Auntie's Junk Drawer

Auntie Fouling's Junk Drawer

Odds and Ends from the Galley

Shared on the Tech Net

Green Produce Bags

Evert Fresh Green Bags are green plastic bags to store produce. They extend the life of veggies and fruit by three to ten times. Especially good for things like lettuce and cucumbers. They're reusable. West Marine carries them. (Trumpeter)

Brawny Produce Bags. These are even better than the Evert bags. These come in different sizes including a one gallon zip. Usually comes in packs of ten. Larger quantities can be purchased online. (Mon Amie)

Green produce bags are good at keeping garlic fresh. Blue garlic lasts longer than standard white. (Beluga)

Freeze Dried Foods

Freeze dried veggies, fruit, meat, eggs, etc are lightweight and easy to store. Will last about a year after the package has been opened; otherwise will store indefinitely. Honeyville has a huge selection. (Full Monty, Outrageous)

Canned Meat

Canned meats with the longest shelf life are Spam, corned beef hash, ham, Vienna sausage, sardines, tuna, crab meat, red salmon, pink salmon.

Food to Go

Make a single-pot meal before you head offshore. This should be something non-sloppy that can be served hot or cold if reheating becomes prohibitive due to rough seas. Serve in bowls, and you'll only need a fork or a spoon.

Pasta Nova Scotia is a good example.

Of course you can always make up sandwiches in advance.

Pantry Needs

Bread Mix. Fleischman's "Homemade" no-knead bread mix comes in various styles. Easy to store. (Barefootin, Second Sally)

Butter flavor Crisco will give food a buttery taste. Easy to store. (Salty Paws)

Hungry Jack Hash browns. Four ounces in a dry storage container will yield 1 lb. of hash browns. Tasty good too. (Blue Jacket, Salty Paws)

Pizza dough dry mix (any brand) comes in easy to store packets. Very convenient and inexpensive. (Valkyrie)

Zatarain's Fish Fry. Seasoned Southern Style is choice. Coat fish. Fry or bake.

Milky Ways

Make whole milk by mixing evaporated milk with water. Ratio is one to one. (Tilt)

Nestles Media Crema (a canned cream product) can be poured over fruit, etc for desserts. Shake well, then pour. (Bonnie Lass)

Find Media Crema in the Latin foods aisle. (Scaramouche)

If you like it chilled, store cans in the fridge. (Dyad)

It's easy to make sour cream with Media Crema. Recipe. (Early Out, Moira)

Also use it in bisques and as coffee creamer. (Moira)

Add 1 Tbs honey and a dash of vanilla to use as desert topping. (Dyad)

Nestles Nido can be used as a coffee creamer. It's a powder; needs no refrigeration. (Cat Tales, Valkyrie)

Klim products taste good. (Time Enough Too, Salty Paws)

Oats on Boats

Large containers of oats from the store have lids that aren't too boat friendly. If that wimpy lid dislodges, you'll find stray oats in strange places for weeks.

A one-gallon plastic jar, with a screw-on lid will house them securely and keep them fresh. The square shape is easy to store upright or on it's side.

Pressure Cookers

Use a little oil on beans before cooking to cut down on frothing.

Miss Vickie's Pressure Cooker Recipes site on how to use a pressure cooker, tips, and recipes.

Egg Freshness

A Simple Test

Test for freshness before you crack the shell. Believe it, this is easy on the nose if you find a spoiled one. Fill a cup or bowl with plain water. Place the egg in it. If it floats, it's a bad one... think "belly up." If it sits on the bottom, it's a good one and deserves your love.

Why does that happen? A spoiled egg emits gas within it's shell.

Visual clues: Look for mold and a bluish tint. (Cat Tales)

Check expiration date on purchase. (Windsong)

Coating unrefrigerated eggs with Crisco really does work for long term storage. (Cat Tales)

Things that Don't Work

Ceramic knives can score Corel plates and eventually crack and break them. (Amazing Grace)

Eggies are devices that boil eggs and supposedly eliminate the need to peel them. They're not easy to use, the end result is poor. They do not work for ice-making either, as you have to chip it out. (C_Language)

Trash Odor

Easy to solve. The smelly culprits are usually food packages. They're non-organic, so they can't go directly back to nature with the fish bones. What to do? Put them into an empty jar and cap it or into a zip bag. Store it outside on the deck until your next trash run. No bugs, no odor.

Recipe Cards

Well-crafted printable cards are available online and they're free to grab. Organizing recipes isn't what most of us would choose to do with our time, but it might make a good boat bound day project for yourself or as a legacy gift.

