Friday, April 9, 2021

Boat Cooking for the Small Galley

Blog copyright Janet Groene, all rights reserved

 Cook on the boat. Eat on the boat. That's living


Chili-Poached Eggs

1 can chili with beans (mild, medium or hot)
1 can chili, no beans
1 can diced tomatoes with onion and green pepper
4 to 6 extra large eggs

Optional garnishes:
Garlic croutons. sour cream, sliced scallions, grated cheese


  In a large skillet, combine chili and tomatoes. Over medium heat, bring to a shimmering simmer.  With the back of a big spoon make 4 to 6 indentations in the chili. Break eggs one at a time into a saucer and slide one into each indentation. Cover and cook over low heat 3 minutes (5 or 6 minutes if you want yolks hard).
Remove eggs to soup plates, then spoon remaining chili over eggs. Garnish as lib. 



How much flour is enough? How much rice? What are the best foods for emergencies? How can you stow meats, milk, eggs? How to plan emergency menus? Survival Food Handbook is written just for sailors and campers who have limited space, water, fuel. Best of all, it's about familiar, affordable supermarket staples, not pricey survival rations.


Each week we present a recipe made entirely from pantry supplies. An ample pantry is boating insurance whether it's a day sail or a transAtlantic.

 Beef ‘n Barley Burgoo
    This recipe is easily cut in half for a small  crew.
2 cans, 12 ounces each, roast beef with gravy
2 beef bouillon cubes
6 cups water
1 cup quick-cooking barley
2 cans, 15 or 16 ounces each, chunky mixed vegetables, drained
2 cans, 15 ounces each, diced tomatoes with celery, onion and pepper
Hot sauce (optional) 



    Put the beef and gravy in a large pot, breaking up the beef. Add the water, bring to a boil and stir in barley. Cover and simmer over low heat 20 minutes or until the barley is puffed and tender. Stir in vegetables, heat through and serve. Pass the hot sauce, pepper mill or a cruet of sherry. Serves 10 to 12.


    When you add a wow-factor condiment to a plain-jane galley meal it’s sure to polish your reputation as a boat cook. Pickled fruit is a dress-up dish to serve alongside meat, fish, omelets, cocktail hour snacks.  Best of all, it stays ready in the cooler to bring out when you need to add color or pizzazz to a meal.

1 cup white balsamic vinegar
2 cups water
½ cup sugar
1 tablespoon pickling salt (or any non-iodized salt)

    Start with fruit that is firm and ripe.  Good choices are melons, whole strawberries, peaches, mangos, pears or apples. Trim fruit, cut in bite size and pack into glass jars or other non-reactive container(s). It should be tight but avoid squashing it. Bring pickling ingredients to a boil, stir to dissolve sugar and cool it to lukewarm. Pour over fruit to cover completely.

        Refrigerate no less than 8 hours. Eat within three or four days. Leftover juice can be used in salad dressing,  or splash a little into a cocktail or iced tea.

Friday, April 2, 2021

Easy Cooking for Sailing, Cruising, Life at Sea

Blog copyright Janet Groene 2021.

For 10 years Janet Groene's only homes were a 29-foot sloop in winter and a 21-foot diesel RV in summer. As a boating writer she has cruised worldwide under sail and power.









Old-Fashioned Oatmeal Cake

Serve delicious, healthful  cake for snacks, breakfast  or dessert.

1 ½ cups boiling water
1 cup quick oatmeal flakes
1 stick butter (1/2 cup), cut up
2/3 to 1 cup white or brown sugar,  or some of each
2 eggs
1 ½ cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Suggested frosting: creamy vanilla covered with shredded coconut

    In a small bowl, combine boiling water and oats. Set aside while you grease a disposable foil  9 X 12-inch baking pan. When it’s still warm, stir in butter to melt it.
    In a mixing bowl, whisk eggs with sugar. Gradually stir in oat mixture. Combine flour, soda, baking powder and cinnamon and mix into wet ingredients. Bake at 350 degrees about 30 minutes or until the cake is springy to the touch and pulls away slightly from edges of the pan. Cool completely, frost or serve with a sifting of powdered sugar, vanilla yogurt, vanilla sauce or fruit sauce.
Stove-top method: Proceed as above and put batter in a greased 12-inch dutch oven or large skillet with lid. I prefer cast aluminum to cast iron for stove-top baking. Bake, covered tightly,  over low-medium heat until cake is firm, springy and pulling away slightly from the sides of the pan. To keep heat low and prevent cake from burning on the bottom, you may need a flame tamer.
Cook’s note: This is a moist cake that should be kept cool.

Why cast aluminum? Over a small burner, it spreads heat across the bottom and up the sides more evenly than cast iron. It forms an even envelope of heat under a heavy cover. Peek as little as possible.

