Sunday 17 May 2015

Bad Cooking On Boats

photo from another delivery crossing the bass straight
I entered a contest at the Royal Hong Kong Yacht club last year for a James Martin Slow Cooking Cookbook. I won the book but never got around to posting the story on my blog. So here it is. 

I have cooked a lot on boats, I worked for a while in the Whitsundays as a deck hand and a cook and I have done ton of deliveries around Australia. Most of the boats I worked on had very simple galley, which were made up of only a microwave, a kettle and maybe a toasted sandwich maker.  I can now cook almost anything in a microwave, one my specialties is pesto scrambled eggs, with bacon on toast. The most important thing that I have learned is that preparation is key, if you can cut up everything for your voyage before, do it! Because it sucks chopping food on a 45 degree angel!
One of the funniest experiences I have had involving cooking while sailing, is not actually about my cooking but an experience I had while doing a delivery from the Whitsunday's to Sydney on board Aftershock a Davidson 59. I was on my watch and went downstairs to check if the other girl needed help getting the food ready.  When I got to the galley, which was made up of a microwave, I looked on the counter to find a bowl of uncooked pasta in some cold water.  My question: “What are you doing?” Answer: “I am soaking the pasta so it will cook faster in the microwave!”  Personally I know this could never work, but I guess she figured if it works for rice it must work for pasta! The pasta had already been soaking for a while so it had a kinda congealed gloopy look to it, I don’t think there was much food left on the boat so I just went up on deck and let her finish cooking.

What arrived on deck 15 minutes later was not good, the meal as she put it was pasta with Carbonara sauce (congealed pasta, milk, cheese and some chopped ham). I was hungry so I had few bites the pasta, the inside was still crunchy and there was a slurry of mushy floury pasta in the sauce. Usually I am pretty hungry when sailing and will eat almost anything, but after a few bites it was fish food...

One year ago on chopcookdine
Hongkongese Roasted Pork Tacos  燒肉

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