-quí, co-quí, co-quí at dusk and changes to co-quí-quí-quí, co-quí-quí-quí, co-quí-quí-quí, at dawn. It is arboreal - climbing to the top of trees in search of insects. There it remains until dawn when it changes its song and jumps down nesting until the evening.
Coquíes are in danger of extinction and actually two of them are already extinct - the Coquí Dorado and the Coquí Palmeado. Others are endangered species like the Coquí Caoba and the Coquí de Eneida. Why are coquíes in extinction? Because of deforestation. People have destroyed their habitat or homes (nests) destroying their eggs and destroying their source of food and nourishment.
For the full story, click here: http://www.cnn.com/2011/WORLD/americas/03/15/el.salvador.filmmaker/index.html
Monday, March 14, 2011
Friday, March 04, 2011
Thursday, March 03, 2011
Wednesday, March 02, 2011
Read more here!
Tuesday, March 01, 2011
With Mardi Gras approaching quickly, many students are starting to lose their ability to focus on anything other than parades and partying. However, I believe that the Mardi Gras Season is the perfect time to think about other similar events going on in the world. Starting Saturday, March 5th, is Carnival in Rio de Janeiro. Carnival is derived from the ancient Greek and Roman celebrations of the Rites of Spring. Nowadays, the Carnival season is a time for Masquerade Balls, parades, dressing up, and having fun. For more information on Carnival in Brazil, follow this link.
Monday, February 28, 2011
Here is the full article from TIME Magazine:
Inflation in Buenos Aires has been causing prices to rise so fast that store owners have grown tired of updating the prices of products.
The “Tower of David,” a 45-story uncompleted skyscraper located in downtown Caracas, Venezuela, is one of Latin America’s tallest skyscrapers. It is also home to more than 2,500 squatters.