Pantry Recipe of the Week
This recipe, made 100% from stowable ingredients,  needs delicate cooking so use a double boiler, flame tamer, electric burner on Low or the microwave.  With plenty of bread, crackers or tortillas to mop it up it’s a satisfying meal for two or three. Or, serve it as a Happy Hour dip.


Hot Clam Dip
2 tablespoons dried onion flakes
3 tablespoons dried green pepper flakes
1/4 cup sherry or water
2 tablespoons olive oil
8-ounce package process cheese such as Velveeta (see use-by date)
1/4 cup ketchup
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 or 2 10-ounce cans minced clams, drained and checked for bits of shell
Hot sauce to taste (optional) 

    Put the dried vegetables to soak in the sherry or water. Put olive oil in the top of a double boiler, a heavy-bottom saucepan or a microware container and add diced cheese. Cook over boiling water or very low heat, stirring to melt cheese. (In the microwave cook on High, turning and stirring every 30 seconds until cheese is melted.)  Stir in softened vegetables, ketchup, Worcestershire and clams.  Add hot sauce to taste.  Serve warm as a dip. 


May Misfire is a Yacht Yenta mystery
If you like a cozy read on your e-reader in your bunk tonight, order one of the Yacht Yenta mysteries. Now there are five of these frothy cozies featuring widow Farley Halladay and her Haitian sheriff friend, elderly SEAL veteran Cap Kowalski, her wacko sister,  fitness guru Cholly Baines and her dog, Scuppers. As a former charter hostess herself and now an online charterboat booking agent, she takes readers on worldwide adventures.

In May Misfire, Farley returns to the ketch where her husband was killed. May


  Cold Meal of the Week
    With summer coming, cold meals are on the boating menu. Make ahead, keep chilled, bring out underway or at anchor. Lemon adds a tangy sweetness to this summer cooler.

Jellied Corned Beef Salad
    In the southern U.S., where gelatin salads are a summer staple, these are called congealed salads.  

Make it in individual molds if you like

12-ounce can corned beef
8-serving package lemon gelatin dessert
1 2/3 cups boiling water
1 cup mayonnaise
3 or 4  hard-cooked eggs, diced
Half a bunch of celery, trimmed and finely diced

    Dissolve gelatin in hot water in a one-quart container. Whisk in mayonnaise until smooth.  Scrape excess fat off corned beef and stir into gelatin mixture, breaking it up with a fork. Stir in eggs and celery. Cover tightly chill several hours or overnight. Cut in squares and serve as is or on a bed of lettuce.Serves 6 to 8.


Friday, March 19, 2021

Go Boating and Sailing with Easy Recipes

Blog copyright Janet Groene, all rights reserved. To donate $5 a year as a voluntary subscription use your PayPal account to janetgroene at


    This easy, one-dish meal cooks over one burner and serves up smartly when garnished with snipped cilantro. 

Tex-Mex Mac

Bulk it up! Add the creamy goodness of canned mac 'n cheese

3 cups water *
1 1/2 cups long grain rice
2 cans, 15 ounces each, macaroni and cheese
28-ounce can diced tomatoes
1 teaspoon each chili powder, cumin, oregano
2 cans, 10 to 12 ounces each, chunk chicken
10-ounce can corn with bits of green and red pepper, drained
Small can diced chilies, drained
Minced cilantro

*Use water or broth and add liquid drained from tomatoes and canned chicken

    Bring water to a boil in a large, deep pot and add rice. Cover, reduce heat and simmer until rice is tender. Stir in macaroni and cheese, diced tomatoes, herbs, chicken, corn and chilies. Cover and heat gently over low burner. Season to taste.  Sprinkle with snipped cilantro if you have some. Serves 8.  Pass the pepper mill and/or hot sauce.

    These weekly recipes are made 100% with stowed foods. Gourmet, no. Life sustaining, yes.  Emergencies happen. A smartly-stocked pantry is insurance. 


   Survival Food Handbook tells how to provision with familiar, affordable supermarket staples you’ll use every day. Chapters deal with choosing, stowing and using staples and with many types of fuel, cooking, water and food emergencies in your boat or camper.






 Barley Casserole
 If this is to be a vegetarian main dish, you may want to use more nuts.


 4 cups water
4 bouillon cubes (chicken, vegetable, beef)
2 cups pearl barley
1 to 2 cans sliced mushrooms, drained
½ teaspoon each onion powder and dried thyme
8-ounce can diced water chestnuts, drained
1 cup (or more to taste)  nuts such as sliced almonds, cashew halves, broken walnuts

Add ad lib: canned condensed vegetable soup, canned mixed vegetables, canned chunk chicken or ham
Garnish suggestions: Nuts, grated cheese, croutons , parsley flakes, crushed potato chips


Bring water to a boil and dissolve bouillon. Add barley, cover, reduce heat and cook until barley is tender. Stir in other ingredients, saving nuts for a topping. Heat gently, adjust seasonings and serve. 

