The Seattle Boat Show is approaching and that means I get to visit Pike Place Market on my early morning run. After beginning my run down south on 1st St my arrival at the market is the news agent on the corner of south arcade. It pops with color and a dizzying array of magazines that adorn the long stands. The morning paper is a must along with a peak at the international newspaper headlines. There’s a little warmth in the arcade made even warmer with the wafting smell of fresh baked donuts intermixed with a hint of something mysterious yet familiar. As I wander down the arcade I recognize the mystery scent as curry from Saffron Spice. Oh, a Chai tea would be a treat but they are not open. Daily Dozen Donuts are and they are in full production but it’s a little too early for donuts.
Further down the arcade there’s a bit of orderly shouting and as I reach the end I collide with a gathering of people. I’ve now standing in the Pike Place Fish Co and they’ve been selling fish since 6:30am. I’m looking rather like a stunned mullet under the glare of their display lights when a chap in gumboots, cap and long white apron approaches. “Morning, I’m Ryan. Would you like to try some alderwood smoked salmon? Well that’s hard to resist and as I bring the morsel to my lips there’s a shout and unison chant from the other fish mongers and the next minute a large salmon from the ice display is hurtling through the air. It’s swiftly caught, between the head and tail fin, by the counterman who promptly wraps it in a sheet of paper. Not quiet what I’m in the market for, I’ll be happy with a some smoked salmon thanks.
Simply The Best, across from the Fish Co, are not to be overlooked. Their dried fruits can become addictive and choosing their variety of apple chips is made fun with tasty samples. As I turn to stroll north I find myself at the heart of the market directly beneath the famous neon clock and beside Rachel the Market’s life-sized bronze piggy bank. Since 1980 she’s been “bring home the bacon, raising over $200,000 to date. I make my donation and pat her nose for the rumored good luck. At 25 years old Rachel is a rather new comer to the Market which started in 1907 when councilman Thomas Revelle proposed that farmers by pass the middle man and connect directly to the consumers by bringing there wagons to town. On opening day eight farmers were overwhelmed by thousands eager shoppers and at the end of the year the first Market building opened. Today the Market covers 9 acres featuring over 500 venders and 200 street performers.
The arcade stretches for seemingly ever. I’m now conscious of time, I’m truly supposed to be out running but the displays and samples are so tempting. Oooh, fresh berries, flavored pastas, chocolate covered cherries, delicate clams, exotic fruits, earthy vegetables and flowering bouquets. I step out onto Pike Place determined to be on my run home but look, there’s the original Starbucks although it pale’s to the queue that’s snaking out of the inviting French bakery Le Panier. With little time for queuing I jogged on only to halt in my tracks at Beecher’s window mesmerized by the milk truck pumping milk into the open whirring vat. Need I mention their homemade cheeses are heavenly. O.K, I’ll succumb to a treat; a hot berry scone from Cinnamon Works, now I really must run!
2 dozen small clams in the shell - washed
1 cup dry sherry
½ cup chopped green onions
2 teaspoons chopped garlic
2 teaspoons fresh ginger
Place all ingredients except clams in a large sauce pan, simmer 3 minutes. Add clams cover and simmer until clams open. Remove clams to a large bowl. Simmer remaining liquid until it is reduced to ¾ cup. Pour liquid over clams and serve. Serves 4.
½ cup sliced strawberries
2 tablespoons champagne vinegar - or your favorite
1 tablespoon sugar
a pinch of salt
4 cups lettuce leaves - torn into bite-size pieces
1 cup strawberries - sliced
½ cup goat cheese - crumbled
½ cup dried mango - chopped
½ cup pecans - toasted
To make strawberry vinaigrette puree first 4 ingredients in a blender until smooth. In medium bowl toss together lettuce and strawberry vinaigrette. Pile 1 cup of the dressed lettuce on four salad plate top with remaining ingredients. Serves 4.
Salmon with Balsamic Glaze
4 salmon steaks - at room temp.
2 tablespoons olive oil
salt and pepper
¾ cup balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons maple syrup
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1 clove garlic - chopped
Heat griddle to 375°F. Baste with oil. In a smaller pan heat vinegar, syrup, mustard and garlic. Bring to a boil and simmer for 12 minutes. Sprinkle salmon with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Grill salmon for about 4-5 minutes on each side. Let rest 10 minutes. Plate salmon and drizzle with glaze.
Coconut Shrimp Pasta
1 lb short pasta preferably Papparsdelle’s Calypso Blend pasta - lime, Mango-peach and red chili flavored
2 fresh jalapeños - thinly sliced
2 clove garlic - minced
1 inch ginger - grated
2 tablespoons dark brown sugar
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 lime - zest and juice
1 cup light coconut milk
½ cup fresh basil - chopped
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon salt
1 lb shrimp
2 mangoes - peeled and diced
In a large bowl combine all ingredients except pasta, lime juice and mangoes. Leave to marinate for up to 4 hours, refrigerated. Remove shrimp from marinade and cook in a hot sauté pan until done, 5 minutes. Transfer shrimp to a plate. Add reserved marinade and simmer until thickened, about 5 minutes. Meanwhile cook pasta until al dente. Drain and rinse with cool water. Place in serving bowl, mix in a teaspoon of olive oil. Stir in coconut marinade and shrimp. Serve in pasta bowls garnished with mango and a drizzle of lime juice.
2 cups fresh raspberries (frozen will also work but you may need to extend cooking time)
pinch of sea salt
½ cup sugar
¾ cup milk
2/3 cup whole wheat pastry flour
1 teaspoon vanilla
½ teaspoon almond extract - optional
butter and granulated sugar for preparing pan
Preheat the oven to 350°. Prepare 10-inch oven dish by greasing with butter and sprinkling with granulated sugar, shaking the pan to coat the sides. Scatter pan with berries. In a medium bowl beat eggs, salt and sugar together until smooth. Stir in milk, flour, and extracts. Pour batter over berries. Bake 50 minutes or until set in the center, then remove from the oven and cool before slicing and serving. Dust with powdered sugar and serve warm with whipped cream or ice cream. Serves 4-6.
Our planned departure in French Polynesia from Maupiti to visit Hina on Mopelia, 100 miles to the WSW, was delayed due to light headwinds. To utilize the calm conditions I choose to teach sail repair and was in the midst of class when we heard a boat approaching. Popping up on deck we sighted Hina’s father, a Tahitian chap and a young women all perched on a boatload of bundles and boxes obviously destined for Mopelia.
As we were pondering where we could stash the huge pile of supplies the Tahitian chap looked Mahina Tiare’s name and in a questioning voice said “John?” Incredibly, Marcello had remembered a visit John had made to Mopelia 23 years earlier and written about in Mahina Tiare, Pacific Passages. Back then Marcello and his wife Adrienne were newlyweds, had no children (four would follow, the youngest was in the boat) and were living an idyllic life in an amazing thatch stilt house perched over the lagoon.
Marcello quickly bought us up to date. A cyclone had swept across the 6' high island washing their house and most of the coconut palms into the lagoon. They’d saved their babies by placing them in an old freezer which thankfully floated as successive waves roared over the island. Currently Adrienne and Fiamona, their daughter, were on Mopelia helping their son Hio establish a pearl shell farm and build a house.
Ideal conditions prevailed for our sail to Mopelia although on entering the lagoon it was hard to pinpoint Hio’s settlement amongst the thick coconut trees. I gave a blast on the fog horn and within minutes a few people ran down the beach, launched a boat and came to greet us. Adrienne was thrilled with our visit and John was equally pleased to note she was still full of life and humor. Hio was keen to show us the intricate house he was constructing for which Adrienne and Fiamona were weaving coconut leaves for the thatching.
Upon offering us coconuts Hio promptly shimmed up and down palms tossing down choice nuts. Adrienne deftly peeled away the husks on a large stake driven into the ground, before hacking openings in the nuts with a large machete. The immature green coconut water was delicious refreshing and the marshmallow flesh was eagerly scooped out with a spoon fashioned from the outer coconut and slurped down. If you live on Mopelia you best become skillful at harvesting coconuts as copra (dried coconut meat) provides the only cash income.
We were then put to work grating nuts. Adrienne made the task of sitting upon the grater base and grating the meat, on the rounded rasp between her knees, into a bowl fashioned from half an old mooring ball, held by her feet, look easy. We certainly blundered a few nuts by not mastering the method of nut rotation and ended up with a multitude of dark husk in our coconut. Creating coconut milk was a breeze; just warp up the grated coconut in a clean cloth then wring out the milk. Meanwhile Hio started the wood cooking fire while Fiamona waded into the lagoon to the lobster pen returning with an armload of bounty for an impromptu feast.
