Cooking Aboard

cajun chicken pasta

Since moving aboard I’ve discovered that deep inside me, under the layers of Tom Boy that I’ve built up over 27+ years, there’s a girl. She doesn’t wear glitter or pink, but she does like some of the more domestic sides of life, including cooking, making desserts, and looking for ways to make the boat a little more home-ish.

When I had a full kitchen with an oven, a four burner stove, microwave, blender, and all that other kitcheny stuff, I rarely used it any of it (save the microwave). Now that I have a galley, which is so small I can reach everything without moving my feet, if even fully outstretching my arm, I’m spending a lot more time cooking. And I don’t even have an efficient oven (I don’t use it). Go figure.

Side Note: I’ve never understood people updating their Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram statuses with photos of their soon-to-be-devoured food. Perhaps that’s just what real foodies do, and I’m not part of that click? Or maybe it’s a “neener-neener look at what I’m eating while you have a second bowl of cereal” kind of thing. The point is, I’m telling you about some tasty no-bake dishes that you may enjoy aboard your boat, photos included, and it’s not to brag or try to make you feel bad about eating cold cereal. Cold cereal is yummy.

Creamy Cajun Chicken Pasta (courtesy of Plain Chicken)

cajun chicken pasta

2 boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into thin strips
4 ounces linguine, cooked al dente (I used whole wheat linguine)
2 teaspoons cajun seasoning
2 tablespoons butter
Diced green onion
1-2 cup heavy whipping cream (I used half skim milk and half whipping cream)
2 tablespoons chopped sun-dried tomatoes (I used stewed tomatoes instead)
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon dried basil
1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/8 teaspoon garlic powder (I used fresh minced garlic)
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Place chicken and Cajun seasoning in a bowl and toss to coat. In a large skillet over medium heat, saute chicken in butter or margarine until chicken is tender, about 5 to 7 minutes. Reduce heat add green onion, heavy cream, tomatoes, basil, salt, garlic powder, black pepper and heat through. Pour over hot linguine and toss with Parmesan cheese.

Whole Wheat Banana Bread Pancakes (courtesy of howsweeteats.com)

banana bread pancakes

makes 12 pancakes

2 cups whole wheat pastry flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
2/3 cup milk
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
3 large ripe bananas, mashed
2 tablespoons butter, melted

In a large bowl, combine flour, baking powder, sugar, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg in a large bowl. Measure out the milk and add the vanilla extract to it. Whisk together the dry ingredients and add in milk and vanilla, stirring to combine. The mixture will still be dry. Add in mashed bananas and mix. Add in melted butter and stir until batter is somewhat smooth.

Heat a skillet or grilled on medium heat. Using a 1/3 cup measure, spoon batter into rounds and cook until bubbles form on top – about 2-3 minutes. Flip and cook for a minute or two more. Repeat with remaining batter. Serve hot with butter and syrup, or the vanilla maple glaze.

Note: if you don’t have/can’t find whole wheat pastry flour, use 1 cup of regular whole wheat and 1 cup of all purpose. Or 2 cups of all purpose.

Vanilla Maple Glaze

1/2 cup maple syrup
3/4 cup powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Combine all ingredients in a bowl and stir until smooth. Pour over pancakes.

Chocolate & Peanut Butter Oatmeal Cookies (Courtesy of One More Moore)

oatmeal chocolate cookies no bakeThese are GREAT with coffee. Lots of sugar, though, so be warned.

1/2 C Butter
2 C Sugar
1/2 C Milk
4 Tbsp Cocoa
1/2 C Peanut Butter
3- 3 1/2 C Quick cooking Oats
2 tsp. Vanilla

Add the first 4 ingredients in a saucepan. Bring to a rolling boil, and boil for 1 minute. Stir in the next 3 ingredients and drop onto wax/foil paper. Let cool until set.

Grilled Veggies (sorry, no photos, I ate too fast)

In an effort to eat healthier for more energy to exercise, I’ve been experimenting with cooking vegetables, mainly on my grill. I put broccoli into tin foil, dressed up with extra virgin olive oil, and sprinkled with Parmesan cheese, and put it on the grill. They smelled like french fries, and I burned my mouth eating them, I couldn’t shove them in my mouth fast enough. I gave the same treatment to cauliflower with similar results. Eating veggies never felt so good.

Next to Try

I’m also going to try out some curry soup and cornbread I found over on cruisinglealea.com. I’ve pinned both recipes on pinterest.com (a website that sucks up more time than I’ll ever admit to) if you’re interested in reading about them.

Do you have any great recipes to try that require just a stove or grill? Especially healthy ones? Let me know, please!

By Courtney

Courtney Kirchoff is a published novelist, graphic designer, dog and horse lover, and lots of other (hopefully good) things. She lives in the greater Puget Sound area in Washington State with her lovable shelties, Riley and Margo.

5 comments

  1. Yotta get that oven up and running!! Nothing like an oven adding to the comfort of the cabin along with the smell.
    We do a lot of pot roasts from November-March.
    Comfort food in so many ways

  2. Two great items on the grill are:

    Potatoes & onions sliced thinly. Make a foil pouch, layer a layer of potatoes & then onion slices, alternate, put a few dollops of butter, any spices you love, seal up the pouch & pop on the grill. As they are sliced thinly they don’t take long – approx 20 mins. Enjoy!

    Another foil pouch item is grilled veggies! I use many different combinations, depending what I have on hand. My favorite combo is: beets, sliced thinly, mushrooms, cut in half, peppers, either sliced or chunks, red onion, chunks. Drizzle with olive oil & your favorite spice combo, seal up the pouch, approx 20 -30 mins for these also. Yummy!

  3. Ok now I’m hungry….good recipes. I also here alot of crusers use presure cookers to make one pot meals while underway.

  4. So happy to see some information about cooking aboard. I’m about to begin my journey of living aboard and can use all the help I can get!!

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