Galley provisioning needs a lot of thought if you are going blue water sailing, or on an extended coastal cruise, a lot of pre-planning needs to go into your time at sea. Start 2 or 3 months ahead and write everything that you eat and drink down in a binder.
Separate the binder into what you will need including:
• Food Provisions!
• Equipment needed!
• Marine Refrigeration!
• Favorite Recipes!
Keep track of what you eat for the same period on shore, the number of people that will be on board plus the number of meals during this time. When counting the days off shore add extra time, some say 50% more time in case of bad weather, a slow passage or even miscalculation of food needed.
Cruising builds a healthy appetite running out of food or drink, or even basic ingredients can spoil an otherwise idyllic cruise. And being hungry can bring on fatigue and impair a safe passage.
Get everything dry that is possible and store large quantities in plastic sealed containers, amounts depend on the length of your trip. It is amazing how much variety can be made from flour, rice, baking powder, yeast, powdered milk, pasta, beans, even dried potatoes and vegetables are a good stand by.
Then look at coffee, tea, long life milk, powdered drink mixes, sugar, salt and pepper, cooking oil, vinegar and sauces. Spice things up with dried herbs, chilly and then by adding some tins and frozen products.
When galley provisioning think about the times you’ll feel like pizza, pancakes, lasagna, spaghetti with different sauces, muffins in different varieties, you can whip them all up in no time with these basic ingredients. There is nothing quite like the smell and taste of freshly cooked bread when out at sea! You don’t need an oven to make it either; try using the pressure cooker or a Cob if you have one.
Dry sausages and salamis are great for pizzas and pasta, or an antipasto to have with drinks.
Protein… Meat, Cheeses & Eggs:
Meat is best vacuum packed; it’s tender and keeps longer. A variety of cheeses can be kept without marine refrigeration or months kept in preserving jars covered with virgin olive oil, and some like feta can be flavored with herbs or spices. Cheeses covered with red or yellow wax keep longer.
Keep eggs in a cool place and keep turning them. Some sailors manage without any refrigeration; it can be done with some careful galley provisioning.
Fruit & Vegetables:
Long life fruit and vegetables like pumpkin, cabbage, onions, garlic, potatoes, oranges and lemons, are good to stock up on and store in well ventilated areas; nets are great for this.
Salad vegetables, tomatoes and bananas and others that have a short shelf life store in green supermarket bags and eat early in your voyage. You can buy these provisions at markets along the way.
And when galley provisioning remember when the salad vegetables run out this is the time to think about coleslaw made from cabbage. Many sailors grow their own herbs and sprouts, if there is room and a place that is not going to get bucket loads of sea water drowning them, they help provide fiber and vitamins and liven up meals.
Have three days pre-prepared meals when galley provisioning, easy to eat when you are getting your sea legs especially if you get some heavy weather.
Even on shorter coastal trips this is wise and helps if anyone is likely to get seasick from spending time in the galley.
And don’t forget the snacks! Lots of them for sun-downers and night watch, great for an energy boost when the weather is too bad to cook.
They can range from cups of soup to chips and dips, biscuits and crackers, cheese and gherkins, energy bars whatever you fancy. And some special treats for special occasions or just for the moral if needed.
Adjust your galley provisioning according to whether you are coastal sailing, blue water sailing and the lands you will visit and availability of stores and markets.
Some countries are great with local markets and fresh produce, others be cautious of introducing ‘creepy crawlies’ to your galley.
Fresh Fish & Seafood:
And don’t forget the freshest meals can be in the sea you sail, fresh fish and other seafood caught from your yacht so have some good recipes to add variety.
And don’t forget your choice of drink be it wine, beer or spirits ( and the mixes), even when going off shore to foreign ports you are not restricted like when you are flying… just take what is a reasonable amount!
Whatever that may be… ? Ever made your own beer? It is possible on board and many sailors do, it’s a big saving too!
Last but definitely not least… water! You can’t survive without it, it is even more important than food so besides full tanks and extra containers of water, find small spaces on the boat to store bottles of filtered water.
I don’t have a water maker and yachts I’ve been on that do I don’t like the taste, and I know others feel the same way, so these bottles can be a ‘life saver.’ Or disguise the taste with a cordial.
The galley is an important part of any boat and the equipment used needs to be taken into careful consideration. If you are looking for quality, and an amazing variety to choose from at a low, low price consider shopping on line.
Galley provisioning adjusts to factors like whether you have a fridge or freezer, and there are preferences here. I have got by very well with just a big freezer, freezing what is necessary and chilling and putting into a cooler what needs to be kept cold.
I have no oven aboard my yacht just a double gas burner and grill, and like so many who cruise a big deep pan is essential for our ‘one pot’ dishes. The other saucepan I use the most is a double pot steamer.
Strong plastic containers of all sizes are an important part of the modern day galley; they keep dampness and ‘creepy crawlies’ out and have a multitude of other uses.
Fall in love with a pressure cooker, one of my most essential pieces of equipment in the galley. They are fast cooking, so save gas and in the tropics speed keeps the heat in the cabin down, and the time spent ‘slaving over a hot stove’.
Even in bad sea’s they are safe to cook in with the sealed lid and they can cook casseroles that are tasty and tender in a fraction of the time of an oven and even bake bread.
The Cobb is fantastic too; a portable cooker that can be used on any surface on the boat or ashore, and runs on a handful of heat beads. It can be used as an oven and makes delicious roasts, smokes fish, bakes bread and pizzas, and can be used as a stove or bar-b-que.
Compile some recipes’ together and make sure you have all the ingredients and equipment and put these in your binder. Not just main meals and one pot meals, but some treats to delight the crew with! Bon-Appetite!