Mahina Tiare's crew enjoying a hearty soup
As I snuggle down in the depths of the Pacific NW winter I enjoy catching up on the news of fellow cruisers scattered about the planet but a recent from our dear friends Dorothy and Tom Wadlow on Joyant caught me by surprise. We'd last shared and anchorage together in Norway in 2007 along with a tasty introduction to tortilla soup and Dorothy and recipe featured in March 2008 Galley Essentials. The last I knew they of them they were cruising the US East Coast so news on their exploration of the Patagonian fjords caught me by surprise.
We had Joyant launched 2 days after arriving in PuertoMont, Chile and after a week of commissioning and provisioning we headed south. Our cruise took us 350 "crow" miles south, which with diversions will be more than 1,000 total actual miles round trip. We sailed south along the east side of the Gulf of Ancud inside ChiloeIsland, across the Boca del Guafo and then inside another archipelago to the Laguna San Rafael and back. On the northbound portion we stayed west and visited different places. San Rafael is a national park, the site of the largest Chilean tidewater glacier. It was nice to be back in the ice again - Joyant's 6th season in ice strewn waters.
Along the way we have had many interesting experiences. One has been using shore tie lines in addition to our anchor as due to the often windy, deep, and narrow harbors it is frequently necessary to tie to shore for safe mooring. And then there is rapidly changing weather. I guess you could say it's like Seattle but with wind and real rain, not the drizzle they get. Actually it has not been that bad-or maybe you just get used to it. Most of our nights were spent in areas with little or no sign of civilization. We were the only cruising boat in 100% of our anchorages.
The most challenging and rewarding of our wilderness adventures was KentIsland. The entrance to a large interior waterway is through two tide gates and that turned out to be a bit sketchy as the whole area is uncharted. From the anchorage it's a ¼ mile hike to a sandy beach open to the Pacific. To mark the path, cruisers have hung bottles with their boat and crew information on a paper inside. We, of course, followed the practice with the wine bottle from the night before. It's certainly an interesting spot for bird watching as where else can you see penguins and parrots in the same anchorage?
Joyant's travelogue had me reminiscing of our own Patagonian adventures. Sailing to Cape Horn in 1994 was my first season of temperate expeditions and I quickly learnt that hearty soups were a welcome lunch. I've since honed my soup-making skills and on our recent inside passage trip to Alaska and back as our crew were nearly mutinying on days when a piping hot soup was not on the menu. As there is most often a leftover to use I never make soups the exact recipe but the following recipes are a great start to warm any soul on a chilly day.
Lentil Soup with Prosciutto
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
3 tablespoons olive oil
1/3 cup prosciutto - shredded
1 onion - diced
1 rib celery - diced
1 carrot - diced
1 14.5oz can whole tomatoes with juice - crushed
1 cup French green lentils - rinsed and drained
4 cups chicken stock
3-inch piece Parmesan rind
salt and freshly ground pepper
freshly grated Parmesan
In a large soup pot, add butter, olive oil, prosciutto and onions. Cook until onions are golden. Add carrots and celery; cook 3minutes. Add tomatoes and their juice, simmer 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add lentils, stock, Parmesan and salt and pepper to taste. Simmer until lentils are very tender, about 30 minutes. Remove Parmesan rind and serve with grated Parmesan. Serves 4-6.
Leek and Blue Cheese Soup
3 large leeks - thinly sliced
¼ cup unsalted butter
2 tablespoons olive oil
4 oz crumbled blue cheese
2 tablespoons flour
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon black pepper
6 cups chicken stick
½ cup diced scallions
additional blue cheese
In a large soup pot melt butter and olive oil. Add leeks and sauté 10minutes. Add blue cheese, stirring until cheese melts. Slowly add flour, stirring constantly until absorbed. Add mustard and black pepper. Add stock and bring to a boil while stirring. Reduce heat, cover and simmer for 15 minutes. Serve garnished with blue cheese and scallions.
Pressure Cooker Spicy Pinto Bean and Ham Soup
1 cup pinto beans - soaked overnight
4 teaspoons olive oil
1 onion - diced
1½ cups diced ham
1 14-oz can diced tomatoes and juice
4 cups chicken stock
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 can diced green Anaheim chilies
½ cup chopped fresh cilantro
scallions - diced
Drain beans and add to pressure cooker with 3 cups water and 2 teaspoons olive oil. Bring to pressure and cook 8 minutes. Release pressure and drain beans into a colander. Clean pressure cooker and place on stove. Heat 2 teaspoons olive oil and saute onions until soft. Add cumin and chilies, cook 2 minutes. Add beans, tomatoes, and stock. Bring to pressure and cook 3 minutes. Release pressure, add cilantro and serve soup garnish with scallions. Serves 4.