Our remaining time of Mopelia was certainly festive. Dinner parties and adventures were arranged and enjoyed equally by those ashore and the few other visiting yachts of several nationalities. Food and drink was plentiful thanks to the abundance of coconuts and all its variations, which inspired the following recipes, although if you wished for something strong to drink Hio was always eager to offer a glass of his fiery home-brewed coconut toddy.
The coconut-lobster gang - Fiamona, Adrienne, Amanda, Jim, Bobby, Hio, Gilles, John, Christine, and Julian with Kat, Gordon and Spencer in the front row
Lobster Cakes with Avocado Wasabi Dressing
5 ounces lump lobster or crab meat
1 small shallot - chopped
1 garlic clove - minced
½ tablespoon grated fresh ginger
1 teaspoon honey
1 egg white - beaten
3 tablespoons coconut milk
½ lime - juice and zest
¼ cup panko
2 tablespoons fresh cilantro - chopped
pinches of salt and pepper
¼ teaspoon chili - to taste
Gently mix together all ingredients. Form into patties and coat with extra panko. Bake 15 minutes in hot oven or pan fry until golden.
Avocado Wasabi Dressing
¼ cup tofu
juice of 1 lime
1 tablespoon minced onion
½ teaspoon wasabi paste
½ teaspoon minced garlic
pinches of salt and pepper
In a food processor, blend all ingredients together. Chill before serving.
Coconut Curry Granola
3 cups large flake oats
½ cup almonds - chopped
½ cup sunflower seeds
½ cup unsweetened large coconut flakes
⅓ cup hemp seeds
3 tablespoons sesame seeds
1 teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon cayenne
1 egg white
2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
2 tablespoons green curry paste
⅓ cup coconut oil - melts
Preheat oven to 300°F. In a large bowl combine first 8 ingredients. Whisk toghter egg white and Worcestershire sauce, add to oats. Combine coconut oil and curry paste, add quickly to oats before coconut oil stiffens. Spread onto a rimmed baking sheet. Bake 30 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes.
Coconut and Lime Chicken
2 lbs boneless, skinless chicken breasts
3 tablespoons oil
zest of 1 lime
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1½ teaspoons ground coriander
2 tablespoon soy sauce
1½ teaspoons kosher salt
2 tablespoon sugar
2 teaspoons curry powder
½ cup coconut milk
1 small fresh hot chili
¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro
fresh limes - cut into wedges
Slice chicken breasts open like a book and pound out into an even thickness. Combine remaining ingredients, except cilantro and limes. Place chicken and marinade in a large bowl, chill 2 hours. Remove chicken and bring marinade to a boil for 2 minutes, grill chicken until done. Serve chicken sprinkled with cilantro, sauce on the side, limes, brown rice, and green salad.
Nutty Coconut Rice
3 cups cooked brown basmati rice
3 cloves garlic - chopped
2 tablespoons coconut oil
½ cup chopped pecans
½ cup golden raisins
a few pinches of cinnamon, pepper and curry powder
½ cup toasted unsweetened coconut flakes
salt to taste
In a large pan sauté garlic in coconut oil. Add spices and pecans, cook 3 minutes. Stir in raisins and rice and cook until heated through. Stir in toasted coconut. Serves 6.
No Bake Coconut Almond Bars
1 ⅓ cups pitted Medjool dates
1 cup raw almonds
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
¼ cup coconut
⅛ teaspoon salt
Combine all ingredients in a food processor and puree until combined and sticking together. Press mixture onto a cutting board and form into a square. Cut into bars. Chill until eaten.
Easter at Roche Harbor Resort is a special time as you get to truly believe that spring has arrived. It all starts with a hive of activity at the marina on Friday as yachts arrive from many locations mainly in three groups; the Beaver Cruise Club, Point Roberts Yacht Club and the Royal Victoria Yacht Club who celebrate their Easter Cruise arrival with an appetizer and wine welcome.
The Resort always plans a busy Easter weekend with an open invitation for all to join in the fun. On Saturday at 1:00pm Easter Bunny leaves 3,850 eggs boiled eggs on the Marina Party Barge for dying. Last year I got to visit with a very busy little boy, Davis Kill-Shul. The egg dying activity fascinated two-year-old Davis and with the help of Grandpa Ed they were having a grand time filling multiple trays with colored eggs. Hailing from Point Roberts they were visiting aboard Ed’s 32’ Bayliner.
Julie’s Egg Dying Recipe
Julie, a summertime liveaboard sailor, is Roche Harbor’s long time event coordinating and supporting “Happy Helper” and this is her ole time family recipe.
1 cup warm water
3 tablespoons vinegar
15 to 30 drops food coloring to achieve the desired color hue
Combine all ingredients in a cup for each colorant. The vinegar is easily ingested and acts as a mordant, allowing the egg shells to accept and hold the dye.
The Party Tent hosts an evening potluck for the Royal Vic cruisers or perhaps it’s an early night for the little ones in anticipation of tomorrow’s big day. Now it’s Sunday and time to dress in ones finest spring party frock or outfit for 10:30 Easter Mass at Our Lady of Good Voyage Chapel. At 12:30 a large colorful crowd gathers outside the resort’s centerpiece Hotel De Haro. Built in 1886 by Tacoma lawyer John McMillin the hotel was the center of a company town grown up around the mining of lime deposits from the surrounding stone. But today the main attraction is the welcoming of Easter Bunny for he wants to wish every a Happy Easter. To help him out Miss Carrot offers mini foiled chocolate eggs from her colorful basket while Chef Todd offers sophisticated deviled eggs served from a silver platter.
The excitement climaxes at 1:00 pm as the Easter egg hunt begins. Those up to 3-years-old toddle behind the white picket fences in the graciously laid out rose garden originally planted at the turn of the 20th century by McMillin’s wife Louella. Adjacent to the rose garden the clean lines of old hedging and cobbled walkways contain the profusion of plantings known as the formal garden and its here that the 4 to 6-year-olds torment the plants in their hunt. Meanwhile those aged 7 to 11-years actively search in the pavilion courtyard. All are hopeful to find the coveted gold and silver eggs.
Prizes are awarded to those who find the metallic eggs but everyone is a winner for baskets are now ever so laden with colored boiled eggs. Perhaps the following recipes will be of help if you’re at a loss as to what to do with all those eggs.
Wasabi Deviled Eggs
4 large eggs
½ teaspoon rice vinegar
½ teaspoon wasabi paste
½ teaspoon kosher salt
1 tablespoon chopped scallions
Scoop out yolks and mash until creamy. Mix in remaining ingredients and place into piping bag or zip lock bag with slit cut in a corner. Pipe mixture into egg whites.
Egg, Radish and Cucumber Salad
3 boiled eggs - chopped
2 cups radishes - thinly sliced
½ long English cucumber - seeded & diced
2 scallions - chopped
½ cup Greek yogurt
¼ teaspoon salt
Combine all ingredients.
Scallops with Asparagus, Bacon and Eggs
1lb sea scallops
4 slices thick-cut bacon
5 tablespoons flour
½ tablespoon butter
4 hard-boiled eggs - chopped
1 tablespoon lemon juice
salt and pepper
Toss scallops in flour, sprinkle with salt and pepper. In a large cast iron skillet over medium heat cook bacon until crisp. Transfer to plate, leaving fat in the pan. Add asparagus and sauté on high until done. Remove asparagus, dot with butter and sprinkle with lemon juice. Cover with foil to keep warm. Lower pan heat to medium, sauté scallops until browned and opaque, about 6 minutes. Sprinkle with lemon juice. Serve scallops and asparagus garnished with crumbled bacon and eggs.
Eggs with Curried Chickpeas
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 onion - diced
3 teaspoons curry powder
1 14 oz can chickpeas - drained
a few handfuls of spinach
4 hard-boiled eggs - halved
½ bunch parsley - chopped
In a large cast iron skillet over medium heat sauté onion in olive oil until soft, about 5 minutes. Add curry then chickpeas and cook until chickpeas are warmed through. Add spinach and sauté 3 minutes. Arrange eggs with yolks up and gently heat until eggs are warmed through. Serve garnished with parsley. Serves 2.
6 hard-boiled eggs - peeled
1 cup chopped parsley
1 head garlic - minced
4 tablespoons tomato paste
2 cups olive oil
Place the eggs in a bowl. Beat together remaining ingredients and pour over the eggs. Cover and refrigerate overnight. Serve with crusty bread. Serves 6.
Asian Egg Salad
2 tablespoon soy sauce
1 thumb ginger - julienned
1 teaspoon sugar
½ teaspoon sesame oil
1 tablespoon water
4 green onions - sliced
½ red bell pepper - sliced
1 tablespoon peanut oil
6 hard-boiled eggs - halved
1 Serrano pepper - diced
salt and pepper
In a small bowl, whisk together first seven ingredients. In a small sauté pan heat peanut oil over medium heat. Add sauce and sauté 1 minute. Arrange eggs on serving plate, spoon over sauce, top with Serrano pepper and fresh ground black pepper.