Bread Baking

Prevent over-rising:

Poke a few holes in the top as it bakes. (Dyad)

Add an additional 1/4 teaspoon of salt to the recipe. (Salty Paws)

Cut the yeast back to 1 teaspoon. (Ursa Minor)

Plantains will hold their form for a nice addition in bread. Don't mash them up or liquefy them in bread maker. (Salty Paws)

Garlic doesn't play well with yeast.

Three Grain Bread - make with sunflower, chia, and flax. Put chia seeds in at kneading time; not before or they'll go mushy.

Add 1 tablespoon of cocoa to bread recipe made with caraway seeds for a pumpernickel style bread. (Salty Paws)

Things that Work

Prevent mugs from sliding around with silicone (Le Bella) or hot glue (Salty Paws) placed on the bottom of them as a non-skid


Key Lime Juicer; a small-scale juicer built to work with key limes. Inexpensive at Gourmet Sleuth. (St Jude)

Lock N Lock storage containers have gaskets and seal well. (Salty Paws)

Rice Cooker: a multipurpose appliance which uses only 200 watts. Good for non-slop cooking underway. Success with rice and tapioca. (C_Language) It's also good for: steel-cut oats, heating leftovers without drying them, and steaming lobster./p>

Santoku knife is a small multi functional kitchen knife that chops, slices, and dices. Small size stores easily. (Evening Star, Dyad)

Silicone Galleyware
A silicone colander for the galley won't rust and is easy to store. It's also easy to wash and works beautifully. It's collapsible to 1 3/4 inches with a 9" diameter. Also great for steaming veggies. (Destiny)

We use a silicone loaf pan. The only drawback with silicone is it can't be used under a broiler. (Dyad)

SlipStone small saute pan. Stores easily with it's folding handle. Non stick. (Five and Dime)

Sodastream Make your own carbonated beverages, which is cheaper and easier to store than cases of soda. Use a CO2 canister, tap water, then add flavor. (Kabria)


Baking mixes have a small amount of oil in them that will get rancid. So pay attention to expiration dates and keep your stock rotated.

Canned New Zealand butter, commonly found in the Bahamas, is equivalent to 1/2 pound. (Scaramouche)

Olive oil. Store bulk oil in the fridge and decant into a smaller bottle for daily use, which is always fresh.

Buy yeast in brick form in the Bahamas. Lasts a long time; inexpensive. (Salty Paws)

Freeze These

Carrots - Blanch, cube, and freeze. (Scaramouche)

Cheese - It's not perfect, as some thawed cheese has a crumbling tendency. Best bet against the crumbles is to thaw thoroughly to room temp before opening the package.

Cookie Dough - Make your favorite recipes at provisioning time when all ingredients are likely to be onboard. Freeze the dough in zip-bags.

Cream Cheese.

Green, Red, or Yellow Peppers, chopped.

Ground Beef - Brown and drain it in bulk quantities, then pack and freeze it in meal sized portions. (C_Language)

Marinated Meat - When freezing meat, add some marinade to the zip-bag before tossing it in the freezer. The meat will self-marinate when thawing.

Meatloaf - Make enough for one or more meals. Place each raw portion into a sealed zip-bag. Later: Thaw and bake.

Milk - Afterwards, shake thawed milk vigorously before opening, to blend the solids back into the liquid.

Onion, chopped.

Tea Cubes prevent dilution of iced tea and keeps it cold. (Salty Paws)

Whole Roasted Chicken - (Bought hot at supermarket delis.) Allow it to cool to room temp. Transfer chicken and it's juice into a zip bag and freeze. Later, thaw and heat for 20-30 mins. Save the wishbone.

Salty Snack Tip

Pretzels and other snacks sometimes have a lot of loose salt or seasoning laying on the bottom of the bag. With scissors, snip close to a corner of the bag. Shake and release the salt through that hole. Then open the bag and fill your serving bowl.

Clean Up

Clean up galley surfaces with odorless mineral spirits. It cuts the residue that builds up over time. Works better than things like Simple Green for this application. (Salty Paws)

Place 1 cup of ammonia in a large plastic bag. Put a hard-to-clean pot or pan inside the bag, using a twist tie. Leave overnight. This will remove all cooking residue. (Salty Paws)


Baking soda and peroxide paste will work too. OR rub lime or lemon on the pans. (Five and Dime)

Paint remover works for extreme bake-on. Wash thoroughly afterwards. (C_Language)

Ditto with oven cleaner. (Dyad)

Fire in the Mug

Don't... just don't.

The food editor of a popular Cruising magazine wrote about serving warm drinks in cold weather aboard.

"Heat all ingredients except coffee in a saucepan. When steaming, ignite with a long match and allow to burn for 30 seconds. Pour the flaming liquid into four cups that are 3/4 full of hot strong coffee."

Does Boat US cover that?


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