A fast-disappearing ginger carrot soup
Ginger Carrot Soup
3 tablespoons olive oil
6 large carrots - chopped
2 shallots - chopped
4 cloves garlic - chopped
2 cups vegetable stock
2 cups water
1 tablespoon grated ginger
3 pinches saffron threads
1 tablespoon chopped carrot greens or parsley
1 bay leaf
salt and pepper
In a large soup pot sauté shallots and carrots in olive oil for 10 minutes. Add garlic and salt and pepper to taste. Add remaining ingredients, bring all to a boil then lower heat and simmer, covered, 25 minutes. Remove bay leaf and puree.
Thai Grilled Corn Soup
2 cups vegetable broth
1 14-oz. can of light coconut milk
1 tablespoon red curry paste
2 ears of fresh corn - shucked and grilled, kernels removed from the cob
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
1 tablespoon lime zest
1 tablespoon Tamari soy sauce
¼ teaspoon kosher salt
fresh red hot Thai chili pepper - thinly sliced
In a soup pot over medium heat combine broth, coconut milk, and curry; simmer 2 minutes. Add corn and simmer 3 minutes. Remove from heat, add lime juice, zest, Tamari and salt. Serve garnished with cilantro and chili pepper. Serves 4.
Located halfway between Tonga and the Cook Islands the small island of Niue has led itself to being a nation all of their own, mainly due to its remoteness and cultural differences from its Polynesian neighbors. When approaching from sea Niue looks flat with coral limestone cliffs that resemble ‘Swiss cheese'. The island is approximately 45 miles in circumference around a central forested plateau and you'll not find long white sandy beaches but small secluded sandy coves nestled in between turquoise grottoes that lead to a rugged fringing reef. Local's affectionately call Niue "The Rock" and welcome visitors to their small paradise.
A weekly potluck is hosted by the Niue Yacht Club which meets at Niue Backpackers hostel and it's a fun time mixing with locals, visitors and cruisers. At a recent potluck I was chatting with an interesting chap about his bee keeping. When I asked him numerous questions, Cory inquired why I was interested in bees and I explained that although I'd never kept bees I'd always held a fascination of them. He mentioned that they were currently having a working party at his apiary and asked if I'd like to help.
On arrival at the Niue Honey Company I was kitted out in an oversized bee-keeping outfit and went to work with Cory and Matthew inspecting three hives that had recently been discovered in the forest. Cory bought the Niue Honey company 14 years ago and although it was established in 1960 the hives had long since been abandoned. His first job, with the help of locals, was to set about finding the 200 or so hives that were scattered about the islands forest and survey the health of the bees. The bees are Italian Yellow honey bees and fortunately there are no signs of European Foulbrood, Colony Collapse Disorder or Varroa and Tracheal mites nor has insecticides, antibiotics or antifungal agents been used. The bees gather from the wild flowers of coconut palms and other forest flora, including the medicinal shrub noni, creating a 100% pure, raw, natural amber liquid honey. Cory and his small team have increased the number of hives from 230 to 1,000 and currently produce 25 tons of honey annually.
Bees are crucial to the reproduction and diversity of flowering plants. They pollinate more than 130 fruit, vegetable, and seed crops we rely on; that's about one third of our diet. Cory views his mission at Niue Honey more than a money making venture; it's a duty to help save the world's honey bees. Working with the local community and in part helped by Niue's isolation Cory is creating a stronghold of healthy honey bees. Along those lines Mark L. Winston's new book "Bee Time: Lessons from the Hive" is a fascinating read while the 2010 documentary film Queen of the Sun: What Are the Bees Telling Us? directed by Taggart Siegel is eye opening.
Sadly bee numbers are declining worldwide so here's some ways you can help.
•Stop using insecticides
•Encourage the planting of bee-friendly plants and natural habit gardens
•Create a water source in your yard for pollinators
Support your local beekeepers.
I thoroughly enjoyed helping out on the hives and in exchange I was given some wonderful honey that inspired the following recipes.
Inspecting a bee hive under the watchful eye of Cory and Matthew
Honey and Date Granola
3 cups rolled oats
½ cup flax seed
1/3 cup honey
¼ cup coconut oil
2 tablespoons maple syrup
1 teaspoon cinnamon
½ teaspoon each of nutmeg, ground ginger, ground cloves, allspice and salt
¼ cup pecans
½ cup dates - pitted and chopped
½ cup golden/Inca berries
Preheat oven to 350°F. Mix together oats and flax seeds. In a small bowl whisk spices together. In a saucepan over medium heat melt together coconut oil, honey and maple syrup. Whisk in spice mixture. Combine wet ingredients with oats. Spread granola mix onto a baking sheet and bake 30 minutes adding pecans in the last 5 minutes. Remove from oven and mix in dried fruit.