Norwegian Sugar Cookies
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter
1 cup sugar
2 large hard-boiled egg yolks - mashed
2 large eggs - separated
1 teaspoon almond extract
2½ cups flour
1 cup pecan halves
Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Cream together butter and sugar, add mashed egg yolks, raw egg yolks, and almond extract. Stir in flour. Divide dough into quarters. On a lightly floured surface, roll out each dough quarter into a 9-inch circle about 1/8-inch thick. Cut cookies with a 2 ½-inch round cookie cutter and transfer them to ungreased cookie sheets. Reroll dough scraps for additional cookies. Top cookies with a pecan half. Lightly beat egg whites and brush over cookies. Bake until lightly browned, about 12 minutes. Cool on wire racks.
Surreal; a small word that does little justice to the Valhalla I’ve entered upon being guided to our dinning table inside the “Moulin Rouge” spiegeltent of Teatro ZinZanni by a perky Viking wench. I instantly feel a connection to Alice in Wonderland or perhaps Dorothy in Oz for I’m now far, far removed for a dark, wet and chilly Seattle evening. A warm red glow baths the 1910 high pitched circular tent that resembles an illuminated vintage kaleidoscope with its bounty of colored glass and glinting mirrors although amongst the imagery hairy masked creatures lurk lusting after Freya’s golden apples.
An announcement declares we’re here by invitation from the Nordic gods of Wotan and Thor along with the goddesses Freya and Frika, and least not forget their eclectic gang, to help celebrate the end of the world with an exquisite adventure. We daren’t refuse their generosity for John and I have recently decided to return to the land of the Vikings with our sailing expeditions and we best be on the good side of Wotan; chief to the gods and keeper of covenants and promises.
Our scrumptious feasting and partying extend far beyond dazzling cabarets transcending into astounding cirque performances that need to be seen only to be believed for they held us spellbound. Thankfully I’d gleaned a peak at scenes such as In the Bathtub, Red Bottoms, Wotan Rap and Vertical Tango for I’d had the opportunity to chat with Teatro ZinZanni’s executive chef Erik Carlson.
Amanda with Teatro ZinZanni’s executive chef Erik Carlson.
Dressed in flaming pirate pants, emblem embroidered black chef’s jacket topped with a bowler hat Erick defies your average chef perception but as captain of the Teatro ZinZanni’s dinning experience he is responsible for the evening’s 300 dinners. With the goal to bring the food into the light of every Teatro ZinZanni show themed menus that reflect on the story are created. Speakers broadcast the performance into the kitchen and on cue meals are delivered to the guests. Hard cider and crafted ales braised the pork belly and beef short ribs that graced our Ragnarock feast and in the dessert finale the hammer of Thor accompanied Freya’s golden apples.
If you’re requiring an accompaniment for your next performance take the stage with one of the following recipes courtesy of Erik.
Mushroom and Grilled Nopales Soup
Here’s a zesty soup to warm you up. Ask your grocer for cactus paddle, otherwise check with your nearest Mexican market.
2 teaspoons olive oil
2 tablespoons diced onion
1 clove crushed garlic
1 teaspoon each of fresh minced thyme, sage and oregano
¾ lb crimini mushrooms
½ lb diced roasted or grilled cactus paddle (Remove spikes using a brushing motion over the paddle with the back of a knife. Roast at 400° for a few minutes or place on a hot grill until grill marks appear)
4 teaspoons brandy
1 teaspoons molasses
1 teaspoon smoked black pepper
1 quart vegetable stock
¼ lb potatoes - peeled and diced
2 ½ tablespoons unsalted butter
¾ cup heavy cream
1 teaspoon kosher salt
In a heavy bottomed soup pot sauté garlic and onions until soft. Add herbs and steep 5 minutes. Add cactus and mushrooms, brown slightly. Deglaze with brandy. Stir in molasses, pepper and stock. Add potatoes, cook until totally soft. Puree until smooth. Add butter, allow to melt, then add cream. Salt to taste. Yields 2 quarts.
Springs Bright & Decadent Salad Dressing
1 cup red wine vinegar
1 ½ teaspoons fresh minced thyme
2 teaspoons fresh minced chives
1 ½ teaspoons garlic powder
2 teaspoons sugar
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 ½ cups olive oil
Place first 6 ingredients in a blender. With blender on low slowly drizzle in oil.
½ lb whole blanched almonds
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 ½ tablespoons sugar
½ teaspoon garlic powder
¼ teaspoon onion powder
¼ teaspoon kosher salt
Over a low heat melt ingredients together just until sugar has fully melted and almonds are completely coated. Don’t heat too fast or sugar will caramelize and not coat your almonds. Spread on a lined sheet pan to cool.
¼ lb - shredded Parmesan
On a parchment lined tray pan place small mounds of Parmesan (¼ ounce) about 4” apart. Bake at 350° for 6 minutes or until golden and crisp. Don’t overcook; they taste gross then!
½ lb each of frisee, arugula, and baby spinach thinly sliced pancetta dried cherries
Spread pancetta on a parchment-lined pan. Bake at 350° for 8 minutes just to get it crispy. Toss salad greens with ¼ of the dressing, some cherries and a few almonds. Create a high mound on each salad plate finishing with pancetta. Top with a crisp and more cherries, just cuz. Serves 8.
Potage au Potiron
Not only a great warming soup this also makes the house smell good.
1 lb roasted pumpkin (directions below) or canned organic pumpkin
1 ½ lbs - diced Yukon potatoes - skin on if you are able to puree soup with blender
6 cups - vegetable stock
3 tablespoons - brown sugar
2 teaspoons - kosher salt
1 ½ teaspoons - fresh minced garlic
2 teaspoons - fresh minced rosemary
1 teaspoon - fresh mince thyme
1 cup - heavy cream
garlic croutons and diced chive for garnish
In a heavy bottomed pot bring stock to a boil. Add potatoes and cook until they’re falling apart. Add remaining ingredients except cream. Bring to a simmer then puree or mash, whisk in cream. Makes 2 quarts.
Roasted Pumpkin Meat
Cut a 5-10 lb pumpkin into quarters. Clean off strands and seeds. Place on a roasting pan, meat side down with whole sprigs of rosemary and thyme under each piece. Add ½” of water then cover with foil. Roast at 350° for 1 hour adding more water if needed.
Root Vegetable Smash
Enjoy this on a cool night or surprise your guests with something more interesting than the usual mashed potatoes!
3 gallons water
2 lbs Yukon potatoes - washed and diced
⅓ lb parsnip - peeled and diced
⅓ lb rutabaga - peeled and diced
4oz unsalted butter
1¼ cup heavy cream
2 teaspoons garlic puree (roast garlic cloves in oil until golden brown. Puree garlic, saving the oil for another yummy use)
2 teaspoons sea salt
Boil vegetables until fully softened. Pour through a colander. Meanwhile, in a small sauce pot melt butter in the cream then whisk in garlic. Combine with vegetables using a mixer or hand masher. Salt to taste. Yields 3 lbs.
In addition to an evening of perfect extravaganza what also made an impression on me is that Teatro ZinZanni is a non-profit organization dedicated to the art of helping us mere mortals transcend mortality and expand the realms of those aged 5 to 17 with circus workshops. Explore www.zinzanni.org to discover more epic events.
I’ve recently heard from Catherine, who with her husband Mac, sailed from BC to Alaska with us. They’ve since been enjoying cruising Mexico aboard Indigo, their 42’ Nauticat and remarked that being on the water and in the open air makes you hungry. Another thing about leaving behind full-time work and sailing: you have lots of time to devote to cooking. Hence Catherine created The Mexico Recipes, a website to share the discoveries they’ve made; the recipes and the stories behind them, some of which Catherine will share with you here.
Our first extended stay in Mexico was as land students. We flew from Seattle, where Indigo was moored, to Moralia and attended an intensive, two-month language school Monday through Friday, living in a small apartment and cooking our own meals. After class we explored the city, especially the food markets. Even if many of the fruits and vegetables were unfamiliar, there was no shortage; we just had to figure out how to use them. So when the school offered a cooking class, we were the first to sign up. The instructor announced we’d make an authentic Sopa Tarasca then promptly assembled her ingredients: a can of beans, a can of tomatoes, chicken bouillon cubes, onion salt, and tortillas. We tasted the end product politely, and then went out for tacos and beer. We ordered Sopa Tarasca many times around Michoacan, and explored numerous recipes, some cooks claim the soup must include beans others not.
