Its difficult to find any 'tips' or 'treasures' for any ships galley without buying various volumes that seem to clutter the galley cupboards. Below is a taste of what can be found in the 'Menu' above.
If you are not 'the Chef', trying to stock or even plan a galley with useful and appropriate utensils will be a challenge. We have simplified this in easy to read 'bite-size-pieces' to make any Chef a happy chappie (or chappet).
Using the old knives tossed out after you got married or plastic plates from the last camping trip, does little to create flair and drive considering we want to spend as little time in the galley as possible. This is the first HUGE 'no, no'. Having spent hard earnt cash on your yachting investment, to then be spoilt by cheap/old looking items psychologically dampens your flair and those you are feeding. And how 'mud sticks' with family and visitors alike, so spending a few dollars on this bling is worth a million in the end.
It is amazing how quickly nice dishes can be put together and how diverse and tasteful cooking can be with a little forethought. If cooking is not your forte, then trying to bluff your way through will fail you nine times out of ten. Friends will be too polite to critique you honestly.
A simple well cooked meal, will get far more 'brownie points' than a complex untried recipe with incorrect ingredients. Even with simple meals, there are a few basic rules (and Chef secrets) that will make a good meal, brilliant without all the fancy la-di-da stuff. Anyone can be a Cook, but only a few are Chefs, there is a huge difference and its here that we want to share our thoughts.
While fresh is always best, many fresh foods will only last a week or so unrefrigerated.
There are some must have dried galley ingredients (nuts, pastas etc) and galley condiments (garlic, mixed herbs, even salt etc) that should always be on-board, improving food nutrition, tenderness and most importantly taste.
Cryovaccing and sealing foods
Leaving foods (especially fresh or dried types) unsealed is the next big no no. These can and must be sealed from the humid environment, with many small sachets being preferable over one large sachet. This can be quickly, easily and cheaply achieved at home using a vacuum sealing machine. We use this machine extensively and love it, worth every cent.
Cryovac foods too are key in this preparation area too. We go into great detail on this as it is one of our favourite ways to semi-preserve meats for longer journeys. Its cheap, often free at butchers and certainly helps when freezer space is limited.
Hot Pot Meals
Clean-up after cooking is also one of those hated chores and planning a meal with limited clean-up space can be very difficult if you want it to be.
'Hot Pots' and BBQ's are the key and the reason for our concentration in that area. Dishes can be prepared beforehand and left to cook with minimal effort. Most of these dishes are utilise the cheaper cuts of all meat types and minimise cleaning. They are also often made to 'use-up' vegetables that are starting to age and would normally be tossed out a few days later. Once cooked, left-overs can then be stored for a few days.
We often prepare dry ingredients at home (including fresh cut vegetables), seal in one vacuum bag and just add contents plus meat/chicken/fish to a pot. Toss in some more 'Chef tricks' and the result is scrumptious.
Really simple, super fast to prepare and a huge time saver.
Galley must haves:
1/. Rolls of Aluminium foil (light weight and just throw away when finished - no cleaning),
2/. A non-stick BBQ cooking sheet (an ABSOLUTE MUST, they don't melt and easy clean),
3/. Pots with handles and lids that don't melt or buckle under heat (most MUST fit in the BBQ),
4/. Plates and cups with large bases and high rims, and a
5/. BBQ with a lid.
Galley fridges and freezers
Freezers too are always an issue and apart from depleting your meagre power supplies, you always run out of freezer space, so we have listed information on possible alternatives. We have modified our WAECO CR110 upright fridge/freezer to be more energy efficienet (less than 6-Amps) and discuss this in our maintenance area of this website.
Is meat with no freezer possible?
Yes it definitely is, refer above to our menu 'Fish and Meats' to help tackle your next trip without a freezer.
Being a qualified Chef allows some informed knowledge in food preparation.
We have tried to simplify the process to the bare minimum while maintaining taste and nutrition. Working alongside Dietitians for four years also provides some useful insight into the nutritional area of some foods we discuss.