Baked Honey-Marinated Fish
4 6-oz white fish fillets
¾ cup honey
½ cup low-sodium soy sauce
1/3 cup toasted sesame seed oil
1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
1½ teaspoons freshly ground pepper
1 teaspoon chopped fresh ginger
Combine all ingredients (except for fish) in a medium dish. Add cod and marinate 24 hours, turning fish after 12 hours. Remove fish, place on baking sheet covered in parchment paper and bake at 450° F for 10 minutes until fish is opaque and easily flakes. Serve with brown rice and steamed vegetables.
Lemon-Honey Lamb Stir-Fry
1 lb green beans
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 lbs boneless lamb shoulder - sliced
1 red onion - sliced
2 red bell peppers - sliced
2 tablespoons honey
juice of 1 lemon
¼ cup fresh cilantro - chopped
1 tablespoon sesame seeds
salt and fresh ground pepper
Bring a large pot of water to a boil, add beans and blanch 2 minutes. Heat olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add lamb and stir fry until browned. Set aside. Add onions and bell pepper and cook until soft, about 2 minutes. Add beans and cook 2 minutes. Return lamb, add the honey, lemon juice, cilantro, sesame seeds, salt and pepper. Stir-fry until honey coats the ingredients, about 2 minutes. Garnished with cilantro and serve with wild rice. Serves 6.
Moroccan Chicken with Honey and Apricots
2 teaspoons olive oil
1 onion - chopped
4 chicken breasts - diced
1 teaspoon Ras el Hanout
1 teaspoon harissa sauce
1 tablespoons honey
½ cup dried apricots - diced
½ cup sliced almonds
6 carrots - cut into chunks
1 15-oz can chickpeas - drained
3 celery stalks - chopped
1 tablespoon fresh parsley
1 tablespoon fresh cilantro
½ cup white wine or chicken broth
salt and pepper
In a large pot over medium heat sauté onion in oil. Add next eleven ingredients and heat through. Deglaze with wine. Cover and simmer until chicken is cooked; about 30 minutes. Season to taste. Garnish with sliced almonds and cilantro and serve with couscous. Serves 4.
Honey Baked Plums
1 1/8 lbs plums - halved and stoned
1 vanilla pod
1 cinnamon stick
3/4 cup orange juice
2 tablespoons honey
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Greek yoghurt and walnuts - for serving
Preheat oven to 360°F. Arrange plums in an oven dish, skin side down. Slice vanilla pod and remove seeds. Mix seeds with orange juice, honey and ground cinnamon. Pour mix over plums and add vanilla pod a nd cinnamon stick. Bake 25 miutes. Serve with yoghurt and nuts. Serves 4.
This month's Galley Essentials is from my friend Dorothy.
In 2000 my husband, Steve, and I launched Adagio, our 52' sailing catamaran, designed by Gino Morrelli and Pete Melvin. Adagio is an Italian musical term meaning slow and graceful. Although Adagio is fast over the water, she represents the pas de deux in ballet, danced to Adagio music, in which strength, skill and hard work result in creating the illusion of grace and beauty. We've been cruising the Pacific for fourteen years and last year we cruised from New Zealand to New Caledonia and back. This year we're sailing back to Alaska then Seattle to visit family and you're welcome to view our adventures at adagiojournal.com.
Steve and I had tried tennis, golf, etc., and found that we both enjoyed sailing together the best. We raced monohulls for many years beginning in 1970, and chartered in different countries. After every yacht charter we wanted to continue sailing rather than go back home so we knew that we wanted to go cruising. We attended the Mahina Offshore Cruising Seminar and I sailed aboard Mahina Tiare on a very exciting passage from New Zealand to Tahiti in 1998.
I'm pretty easy going, a bit nerdy, outdoorsy and I love to cook so we designed Adagio's "U"-shaped galley so that I will have everything that I need at hand while I am cooking. Our goal is to have healthy, gourmet meals using the least amount of electricity, water and time to prepare. The galley is located in the main salon, surrounded 360 degrees by windows, for enjoying the view and helping keep watch. There's double sinks, a two-burner stove top, microwave/convection oven under the counter, refrigerator and dishwasher.