This recipe can be made with canned pinto beans, and good canned tomatoes. Although cooking beans is quick in the pressure cooker and provides an opportunity to add flavor. Roasting the tomatoes also intensifies the flavor, especially important when the tomatoes available are Mexico are roma which are often short on flavor. I’ve been known to add a dollop of tomato paste to raise the tomato-ness.
1-2 ancho or guajillo chilies - seeded
½ cup chopped onion
2 cloves garlic - whole
3-5 small tomatoes, preferably roasted at 450°F for 25 minutes
2 tablespoons oil
1 sprig oregano
1 bay leaf
2 cups cooked beans (pinto, peruano, or flor de mayo), with some liquid
3 cups chicken broth
Heat chilies then soak in enough water to cover. Save soaking water. Sauté onion and garlic in some oil for 12-15 minutes until brown. Puree tomatoes, chili and onion mix in blender with some of the soaking water. Heat more oil in pan, add puree, oregano and bay. Cook for 5-8 minutes until thick and considerably darker. Meanwhile blend together beans and broth, strain through a sieve. Add bean puree to tomatoes, season with salt, simmer ten minutes. Discard oregano and bay. Serve garnished with strips of crisp fried tortillas, cilantro, queso fresco, and avocado.
Mexican Style Slaw
Cole Slaw in all its variations is a standby for cruisers since cabbage is widely available and keeps well. We’ve made slaws that included apples, carrots, raisins, and even dry ramen noodles but this is the first to receive universal rave reviews. With the step of salting, the cabbage loses any suggestion of rubberiness or aggressive taste. The jicama makes a perfect crisp complement, while the cilantro and jalapeno add enough green to liven both taste and appearance.
6 cups thinly sliced red or green cabbage (or combination)
1 tablespoon salt
¼ cup mayonnaise
¼ cup fresh lime juice
1 fresh jalapeno - seeded and minced
1 jicama - julienne
4 scallions - sliced
¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro
Place cabbage in colander and toss with salt. Lay a plate on top of the cabbage, with a heavy can on top. Drain the cabbage in the sink, or over a bowl, for several hours. In a small bowl, whisk together mayonnaise, lime juice, and jalapeno. Turn cabbage out onto a clean dishtowel or paper towels and pat dry. Toss with lime mayonnaise and remaining ingredients.
Read about this recipe on Catherine's blog by clicking here.
Rice Pilaf with Chorizo, Garbanzos and Raisins
Until recently, I avoided all foods that included chorizo sausage. At some point in the distant past I had encountered a nasty dish heavily laden with chorizo, and I vowed “never again. Then I discovered, from a Rick Bayless chili recipe, that Mexican chorizo is quite different from Spanish chorizo which is usually a hard sausage heavily flavored with smoked paprika. The Mexican version is a softer sausage often seasoned with Mexican chills, and breaks up into crumbles like hamburger when cooked. I now squeeze packaged chorizo to see if it is hard or soft. Even though Mexican chorizo is less aggressive in flavor than Spanish, a little goes a long way toward adding flavor making it a great ingredient to have onboard. Mexican chorizo is also made with vinegar so it partners well with other tangy flavors. I added some chorizo to a rice pilaf and was pleased at how it came out a little crunchy and complemented the other ingredients.
1 tablespoon olive oil
½ cup of chopped onion
1 cup long grain rice, preferably brown
⅓ cup chorizo - broken up
2 cups stock or water
⅓ cup garbanzo beans
¼ cup raisins
Heat stock in a small saucepan, but don’t bring to a boil. At the same time, heat oil in a pan or casserole with a tight fitting lid. Add onion, rice, and chorizo, and cook until the rice is very hot and beginning to brown. Add stock, garbanzos and raisins, cover and reduce to low. Cook as rice demands, turn off the heat and let sit, covered, for another 10 minutes.
Lentil Salad with Chayote and Onion
After four winters in Mexico we’re now cooking with what’s available and no longer lament (much) the lack of a great selection of fresh produce, especially greens and herbs. We aim for vegetables that travel and keep well, and that Mexico does a good job of producing. Different varieties of squash show up in the displays. A light green summer squash, similar to zucchini, is called calabacita, a larger squash, more like winter squash, which I yet to try, but the queen of the market is the handsome chayote squash. Firm, yellow green, the shape and size of a pear, each one unblemished and slipped into its own small plastic bag. Clearly, this is a vegetable to be prized, but how to cook it? The flesh of the chayote is denser than a summer squash and very smooth. I made chayote soup, but its appeal was all in the chilies and onions; it didn’t really let me taste the chayote. We discovered a higher and better use in this recipe as the chayote still has some crunch and a pleasing neutral flavor and absorbs the dressing with which it is paired.
2 cups lentils
1¼ cups salsa verde
¼ cup good olive oil
2 tablespoon fresh lime juice
½ cup fresh cilantro
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 white onion - sliced
2 small chayote squash - cut into ¼ inch slices then ¼ inch strips
½ cup queso anejo or Parmesan
Cook lentils in water until tender but not mushy; 15-20 minutes. Drain well. Meanwhile combine salsa, oil, lime juice, cilantro, and salt in a blender. Stir half the dressing into the warm lentils. Sauté onion and chayote strips in remaining oil until browned but still a little crunchy. Season with salt. Serve lentils stacked on fresh spinach, lettuce, or on their own, topped with chayote and cheese, adding the remainder of the dressing to taste.
To discover more of Catherine’s enticing recipes sail to www.themexicorecipes.wordpress.com
On our visit to Brisbane, Australia last year John and I took a sojourn from Mahina Tiare choosing a road trip. But, as we’re sailors at heart exploring the outback only held a small appeal and we soon found ourselves heading north to the port of Bundaberg to welcome our cruising mates who were taking part in the Port2Port Yacht Rally.
Although I’d never been to Bundaberg before, I’ve long associated this place name to its rum. Bundaberg Rum has a cult following and 'Bundy', as it is affectionately known, is an institution in Oz and abroad. My first initiation with Bundy occurred during my early America’s Cup sailmaking days in Australia. I’d been invited to join a hot shot race boat for the summer series of which the crew contribution was a bottle of rum per race. This was quite a chunk of change for me and different from the crew etiquette in Auckland where you pack something to share for munchies and possibly have a ½ bottle of a rum of sorts, lurking in the bottom of your kit bag, to splash in a mix. Not being much of a rum aficionado I choose to take a bottle of Captain Morgan dark rum for the first race but...alas it was not “Bundy” so I was kicked off the boat. I then vowed to save my pennies and never settle for anything less.
My rewards were sweet for when I was to next arrive in OZ it was as rigger aboard Maiden in the Whitbread Around the World Round race and we’d just won the Southern Ocean Leg; 5,500 grueling miles, in our class. Upon facing the awaiting media I was asked what I’d been looking forward to most upon arrival. When I replied that “I’d love a Bundy” I think I made Australia proud as the next item we were greeted with was a truck piled high with Bundy. Ahhh... a true Bundy bonding event!
Now driving through the landscape to Bundaberg we were being greeted with seas of swaying sugarcane as the region produces one-fifth of Queensland’s sugar crop and is the only place in OZ where all facets of sugar production occur - from growth to milling and finally distillation. The Bundaberg Distilling Company was established 1888 when a consortium of sugar millers began to calculate the profits that could be made from the overwhelming surplus of sticky waste molasses from sugar production. The molasses is combined with water and yeast and fermented after which it is double distilled then sealed away in huge oak vats housed in various Bonds around the distillery site. The vats are still hand made by the neighboring family cooperage and there’s almost 300 vats on the distillery site, each worth 6 million dollars when full of rum. Bundaberg Rum still has the distinction of being Australia’s best-selling spirit and the region’s most notable export so if you’re in the neighborhood consider a visit to the Bundaberg Bond store and a tour of the impressive distillery, if not grab any ole rum and try the following rum enhanced recipes.
Cheddar-Rum Raisin Spread
1 cup raisins
⅓ cup rum
8oz sharp cheddar cheese, grated
8oz cream cheese, at room temperature
½ teaspoon curry powder
dash hot pepper sauce
Soak raisins in rum for 1 hour. Remove raisins with slotted spoon. In a medium bowl or food processor mix cheeses together until smooth and fluffy. Beat in rum, curry powder and hot pepper sauce, then fold in the raisins. Pack tightly in a covered container. Refrigerate, to allow the flavors to blend, for up to 3 weeks.
Rum Glazed Pecans
¼ cups white sugar
¼ cups brown sugar
½ teaspoons salt
4 tablespoons dark rum
3 cups pecans
Mix together and heat sugars, salt and 2 tablespoons of rum over medium-low heat until it boils, stirring continuously. Continue stirring on low heat until syrup begins to appear clear and non-granular, approximately 7 minutes. Stir in pecans. Carefully add 2 additional tablespoons of rum. Stir continuously until syrup returns to a boil. Spoon pecans onto a parchment-lined baking sheet. Bake in a 350° oven for about 12 minutes until bubbling stops and syrup starts to appear hard. Remove from oven and allow to cool before breaking apart pecans. Store in a cool, dry place.