Tips for the Boat Cook

    * Buy a pound of pizza dough and make meals for  2 people, 3 days. Divide dough in 3. Wrap.  Keep cold. On Day 1 make pizza, Day 2 cinnamon rolls, Day 3 meat-filled patties or empanadas.
    * Stuff old socks with kitty litter and put in deck shoes and wellies to absorb odor. Also good to soak up stinks in a refrigerator or ice chest. Clean thoroughly, dry, then add some of these odor absorbers and leave overnight with the door closed. 

    * To make an easy dessert,  “butter” the inside of  hot dog buns with Nutella.  Lay in half a banana cut in half lengthwise. Stuff with miniature marshmallows, chocolate chips, nuts.. Wrap tightly in foil and heat.

    * Whisks are work savers in camping, especially if you don’t have an electric mixer. I like a good, strong balloon whisk for batters and beating eggs


Kindle a cozy in your bunk tonight with Farley Halladay, the Yacht Yenta. Laugh, cry, cook, cope with this widowed sailor and her crime solving. Available for all e-book formats including Kindle and Nook.




Sunset Skillet Supper

    The bacon and ham may provide all the salt needed. Add salt only to taste.

2 slices bacon, cut up
16-ounce package shredded cabbage for slaw
Small package matchstick carrots
1 Granny Smith apple, cored and cut up
2 large redskin potatoes, scrubbed and diced
16-ounce canned ham, diced
½ cup dry white wine
2 teaspoons caraway seeds
Freshly ground pepper to taste


    In a large skillet fry out the bacon until it’s crisp, gradually stirring in  apple and vegetables. Stir in ham, wine and caraway seeds.  Cover and cook over low heat until vegetables are tender. Spoon onto six plates and pass the pepper mill.


Friday, February 26, 2021

Meals for Sailing, Cruising with a Small Galley

Blog copyright 2021 Janet Groene.  To donate $5 a year as a voluntary subscription to these weekly posts use your PayPal account to janet groene at




    This exotic dish originated in India and spread to the entire British colonial world.  It’s often served for breakfast but it also makes a substantial supper, served hot or cold.  Smoked salmon in vacuum packs keeps well in the ice chest. You might also use tinned salmon and a drop of bottled smoke.  

 1/4 cup canola oil
1 tablespoon curry powder
Large onion, diced
4 cups water
2 fish- or chicken-flavored bouillon cubes
2 cups long-grain white rice
4 hard-cooked eggs, diced
6- to 10-ounce package smoked salmon, cut in bite size
1 cup frozen peas, thawed
Mango chutney

Stir curry powder into hot oil with the onion until onion is coated and curry is fragrant. Add rice to coat. Add water and bouillon. Bring to a boil, cover, reduce heat and cook until rice is tender. Stir in eggs, salmon and peas and heat through. Serve chutney on the side.  Serves 8.
Tips for the Galley Cook

* Keep a grapefruit spoon((s) in the galley to scoop seeds out of melons and cukes and to eat kiwi and avocado right out of the shell.

* To make “evaporated milk” stir 2/3 cup dry milk powder into one cup water. Let stand two to three hours and stir again. It takes that long for the milk to hydrate fully.



*Live your cruising dream vicariously with the Yacht Yenta e-book mysteries. Here's Book #3 in the series. March Malice,

* Make shortcut stuffed cabbage by rolling hot dogs or bratwursts  in parboiled cabbage leaves. Add seasoned tomato sauce. Cook thoroughly.  

* Instead of bread crumbs, sprinkle buttered noodles with caraway seeds or poppy seeds. Toss and serve.

Chipped Beef Chowder

    Beware of salt overload in this recipe. Provision with no- and low-sodium canned and packaged foods whenever possible. You can always add salt to taste at the table.

3-ounce jar of dried, chipped beef
32-ounce carton low-sodium beef, vegetable or chicken broth
2 cans, 15 ounces each, low sodium diced potatoes
1 teaspoon onion powder (optional)
15-ounce can cream style corn
12-ounce can evaporated milk
Pepper or hot sauce to taste


    Rinse  beef to remove excess salt. Cut or tear beef into pieces. Drain and rinse potatoes. In a saucepan mix beef, broth, potatoes, onion powder and corn. Bring to a boil, cover, and let simmer over low heat for flavors to blend. Bring back to a boil, turn off heat, and stir in milk. Ladle into soup bowls.  Pass the pepper mill or hot sauce. 