I do the provisioning and cooking, Steve does the washing up unless he's in the middle of repairing boat gear. When we have friends aboard, a second person is a welcome help in making more extensive meals. We're eating more fruits, vegetables, eggs and fish, and less meat so a large wok, with a screen spatter lid and a glass lid for steaming, has become my most frequently used pot. My recipes have become simpler - no more than 5 or 6 ingredients as I can't be bothered measuring out 6 kinds of spices for one main dish.
Quick Jambalaya with Smoked Chicken
3 tablespoon olive oil
1 onion - sliced
1 green pepper - sliced
5 cloves garlic - chopped
1 cup long grain rice
1½ inches of chorizo sausage - sliced
2 cups chicken broth - hot
12 oz cooked smoked chicken breast - diced
Heat oil in a pan, add the onion and pepper, sauté 5 minutes. Add garlic, chorizo and rice, cook 3 minutes. Add broth, ½ cup at a time, waiting until ingredients are simmering before adding more. Cover and simmer until the rice is cooked, 15 minutes then add chicken. Serves 4.
Brussels Sprouts Medley
4 tablespoons olive oil
1 lb. brussels sprouts - cut in half
3 carrots - cut in half lengthwise then sliced into half-moons
4 garlic cloves - chopped
1 onion - sliced
1/3 cup pitted olives
salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 14-oz can crushed tomatoes with juices
½ cup chicken broth
In a large wok over high heat heat olive oil and saute all ingredients, except tomatoes and broth 5 minutes. Add tomatoes and broth, cover and reduce heat to medium. Stir after 3 minutes. Continue steaming vegetables until the brussels sprouts are tender but still crisp.
When provisioning we try to find the freshest fruits and vegetables and non-refrigerated eggs, next is the leanest meat containing no bones. In preparation for a passage I make dukkah, Kalamata olive dip, biscotti, cookies, and maybe an apple cake along with soups and stews which I freeze. We make ice cream, use milk powder to make yoghurt and also fish on passages. I've had a couple of provisioning mishaps due to translation. In New Caledonia I unintentionally came home with lamb's brains and in Yugoslavia I selected five bottles of apple juice because of the label picturing apples, so thankfully the cashier asked if I intended to buy five bottles of vinegar.
3 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
1½ cups canola oil
3 large eggs
2 cups brown sugar
1 tablespoon cinnamon
½ teaspoon nutmeg
1 tablespoon dark rum
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 apples - peeled, cored and diced
½ cup dried cranberries
½ cup whole almonds
Preheat oven to 350°F, butter and flour a 12-cup bundt pan. In a medium bowl, combine flour, baking soda and salt. In a larger bowl, whisk together the oil, eggs, sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, rum, and vanilla. Fold in flour mix then apples, cranberries and almonds. Bake until a knife inserted into the cake comes out clean, about 1¼ hours. Serve plain or with a rum sauce and whipped cream.
Thai Fish Cakes
1½ tablespoons bottled fish sauce
¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons toasted sesame seed oil
1 lb. white fish fillets - cut into 1-inch chunks
1 onion - sliced
3 garlic cloves - minced
1 tablespoon fresh ginger - minced
½ teaspoon fresh chopped chilies
1 teaspoon white flour
fresh chopped cilantro
canola oil to cook the cakes
In a large bowl, combine fish sauce, pepper and egg. Heat sesame seed oil in a wok or frying pan and sauté onion, garlic and ginger until onion is transparent. Add fish and chili sauce, cook until fish is nearly cooked. Remove from heat and slowly stir in flour. Add fish mix to egg mix and blend, preferably with an electric hand mixer wand, until well-mixed but still chunky, add cilantro. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a wok. Using 1/3 cup measure form fish cakes and cook them both sides until light brown. Remove to a pre-heated plate and serve with Thai cucumber sauce.
Thai Cucumber Sauce
1 cucumber - seeds removed and diced small
1/3 cup mirin (sweet cooking rice wine)
4 tablespoon white vinegar
1/3 cup fresh cilantro - chopped
1/3 cup chopped green onions
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon garlic - minced
1 tablespoon ginger - minced
1 tablespoon toasted sesame seed oil
1 tablespoon sweet chili sauce
1 tablespoon honey (optional)
Combine all ingredients.
My advice to you is cook what you enjoy eating. I have a good appetite at sea which helps inspire me to use what needs to be eaten. Be adventurous. I love to cook for other people and provision with food to share. A nice way to repay people who do you a favor is to bake them something or invite them for a meal. For more recipes tips and tricks sail on to cookingaboardadagio.com.
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