This rum-jerk butter pars well with crab, shrimp or Lobster, shrimp or Lobster
3 tablespoon of melted butter
½ chopped onion
1 tablespoon jerk seasoning
½ cup of chopped sweet pepper
¼ cup gold rum
¼ cup of fresh lime juice
¼ cup each of chopped chives and parsley
½ cup of tomato concasse
Sauté onion, seasoning and sweet pepper 1 tablespoon butter. Remove from heat and pour in the rum and add remaining butter, stirring creamy. Add juice and herbs. Serve over the seafood with tomato concasse for garnish or in dipping bowls on the side.
Vegetables in Coconut-Rum Sauce
25oz sweet potato, cubed
20oz carrots, sliced
6oz green beans, chopped
1½ cups water
4-inch piece of ginger root
6 cloves garlic
2 small chili pepper, deseeded
2 tablespoon oil
2 teaspoon salt
4 teaspoons cinnamon
2 teaspoons coriander powder
1 teaspoon cloves powder
2 teaspoon turmeric
12oz coconut milk
4 tablespoons lime juice
6 tablespoons rum
2 bananas - sliced
In a food processor puree onion, ginger, garlic and chili. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large skillet and sauté puree for a minute. Mix in vegetables and water. Turn heat to low-medium, stir in salt and spices. Add coconut milk, lime juice, raisins and rum and mix well. Simmer until sweet potato and carrots are soft, about 15 minutes. Sauté bananas in remaining oil until caramelized and a little crispy on the outside. Serve vegetables over brown rice topped with bananas and a green salad on the side.
Blackberry Rum Glazed Ham
4 boneless ham steaks - about 1/2-inch thick
1 tablespoon cooking oil
2 tablespoons butter
¼ cup blackberry jam
⅛ cup white rum
½ cup brown sugar
½ cup fresh blackberries
Melt butter in a small sauce pot over medium-low heat, stir in jam, rum and brown sugar. Simmer 3 minutes, add blackberries and cook 3 minutes more. Heat grill pan sear ham 2 minutes each side. Serve ham drizzled with sauce.
Banana Rum Cake
80g butter, softened
100g raw sugar
2 large eggs
3 tablespoons dark rum
100g plain flour
100g corn flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
125g Greek yoghurt
2 bananas mashed with a fork.
Preheat oven320°F, grease and flour a loaf pan. In a bowl mix flour and baking powder. Cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs, one at a time. Mix in yogurt, bananas and rum. Mix in flour. Pour into prepared pan and bake 50 minutes, until a skewer inserted comes out clean.
Rum Raisin Oatmeal Cookies
¾ cup raisins
½ cup dark rum
½ cup butter
¾ cup brown sugar
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 tablespoons molasses
½ cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
1¾ cups old fashioned oats
In a small saucepan, heat raisins and rum to a boil. Remove from heat and allow to rest for 30 minutes Preheat oven to 350°F .Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. In a large mixing bowl, cream butter and sugar. Beat in egg, vanilla extract, and molasses. Gradually beat in flour, baking soda, salt, and oats. Stir in the raisin mix. Drop by tablespoon baking sheet and bake for 12 minutes. Yields 18 cookies.
We always enjoy our time in Port Villa, the capital of Vanuatu although after a few days of experiencing the towns buzz John and I happily retreat north to the tranquility of Mele Bay. One day, in search of an outing, we noticed a new beachside billboard for “The Summit” and intrigued by its location, on the top of the mountain ridge overlooking the bay, we decided it might provide an interesting exploration. After winding up the steep hillside we discovered that "The Summit" is not only a tropical garden and cafe but primarily a business that creates pure and natural health, beauty and body care products inspired by tropical essential oils derived from The Summit Garden.
The newly opened Summit is the result of Australian’s Jim and Lesley Batty who came to Vanuatu as part of a forestry project. Upon purchasing a sandalwood plantation they realized that the stunning views and climate presented an opportunity to establish a large-scale garden with inspiration from Geoffrey Bawa’s garden in Sri Lanka. It so happened that Adam Elhmann, a renowned American tropical landscape architect, was living in Port Villa and kindly developed a plan to create the 11 named gardens that proliferate over twenty acres. A guided tour of the exuberant themed gardens, displaying a kaleidoscope of colors, gave us a fascinating insight into the ways the plants are used both in the Summit Distillery and locally in village life.
In addition to The Summit the Batty’s have established South Pacific Sandalwood Limited which leases the adjacent 480 acres of land. With 300 Australian investors the developments over the last 15 years include the sandalwood plantations containing 120,000 trees, tropical nut trees, lime and other citrus orchards. As the wild harvest of sandalwood has diminished in Vanuatu and throughout the world in the last couple of decades SPSL has been contracting farmers on other islands, in a joint venture, to establish sandalwood plantations. These plantings plus the trees already planted up to 30 years ago by these farmers will eventually provide a reliable annual source of 40,000 trees.
Our visit was even more rewarding with lunch at the café which offers a delightful mix of fresh garden produce and scrumptious cuisine. If you’re after a taste of paradise try the following two recipes, courtesy of The Summit team, or those following inspired by The Summit herb garden and café, and to discover a touch of tropical essentials products visit www.thesummitvanuatu.com.
The Summit Punch
This surprisingly light and refreshing drink is reminiscent of Planters’ Punch, and makes a good conversation starter. Picture yourself on the café deck with one taking in the sweeping view of magnificent Mele Bay to Port Vila. We harvest the ingredients from our plantations early in the morning then process the sugarcane with a manual sugarcane press. The sugarcane juice is not as sweet as you might expect, and as the sugar content is in a raw, unrefined form it’s actually healthy
20oz sugarcane juice
juice of ½ lime
1 tablespoon fresh mint leaves - diced
fresh ginger root to taste
2oz white rum
ice - crushed or small cubes
In an electric food blender, combine all ingredients. Adjust with lime and ginger to suit. Divide between two glasses. Garnish with a lime wedge.
Pumpkin Coconut Lime Soup
The Summit is renowned for its Tahitian limes (Citrus latifolia) which are large, delicious, juicy and seedless. They have a uniquely fragrant, spicy aroma that are superlative in every way to the smaller standard lime (Citrus aurantifolia) also known as the Key lime. The coconut palm (Cocos nucifera), is known as the tree of life here in Vanuatu - it signifies "life" in that it provides food and drink, shelter and home furnishings, fuel, soap, health and body nourishment, and they also participate in religious and cultural activities. We grow many varieties of pumpkin and this recipe combines the 3 staples of lime, coconut and pumpkin in an intriguing way. It’s delicious served either hot or cold. If you intend to serve it cold, use olive oil instead of butter as the butter will set once the soup is cold. We serve the soup in a half coconut shell adding another half coconut shell of garden salad and a substantial bread roll cooked in our wood fired oven.
2lb pumpkin - peeled and chopped, save seeds
1 tablespoon melted butter
4 tablespoon olive oil
1 red onion - chopped
4 sprigs of fresh thyme
1x 14floz can of coconut milk
2 cups vegetable stock
3 tablespoon lime juice
1 tablespoon paprika
1-inch fresh ginger root - grated
salt and pepper
Preheat oven to 400°F degrees. Wash seeds, pat dry and spread out in a baking pan drizzled with butter. Roast 12 minutes. Heat half of the olive oil in a large pot, add onions and thyme, cook five minutes. Add pumpkin and ginger, cook 10 minutes, stirring often. Add coconut milk, 2 tablespoons of lime juice, paprika and stock, simmer 10 minutes. Blend in a food processor until smooth. Season to taste. Serve garnished with pumpkin seeds, pinch of paprika, ground pepper, lime juice and drizzle of olive oil.
Beef Noodle Salad
½ cup chicken broth
⅓ cup hoisin sauce
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons seasoned rice vinegar
2 teaspoons sesame oil
1 tablespoon grated gingerroot
zest of 1 orange
1 clove garlic - minced
salt and pepper
8 oz whole wheat spaghetti
1 lb flank steak - grilled and cut into strips
2 cups broccoli florets
1 red pepper - chopped
1 cup chopped cucumber
1 cup grated carrots
¼ cup chopped green onions
¼ cup chopped fresh basil leaves
¼ cup raw cashews
For dressing whisk together first 8 ingredients and season to taste. Cook spaghetti according to package directions, drain and rinse with cold water. Toss spaghetti with remaining ingredients. Add dressing just before serving.
