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Amanda brings you Galley Essentials gally essentials galley essentials


galley jan 2017

When Marie Claude and I met at the 2010 Vancouver Boat Show she said she was keen to go cruising. Now for several years I've been following her blog and recently had the chance to ask about her galley life.

While on our latest Spitsbergen expedition I reconnected with Eli. We’d first met in 2000 so had plenty to catch up. In the limited time we had together I was able to convince write about her galley, although she was very reluctant as she was worried about her English grammar. I assured her it was grand, especially compared to my non existing Norwegian. Thanks Eli!

I learned to sail in 1996 when I met my husband Hans, he loved to sail and had always have been sailing. After our first summer together on his boat, he gave me a sailing course as a gift. It was a gift I am very thankful for, as I think it`s better to learn from someone other than one’s own husband.

I’m a school teacher in Oslo and grew up in Norway. I have always loved outdoor activities. When I was a child my family went on camping tours many weekends and every summer and winter holiday. Sometimes we went to places by the sea but more often to the woods or mountains. When I was older I went on ski and kayak tours with my friends and we stayed in either tents or cabins. It was natural to take part as a crew when I went sailing with Hans and continue the outdoor life with the sailboat.

Every summer we go cruising for 8-10 weeks on Anna; our 1995 aluminum 39’ Dick Koopman sloop. Anna is the name of Hans’ grandmother. Our general cruising areas are the North Sea, North Atlantic out to the Faeroes and Barents Sea up to Svalbard. In our cruising waters we rarely do more than 2 nights at sea before arriving at our destination so we no longer cook complete meals while offshore. Instead we heat water and for freeze dried meals which we eat out of their bags but if the conditions are extraordinarily good I make pasta with tomato sauce.

Pasta with tomato sauce

6oz pasta
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 onion - diced
3 garlic cloves - diced
1 can corned beef
1 can chopped tomatoes
red hot dried chili - to taste
Parmesan cheese

Cook pasta. Sauté onion in olive oil. Add garlic and corned beef; cook 5 minutes. Add tomatoes and chili and cook for as long as you want (it’s tastier the longer it cooks) Serve tomato sauce with pasta and Parmesan.

In the galley we have a three burner kerosene Taylor stove with oven and a fridge which we only use for coastal cruising as when offshore and in the high arctic we use the bilge to store food that needs to be kept cool. My galley priorities are a sharp knife, wooden spoon and large cutting board. We use drinking bottles with built in filters as sometimes we fill our water tanks from rivers. We always have a thermos with hot water for drinks and snacks like noodles. I have a couple of containers with air tight lids for leftovers and when I open boxes and bags of food items I transfer it to my own storage containers. Our main priority is KISS! Hans is only willing to maintain "essential systems", we have no pressurized water or hot water.

Eli’s favorite galley items

I do the cooking and the provisioning. I never do the dishwashing, that’s my husband’s responsibility. For provisions, I ensure there’s enough onions, garlic, canned tomatoes, spices and of course carrots for snacks. We have plenty of oats for making breakfast porridge. Lunches are generally crisp bread and canned mackerel or tuna. For making dinner I have rice, pasta and mashed potatoes, canned ham, corned beef, beans and lentils. I stock up on plenty of other foods like oil, coconut milk, flour, Thai curry paste, mustard, cheeses, peanut butter, canned condensed or powdered milk and eggs. There’s a locker with freeze dried meals and biscuits plus a drawer with chocolate, peanuts and chewing gum. Along with canned food we have smoked and dried meat and dried salted cod made by my parents.


1 1lb dried salted cod (soaked in fresh water for approx. 24 hours)
¾ cup olive oil
8 potatoes - peeled and sliced
3 onions - sliced
2 cans chopped tomatoes
2 red hot chili peppers - diced

Dice the fish. Heat the oil in a large sauce pan. Layer fish, potatoes, onions, tomatoes and chili: you should have enough ingredients for 2-3 layers. Simmer for 1 hours, or shorter if you use pressure cooker. Serve with bread. Serves 4.

Chicken Curry

2 chicken breasts - diced
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons red curry paste
2 garlic cloves
1 teaspoon ground paprika
2 teaspoons dried basil
1 can coconut milk
¼ cup water

In a large pan heat oil over medium heat. Add spices then chicken and sauté until meat is cooked. Add coconut milk, cook for at least 10 minutes or longer until sauce thickens. Serve with rice. Serves 2.

Our worst galley event happened many years ago when spent a long summer sailing the Baltic. Hans had quit his job so were on a limited budget. Lentils and beans became a staple part of our diet and we would soak the beans in a container in the bilge. When friends joined us for a week in Gotland they were quite vocal in that beans were not part of their usual diet and they would rather do without. No problems as they also volunteered to do the shopping. It was one of those sizzling hot summers in the Baltic and when our crew left we remembered with had pre-soaked beans lying in the bilge. When we opened the container the beans had basically "gone bacterial". We never really got rid of the smell of rotten beans.

Lentil Salad

2 cups green lentils
3 tablespoon lemon juice
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 onion - diced
1 red hot chili pepper - minced
3 cloves garlic - crushed
salt and pepper
extra ingredients: olives, diced hard boiled eggs, feta cheese, diced peppers, diced tomatoes, olives or whatever you like.

Cook lentils. In a large fry pan add lentils, lemon juice, oil, onion, garlic and chili: heat through. Remove from heat and add extra ingredients.

Our most memorable meal was in the most unsuspected place! After a 6-week cruise on W and N coast of Spitsbergen we were in Hornsund waiting for a weather window for return passage to the Norwegian mainland. One morning we awoke to find our German friends Peter and Lore Vörsmann on SV "Orion" anchored 100m away from us, having just arrived from the mainland. They’d brought with them fresh meat and served us steaks and fresh vegetables from the grill the following evening.



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