SAN JOSE (AFP) - Members of Costa Rica's Chinese community celebrated the arrival of the Year of the Snake by setting the world record on Tuesday for the largest amount of fried rice ever cooked.
Briton Ralph Hannah, an inspector with the Guinness World Records, certified the win after putting the giant meal - enough to feed some 7,000 people - on a scale.
The official weight: 837kg, which nearly doubles the previous record.
Armed with shovel-sized spoons, 52 cooks toiled over an enormous wok built especially for the event in San Jose's recently inaugurated Chinatown.
Some 735kg of rice were used, along with 200kg of chicken, 120kg of ham, 20kg of Chinese sausage, hundreds of eggs and vast amounts of chopped vegetables.
The Chinese Association of Costa Rica came up with the idea for the giant meal, said Mr Godwin Pang, who helped coordinate the event.
Mr Pang said the Chinese community wanted to mark the Year of the Snake, which began on Sunday, with a big event.
Most Chinese residents in Costa Rica are in the restaurant business.
Chinese restaurants can be found even in small towns across this Central American country of 4.7 million.
Mr Hannah, the Guinness representative for Latin America, said this was the first time that Costa Rica enters the world record book.