¾ cup self-raising flour
¾ cup brown sugar
½ cup coconut
½ cup rolled oats
½ cup almond meal
4½oz butter - melted
2 x 400g cans sweetened condensed milk
4 tablespoons golden syrup
8oz dark chocolate
Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a 9-inch square pan with baking paper. In a large bowl combine flour, sugar, coconut, oats, almond meal and butter. Press mixture firmly into pan and bake 12 minutes. Meanwhile in a medium saucepan combine condensed milk, syrup, and butter, cook on medium to low heat, stirring regularly, for 8 minutes. Pour caramel onto base and bake 10 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool for 4 hours. Melt chocolate in a medium bowl over a pot of simmering water. Cool slightly then pour over caramel. Allow chocolate to harden before slicing into 16 squares.
Upon arriving in Australia we soon met Roger Hill and Sherry Scholer on the next dock. Sherry had recently left San Francisco to join Roger aboard his Gulfstar 44, Equanimity and was excited to be living the cruising life.
How did you meet Roger?
I’d joined a website called “Find a Crew” and while crewing on a yacht to La Paz I stood on the bow feeling the gentle breeze knowing somehow I’d achieve my cruising dream. I then received an email from Roger in Australia. We hit it off with daily emails leading to Skype conversations and my travelling to Australia to see how we got on doing some local sailing. We quickly realized there was likely more to this. We’re now heading north to Darwin. We’ll join the “Sail Indonesia” rally then head through Malaysia to Thailand. We plan to sail around the world then back to New Zealand.
What attracted you to cruising?
My grandparents had power boats, so I was introduced to the lifestyle early. My favorite memories were on board with them. I’ve always loved boating and being on/near the water. I’ve been sailing for 9 years and learnt to sail by taking ASA courses.
Do you get seasick?
Yes, on occasion, but each time I’ve gotten more than queasy, there’s been a significant element of fear in the situation (in addition to rough seas).
What is your galley setup?
We have a U-shaped galley with sink by the companionway and stove and counter opposite. The fridge and freezer are at the end connecting both sides. We have a microwave, but don’t use it. I like having a clean and well-sorted space, things easy to get to, but put away and clear, with food stuffs well packaged to keep bugs at bay. I wish the fridge was a little easier to navigate - it’s top-loading, has good space with several shelves, but to obtain items it requires unloading and loading. My one must-have item is a sharp knife, oh, and coffee. Recently we bought a set of 3 Ran Japanese knives and some Scanpan sauté pans to replace worn out Teflon ones. It’s lovely to have just a few, but the right, tools.
What food concerns do you have?
Making sure there is enough of the right things and being able to keep it fresh as long as possible. We buy extras of specialty items we might not be able to find along the way. I’m not too much of a cook, so I make easy dishes like a veggie-chili. No real recipe, just modify a basic chili adding lots of veggies. When we’re in port Roger and I cook together and I’ll do most of it when we’re cruising. We like eating simple and fresh foods, salads with nuts and seeds, stir-fry’s with veggies, peanuts, satay sauce and a small amount of game sausage. Most meals are colorful and nutritious.
What is your favorite food at sea?
Cookies. Before passages we make chili and lasagna and Roger makes the best tuna salad. Well, not my favorite, but I have great appreciation for cabbage, which keeps on going long after all other produce has given up the ghost. Also, Sao crackers, which are sort of like big beefed-up saltines without the salt. They help absorb any tummy acid and stick with you.
Sher’s Coconut Ginger Nutty Oatmeal Crisp Cookies
1 cup butter - room temperature
1 cup packed brown sugar
1 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 large eggs
1½ cups flour
2 teaspoons ginger
1 teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon cinnamon
2 cups quick-cooking rolled oats
1 cup rolled oats
1 cup coconut
½ cup chopped raw nuts (walnuts, pecans, almonds)
¼ cup chopped crystalized ginger
Preheat oven to 350°F degrees. Grease a cookie sheet well with vegetable shortening. In a large mixing bowl, cream together butter and sugar’s until fluffy. Add vanilla, then eggs, one at a time, beating after each addition. In medium bowl, combine flour, salt, and baking soda. Add flour mixture, ½ cup at a time, to creamed mixture, beating well after each addition. Stir in remaining ingredients. By teaspoon drop dough about 2 inches apart on cookie sheet. Bake 10 minutes.
Sher’s Very Veggie Lasagna
1 package of cooked or fresh lasagna noodles
16oz ricotta cheese
3oz Parmesan - grated
1 large package of fresh spinach- chopped
1 egg - beaten
small container of pesto
1 large jar of spaghetti sauce. Can add cooked lamb or chicken mince.
6 large mushrooms - sliced
1 cup chopped broccoli
1 cup chopped zucchini
½ cup chopped carrots
½ cup chopped onions
large package of shredded mozzarella
small package of feta
salt and pepper to taste
Mix ricotta, half the pesto and spinach with egg. Mix remaining veggies together. Grease 2 pans and spread with a layer of spaghetti sauce. Arrange a layer of noodles, overlapping slightly. Layer with some ricotta mixture, veggies and cheeses. Continue layering finishing with spaghetti sauce on top of noodles. Cover with foil and bake at 300°F for 45 minutes.
What local specialty foods have you made aboard?
I make a special apple pie with cookie-dough crust; from a recipe my great-grandmother used. Here in Brisbane we buy local gamekeepers wallaby and venison sausages, and I’m sure as we explore further, we’ll incorporate more local foods into our routine.
Sher’s Apple Pie
1 pie crust (9 ½ inch deep dish) - chilled. I use a sweet cookie crust
6 cups peeled cored and thinly sliced pink lady apples
⅓ cup sugar plus 1 tablespoon
1 tablespoon lemon juice
¼ teaspoon mixed spice (nutmeg, ginger, and cinnamon)
2 tablespoons flour
6 dabs of unsalted butter
1 cup flour
½ cup rolled oats
⅔ cup packed light brown sugar
½ teaspoon cinnamon
¼ teaspoon salt
½ cup cold unsalted butter - cut into ¼-inch pieces
Preheat oven to 400°F. Combine apples, ⅓ cup sugar and lemon juice. In a smaller bowl, mix 1 tablespoon sugar, spices, 6 butter dabs and flour; add to apple mix. Turn filling into pie shell smoothing top to even out. Bake 30 minutes. Meanwhile combine flour, oats, brown sugar, cinnamon, butter and salt, rubbing mix between your fingers to create large, buttery crumbs; store in refrigerator. Lower oven temperature to 375°F. Spread pie with crumble, tamping down lightly. Bake a further 30 minutes or until the top is dark golden brown and the juices bubble thickly at the edge.
Roger’s and Sher’s EQ Pizza
We don’t make our own crusts (yet), but even using basic pre-made crusts, we turn out a pretty yummy pizza!
1 specialty deli sausage - cooked and diced
chopped up raw: spinach, mushrooms, broccoli, zucchini, cauliflower, onion and green onions
sundried tomatoes - chopped
Parmesan cheese - grated
feta cheese - crumbled
mozzarella cheese - shredded
Preheat oven to 400°F. Spread pizza sauce then pesto over crust. Evenly distribute base with sausage bits then raw veggies. Sprinkle with tomatoes and cheeses. Bake 20 minutes.
What is the most memorable meal of your travels?
When I was cruising Alaska, I was invited to a Tlingit Indian “Potlatch” ceremony. Not many non-natives get to attend these and what I thought was going to be a 4-hour event was actually 24. The native foods, including seal, were “interesting” and memorable for sure.
What advice or wisdom can you give?
Mmmm, I’d like to pass on the words of a famous philosopher I’m quite fond of (my Mom) who says, “Life is uncertain, eat dessert first!”
Follow Roger and Sherry’s adventures at www.svequanimity.blogspot.com.
Amanda enjoying “Cuisine Time” with Laurent, Jules, Max and Nicole
After our three week voyage from New Zealand we had a wonderful arrival at Marina Taina, south of Papeete’s airport, with Philippe, the effervescent marina manager, finding us a Med-moor berth surrounded by 100’ - 175’ mega yachts. The next twenty four hours was a whirl of clearing in to Tahiti, final teaching, catching up with cruising friends, a celebration crew dinner ashore and helping our crew pack up and depart, many on extended adventures throughout Tahiti.
With the boat to ourselves for a week we made plans to sail to island Moorea that afternoon once John returned from a search for replacements parts Papeete. Upon his departure I was just taking stock of my home alone boat projects when I heard a faint French voice timidly calling “Mahina Tiare”. As I did not recognize the voice I tried to ignore it for I didn’t really wish to chat with anyone in particular. But on the second call I popped my head out of the companionway to discover it was our new friend Laurent from the island of Moorea.