Solve the provisioning puzzle with Survival Food Handbook, a guide to choosing, stowing and using ordinary supermarket foods for cruising and emergencies. Written for sailors and campers, the book is also a guide for preppers on a budget. Tips on all food emergencies such as flooded bilge, water shortage, alternative stoves, fridge failure. Kindle or paperback,



SOS Sausage Supper

    No time to cook? Rough seas? Short-handed?   Been there.


1 or 2 packages 8 ounces each, fully cooked sausage links or patties, thawed
20-ounce can of sweet potatoes in their own juice
1 can apple pie filling

    Cut up sausage patties. Drain sweet potatoes. Lightly fold sausage, sweet potatoes and apple pie filling together and heat through.  Serves 4.


Friday, February 19, 2021

Meals to Cook on a Small Boat

Blog copyright Janet  Groene 2021.  



    Bake this crustless quiche in a heavy skillet atop the stove or in the oven, solar oven, a Dutch oven over the beach fire or in a  slow cooker.
No-Crust Quiche
Butter, shortening  or nonstick spray
3 cups drained cooked or canned vegetables*
Small onion, finely chopped
2 tablespoons real bacon bits
6 eggs
2 tablespoons flour
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
12-ounce can evaporated milk
1 cup grated Parmesan cheese from a jar

     Generously spray or greased the cooker and scatter the well-drained vegetables. Sprinkle with bacon bits. In a bowl whisk eggs, flour and nutmeg. Add enough water to the milk to make two cups liquid. Whisk liquid into the eggs with the cheese and pour over the vegetables. Cover tightly and cook over low flame or in a 350 degree oven until quiche is  “set” as for custard. In a slow cooker, cook 90 minutes on High.


    No fresh foods? No problem with these recipes made 100% from shelf-stable foods. More? Read Survival Food Handbook, a guide to choosing, stowing and using shelf-stable foods from the supermarket. Kindle or paperback,


Peanut Butter Batter Bread
    Chunks of this hearty bread will see you through night watch. It’s also good with a light supper of soup or a salad. Butter it with peanut butter, butter, cream cheese or jam,  or drizzle it with honey.

2 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/3 cup sugar
½ teaspoon cinnamon
3/4 cup peanut butter
1/4 cup canola oil
1 cup milk
2 eggs or equivalent


     Dump dry ingredients into a bag to mix them. Set aside. In a bowl whisk peanut butter, oil, milk and eggs until smooth. Mix in dry ingredients until evenly moistened. Do not over-beat. Spread batter in a greased pan. Bake at 350 degrees 75-90 minutes or until loaf is firm and a toothpick plunged in the middle comes out clean.     
    Cool 5 minutes, then turn out of the pan and cool on a rack. The loaf will be tender, so break it in chunks to serve at once or wrap it overnight for easier slicing.
Cook’s note: This is a good choice to make and freeze ahead.

Brie with Caramel Pecan Topping
    It sounds  fussy, yet baked Brie with a sweet topping is a snap in your toaster oven. This serves 6 to 10 as an appetizer.  


8- to 10-ounce wheel of Brie
½ cup chopped pecans
½ cup cherry jam
1 tablespoon white or brown sugar
About 1 cup caramel or butterscotch ice cream topping
2 to 3 apples, cored and sliced in wedges
2 tablespoons lemon juice
Melba toast, crackers, toasted French bread, etc.

    Set the toaster oven for 350 degrees and place the Brie on a piece of nonstick foil on a baking pan. Mix jam, sugar and pecans and spread over the top of the Brie. Bake about 15 minutes or until the topping bubbles. In a small bowl, toss apple slices with lemon juice. Drain and arrange on a tray or large plate with the bread and Brie. Serve Brie in wedges with bread, apple slices and the caramel syrup for dipping the apples.

Ravioli Primavera

    If you do the slicing ahead of time, this throws together quickly in a large skillet or wok. Amounts and types of vegetables are flexible.

16 ounces refrigerated or frozen mushroom ravioli
½ stick butter
1 teaspoon minced garlic
Medium red sweet pepper, seeded and sliced
Medium red onion, cut in crescents
1 cup sliced fresh or canned mushrooms
2 cups trimmed, sliced asparagus
Medium zucchini, sliced
Medium yellow squash, sliced
Small can whole kernel corn
1 teaspoon each dried parsley, tarragon and crumbled thyme
1 cup halved grape tomatoes
 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
Optional: white balsamic vinegar
Salt,  pepper to taste

    Thaw ravioli if frozen. Set aside. Melt butter and begin stir-frying fresh vegetables until everything is nicely browned. Drain corn and add water  to the juice to make ½ cup liquid. Spread ravioli over the vegetables,drizzle with liquid and sprinkle with herbs. Cover and cook over reduced heat 5-6 minutes until ravioli is thoroughly steamed. Fold in tomatoes and heat gently. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.  If desired shake a few drops of balsamic vinegar over the top. Stir gently  and serve. Serves 6. Pass the cheese shaker.