July 23, 2013

Meet the real yachting heroes

CRUISING STORIES often make heroes of deck crews who brave howling winds and fearsome waves to navigate a small sailboat across an ocean. Very rarely do they give credit to the real hero, the cook.

Galley space is very limited on a small boat, and the galley tilts and lurches so violently that in heavy weather it’s impossible to do more than boil water or heat a can of soup.

You have to plan your cooking step by tedious step. You can’t just set a dish down on the counter. It will be flung off immediately. You can’t even perform a simple act such as pouring from a kettle into a mug until you know the trick, which is to hold one in each hand and pour fore-and-aft, never athwartships.

The fiddles and potholders are never high enough, the galley stores are always buried way up forward, and at the end of it all the crew ... well, the no-good crew will either spurn your meal because they’re seasick or complain that you never, ever give them enough.    

The cooks are the ones who deserve the medals.

Finally, here’s a tip to get you into the medal-earning league: Never pick up a hot pan unless you know beforehand exactly where you’re going to put it down. That’s an essential planning skill for a sea cook.

Today’s Thought
Cooking is like love. It should be entered into with abandon or not at all.
— Harriet Van Horne, Vogue, 15 Oct 56

Growing and smoking marijuana is now legal in some U.S. states. In Washington state there are now phone messages that say: “If you want to buy marijuana, please press the hash key.”

(Drop by every Monday, Wednesday, Friday for a new Mainly about Boats column.)

1 comment:

Ken said...

Deep sinks, very deep sinks!