We’d first met Laurent in April when he’d flown with his wife Nicole and sons Jules and Max from Moorea to take our Oakland Offshore Cruising Seminar. Laurent, having made a note of our arrival in Tahiti, had now stopped by in the hopes of not to missing us for he wanted to ensure that we were most welcome to visit their home on Moorea. The fact that we knew exactly where his house is rather coincidental as in our South Pacific presentation at the seminar we show an aerial view of Cooks Bay and their house happens to be located on the eastern reef entrance with a perfect anchoring spot out front.
With his afternoon free, and the loan of a friend’s car, Laurent generously offered us a ride to the nearby mega Carrefour grocery store. We couldn’t resist and not only did we have an inside scoop on what bargains and specialties to buy we also, for the first time, weren’t struggling a half hour trying to roll an overloaded shopping trolley down the rough sidewalk back to the marina. Upon helping us unload our provisions Laurent jokingly suggested that he’d love to sail to Moorea with us that afternoon and by chance I’d already mentioned it to John. When we replied that we’d love to have him aboard he lit up with a big grin.
Sadly and very unusually there was little wind for the 15 mile passage but Laurent was still thrilled to helm the entire way. Before we’d even dropped anchor in front of Laurent’s house we spotted Jules swimming out across the reef to us while Nicole and Max paddled out in their kayak. What a treat to hear their stories of moving from France to Tahiti, building their lagoon-front home, plus a business in Papeete and Nicole’s dental practice on Moorea. Now their plan is to buy a catamaran and go cruising while the boys are still young.
Over the next week we accomplished our many boat projects, some with the likes of washing down and stowing the storm trysail accomplished easier on Laurent’s front lawn, and also shared numerous fun activities with the boys and although John and I weren’t up to their wakeboard skills John proved to be a dab hand on the water skis. Our joint times were even more rewarding with many shared meals most of which were Laurent’s creation. As Laurent is passionate about cooking it was fun to swap and compare recipes of which the following Laurent wishes to share with you.
Brittany Sausage and Cabbage Stew
2 tablespoon olive oil
1 onion - chopped
1 cup diced carrots
1 cup sliced celery
16 oz thinly sliced smoked sausage, such as chicken and apple
4 cloves garlic - minced
1 small head of cabbage - chopped
1 cup apple juice
1½ cups chicken broth
3 tablespoons cider vinegar
1 tablespoons brown sugar
¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 15-oz can navy beans - drained and rinsed
3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
1 15-oz can diced tomatoes
salt to taste
Heat olive oil in a large casserole pot. Add onion, carrots, celery, and sausage; sauté 4 minutes. Add garlic, cook 1 minute. Add cabbage, apple juice, broth, vinegar, brown sugar, and pepper. Simmer, uncovered, for 5 minutes then cover and simmer 30 minutes. Add beans, tomatoes, and parsley and salt. Cover and simmer for 10 minutes. Serve with crusty French bread. Serves 8.
Laurent’s Reunion stew with lentils and fresh salsa
1 tablespoon olive oil
1lb ground beef, turkey or chicken
½1b spicy sausage
1½ cups chopped onion
1 green pepper - chopped
1 11-oz can whole kernel corn - drained
1 15-oz can fire-roasted diced tomatoes
1/3 cup sliced pimiento-stuffed olives
5 garlic cloves - minced
½ teaspoon salt
Heat oil in a casserole pot and sauté beef, sausage and onion 5 minutes. Add remaining ingredients and simmer 20 minutes. Season to taste. Serve casserole with lentils, rice and fresh salsa. Serves 8.
3 tablespoons oil
1 large onion - diced
2 teaspoons ground cumin
4 cloves crushed garlic
leaves from 1 sprig thyme
salt to taste
Add lentils to a casserole pot with 400ml water and simmer until soft, 15 minutes. Heat oil in a skillet and sauté onion for 5 minutes, add garlic, cumin, thyme and salt; cook until garlic turns golden. Add onions and 250ml water to lentils and cook for 15 minutes.
Provence Potato Salad
1½ pounds small new potatoes
1 cup plus 2 tablespoon virgin olive oil
3 tablespoons white wine vinegar
2 tablespoon dry white wine
salt and freshly ground pepper
2 shallots - finely minced
chopped fresh parsley
snipped fresh chives
Steam potatoes, covered in steamer basket over simmering water until tender, about 20 minutes. Meanwhile whisk together ½ cup of oil, 2 tablespoons vinegar, wine and 1 teaspoon of salt. Drain potatoes, let cool briefly, then peel. Cut into ½-inch slices, combine with oil-vinegar mixture, set aside for 20 minutes. Meanwhile whisk together remaining oil, vinegar and herbs, season to taste. Just before serving, toss potatoes with herb dressing. Serves 4.
Asian Marinated Cucumber
1 medium cucumber - peeled, seeded and cut into strips about 2-inches long and ¼ inch wide
2 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon sugar
3 tablespoon rice vinegar
1 teaspoon sesame oil
1 fresh red Thai chili - seeded and minced
zest of 1 orange
Toss together cucumber, salt and sugar marinate for 20 minutes. Toss in vinegar, oil and chili and marinate for another 20 minutes. Toss again and sprinkle with orange zest. Serves 4 as a side dish or starter.
Amanda meets the dynamic and outrageous Jan Powers in her powerhouse booth
I’m at the celebrated Jan Power’s Farmers Market, held the third Saturday of each month, as a tiny shaft of yellow begins to illuminate the inky black sky over Manly Harbor Village silhouetting the yacht masts in the marina. A deep rhythmic clunk resounds from the surf boat rowers and the oarsman’s calls mixes with the loud cacophony of exotic bird calls. Early, but already Little Bayside Park adjacent to the marina, at the base of Manly Village, buzzes with activity.
Weather beaten, mud covered pickups sporting roo bars back onto the grass and battered wooden crates overflowing with sun-kissed red strawberries, vivid green asparagus stalks, golden tasseled ears of corn and a host of other regional produce are hurled out of rumbling trucks with crackerjack speed. Dusky pink, long stemmed, old fashioned roses are carefully arranged in buckets, their color enhancing the adjourning pail of deep cream roses with the color name Daustin. Just-picked giant knobs of ginger, some with dirt still clinging to their hastily scrubbed exteriors, are carefully stacked as the sweet smell of oven-baked bread wafts through the air mixing with the scent of smoked sausages.
Excitement laces the early morning atmosphere as the crowd gathers waiting politely for the traders to be ready. Several clutch recycled bags, like I do, hoping to fill it with the freshest and finest bounty on offer. Their eyes roam the stalls pausing, then moving on. They are the “regulars,” who come early to beat the later crowds which linger longer. Scattered amount the “regulars” are the visitors, clutching their steaming cup of coffee. They question the regulars asking; What’s in prime season? What should I buy? How should I cook it? Most regulars break into a grin and nod in the direction of the trader not to miss.
When the sun crawls high enough off the Tasman Sea so that there is enough light to read a newspaper the 200 traders from across Australia represented at the market, each showcasing the countries diversity from terrain, climate soil mixed with a blend of cultures that range from Tasmania to Europe and Asia traders, are ready and the festivities begin. A bloke stands before a laden table booming, in a broad Aussie accent, the virtues of his stall. As I point out his mismatched stripped rugby socks rumpling out of his Blundstone boots he shouts “Here Sheila, catch, this one is on the house” and tosses me a pineapple with the classic ease of a rugby player. “Cheers Mate” I reply as I receive the gold and green pine.
But all the vendors are friendly, genuinely proud of their products, and many are quick to offer a sample be it stuffed olives, crisp apples, Greek yogurt, marinated feta or fresh cooked crab. I’m soon loaded down with my new bounty and headed back to the boat to get creative but not before stopping by Jan’s booth to meet the dynamo who makes it all happen. The following recipes are the result of my Jan Powers Manly Farmer Market experience and you can visit www.janpowersfarmersmarkts.com.au to learn more.
Asparagus and Sweet Onion Quiche
1 large red potato
2 tablespoon butter - melted
fresh ground pepper
1 cup grated cheese
1 teaspoon canola oil
10 asparagus stalks - cut into 1-inch pieces
1/3 cup coarsely chopped sweet onion
5 large eggs
1½ cups half-and-half
½ cup plus 1 tablespoon freshly grated Parmesan
4 dashes Cholula chipotle hot sauce
Preheat oven to 375°F. Lightly oil a 9-inch deep-dish pie pan. Cut the potato into paper-thin slices. Arrange slices in a swirling pattern on the bottom of pan, overlapping slices. Brush potato with melted butter, sprinkle with salt and pepper. Bake 12 minutes, remove from oven, sprinkle with cheese. Meanwhile heat oil in a skillet, sauté asparagus and onion 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Spread asparagus-onion mixture over cheese. Whisk together eggs, half-and-half, ½ cup Parmesan and hot sauce. Season with salt and pepper, pour over asparagus and with remaining Parmesan. Bake 35 minutes.
Crab with Ginger-Cilantro Mayonnaise
1 large egg, plus 1 large egg yolk
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
½ teaspoon kosher salt
¼ teaspoon Dijon mustard
½ cup light olive oil
½ cup canola oil
1 bunch fresh cilantro - chopped
1 tablespoon freshly grated ginger
3 cooked crabs
Place egg, egg yolk, lemon juice, salt and mustard in a blender and pulse until ingredients are well mixed, 15 seconds. With motor running slowly add olive oil in a steady stream, a few tablespoons at a time. Repeat with canola oil then add cilantro and ginger. Refrigerate 6 hours to allow flavors to meld.
Pineapple Fried Rice
3 tablespoons corn oil
½ cup fresh cubed pineapple
¾ cup diced onion
3 cups day-old cooked rice
1½ cups bean sprouts
1½ cups sliced cabbage
fresh red Thai chili seeded and minced to taste
1 teaspoon soy sauce
1 teaspoon sesame oil
1 teaspoon Thai fish sauce
1 green onion - thinly sliced - for garnish
Heat oil in a skillet, sauté pineapple and onion until caramelized, 7 minutes. Stir in rice and cook until colored, add sprouts and cabbage. When vegetables soften, stir in remaining ingredients. Serves 4.
Mango & Coconut Chicken
3 cups shredded cooked chicken
½ cup shredded sweetened coconut
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
3 tablespoons Major Grey mango chutney*
½ cup Greek yogurt
½ cup coarsely chopped Italian parsley
½ teaspoon sea salt
black pepper to taste
Combine first 6 ingredients, add parsley and season to taste. Serves 4.*Major Grey is not a brand of chutney but a style. Look for it under various brands in the supermarket condiments or ethnic section.
Nutty Chocolaty 5-Ingredient Fudge Cake
7oz 70% cocoa solids chocolate chunks
4 eggs - separated
3.5oz caster sugar
3.5oz almond meal, hazel nuts or pecans
Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease an 8-inch spring form cake pan. Melt butter add chocolate, remove from heat. Whisk egg whites with a pinch of salt until white and foamy and the volume doesn’t seem to be increasing. Scatter in sugar and keep whisking for a minute. Stir chocolate-butter mixture, add egg yolks then nuts. Gently combine chocolate mixture with egg white mixture. Bake 20-30 minutes or until the top feels firm with a springy mass below. Serves 6.
Unfortunately we rather forgot about our market strawberries as they somehow went walkabout in the depths of our fridge. When they resurface they weren’t quite at their beauty best but not to put them to waste I sautéd/stewed them in a generous dollop of strawberry jam until caramelized. They were delicious served with the fudge cake plus the next morning with cereal and Greek yogurt.
Sunny and Devon aboard Second Chance
There always seems to be an amazing amount of things I'm thankful for and this thanksgiving holds no exceptions. So, I'd like to take this time to say many thanks to all those who have created wonderful foodie items for me to eat and recipes to share with you.
Upon anchoring in at Rangitoto Island in Auckland the flag and homeport of Douglas on the smart neighboring yacht Second Chance grabbed our attention. On closer investigation John discovered old acquaintances, Sunny and Devon. Currently they were on a shakedown cruise, having spent several years refitting their boat and replenishing their cruising kitty, and were spending a quiet night at anchor before heading further afield up the coast. In preparation for their coastal passage Sunny was preparing a chowder whist Devon was monitoring his baking.
Sunny's Ham and Cauliflower Chowder
4 cups sliced cauliflower
3¼ cups chicken broth
2 cups light milk or cream
2 cans potato and leek soup
½ cup water
4 tablespoons cornstarch
¼ teaspoon white pepper
4 cups diced cooked ham
In a large pot combine cauliflower and broth, cover and cook for 10 minutes until cauliflower is almost tender. In a large bowl combine canned soup and cream. In another bowl blend water, cornstarch and pepper. Add to canned soup and mix well. Combine canned soup mix with cauliflower and cook over medium, stirring occasionally until slightly thicken. Add ham and cook 10 minutes.
Devon's Power Pellets
1½ cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
½ teaspoon nutmeg
125 grams butter - softened
2 teaspoon vanilla
4 tablespoons honey
½ cup brown sugar
2 cups raisins
2 cups chopped walnuts
3 cups oats
Preheat oven to 350°F. In a large bowl combine first 4 ingredients. In another bowl combine eggs, butter, vanilla, honey and sugar. Combine wet butter/sugar mix with dry flour mix. Stir in remaining ingredients. Drop large tablespoon of mix onto a cookie sheet and bake 13-15 minutes. I met Ute in New Caledonia as we berthed beside them and Ute was returning from the local market excited to have a reliable source of fresh provisions. She'd just spent the hurricane season in the remote Solomon Islands where it helps to be rather resourceful. The only prospect for fresh meat arrived when the locals occasionally killed a cow and it's was possible to purchase a large chunk. When this occurred Ute would can large portions of meat for later use. That afternoon a as a few of Ute's girlfriends were coming over for a catch-up chat and potluck Ute planned to serve a fresh green beans salad with chunks of whole meal baguette.
Ute with her Canned Meat
Ute's Canned Sweet and Sour Meat
4lbs beef in large chunks
2 cups water
1 cup vinegar
2 teaspoons sugar
2 teaspoons dried mixed herbs
3 carrots - cut into large chunks
3 onions - diced
salt and pepper
Combine water, vinegar, sugar and herbs. Season with salt and pepper. Place meat in a Ziploc bag, cover with marinade, and remove air from bag. Allow meat to marinate 3 days in the refrigerator turning twice a day and ensuring meat is covered. Cook meat in marinade with carrots and onions by either; a ½ hour on high heat oven or 15 minutes in pressure cooker. Remove meat and pack into sterilized canning jars. Bring marinade to a boil then cover canned meat leaving a ½ inch head space, remove bubbles by running a knife blade down the side of the jar. Seal with lid. Serve cold or hot. A ½ cup of the broth makes a great cream sauce to serve with the re-heated meat.
Green Beas with Pancetta
2oz thinly sliced pancetta
1lb green bean - trimmed
½ tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon red wine vinegar
salt and pepper
¼ cup roasted hazelnuts
Place pancetta on a baking tray and grill 5 minutes until crisp. When cool break into shards. Meanwhile boil green beans for 5 minutes until tender crisp. Combine oil and vinegar, pour over beans and season to taste. Top with remaining ingredients. Serves 5.
Susanna sailed with us recently on our Fiji to Vanuatu expedition and was really thrilled when we landed a tuna offering to make her native Argentinian chimichurri for the grilled tuna steaks. Unfortunately our fresh Fijian supply of herbs had already been consumed but as Susana advised me that as chimichuri keeps for week the refrigerator I'll now make it when fresh herbs are available before heading to sea. Not to be daunted by our lack of fresh herbs Susanna set about creating her delicious "Sauce for Fish" that she makes for fresh fish when she's out sailing and cruising her sloop in British Columbia.
2 cups fresh parsley and/or cilantro firmly packed
¼ cup fresh oregano leaves
3-6 cloves of garlic
2 tablespoons chopped onion
½ cup olive oil
2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
Assorted peppers to taste – chili, paprika, black, cayenne, salt
Finely chop herbs, garlic and onion. Whisk in olive oil, vinegar, peppers and salt to taste.
Susanna's Sauce for Fish
4 tomatoes - diced small
3 garlic - chopped finely
½ cup mayonnaise
juice of 1 lemon
salt and pepper
Combine all ingredients. Serves 4.
San Juan Island is full of colorful characters and the following rice pudding recipe in courtesy of none other than our crazy longtime resident painter Scott Bell. Every holiday season Scotty patiently creates his infamous rice pudding (an old school recipe handed down to Scott) and delivers it around the community to friends and family along with a catchy jingle such as "Mr. Sensitive...making the easy impossible".
¾ cup long grain white rice
6 cups whole milk
3 cinnamon sticks
¾ cup sugar
3 egg yolks
1 cup whipping cream
1 tablespoon vanilla
In a pot combine rice, milk and cinnamon, bring to a boil slowly *STIRRING CONSTANTLY. Reduce heat and cook slowly stirring constantly until rice is al dente...slightly undercooked. In a bowl combine sugar, egg yolks and cream. Slowly incorporate some of the hot rice mixture (approximately a cup or two) bringing the mix up in temperature to keep the eggs from scrambling. Add to rice and return to boil slowly *STIRRING CONSTANTLY and cook one minute. Remove from heat, discard cinnamon sticks, mix in a splash of vanilla and sprinkle with cinnamon. Let stand at least one hour before eating.
*Deviation from constant stirring is a sin and using a double-boiler is blasphemy! REMEMBER: patience is a virtue.
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