When we go on vacation, we take a vacation from everything including cell phones, laptops, and reasonable diets. If you want to gain weight really fast, live on a boat for two weeks. I know, it’s counter-intuitive. One would think with all that glowing exercise, weight would simply peel off. If you believe that, I have some property in Florida… No, my friends. Sailing the Gulf Islands consists of short bursts of activity and ladder climbing interspersed with hours of reading, sleeping and eating. There is the occasional hike, or slow perambulation. Falling into the water doesn’t count as an activity. This is a recipe for disaster but it sure is delicious.
First, there is the alcohol. At home, a mixed drink is a rarity. It would be empty carbs. Plain and simple. But somehow in my mind, ‘vacation’ is the same as ‘celebration’ and there is delicious vodka left over from Claire’s ‘Welcome Home’ party, so it goes on the boat. Here is my recipe for the perfect Lemon/Lime Drop Martini in case you, too, could use a couple of extra inches around the gut.
1 part vodka (or 1 cup, if you will)
1 part lemon or lime juice (another cup)
½ part sugar syrup (1/2 a cup)
½ part Triple Sec (another 1/2 a cup)
ice; Shake shake shake Pour into tumbler. Repeat. Serves two, sort of.
While you are drinking that, let’s talk about what to make for dinner. Galapagos has no refrigeration yet. But we like cold drinks and fresh fruits and vegetables. So we use the fridge as an icebox. Just like at home, as foods begin to ‘need cooking’ we get a little creative with our combinations. When the broccoli began to scream for attention, I whipped this up in a hurry. I wonder if it would be just as good without the potatoes, which I never even think about cooking with at home. Naw. It probably wouldn’t.
Eggless Skillet Fry
1/2 onion, chopped or sliced
some small orange and red peppers, or large ones – whatever you have handy
hash browns left over from breakfast
bacon – because it makes every single thing better
Fry bacon in skillet, extra crisp, remove bacon and set aside. Leave the fat in the skillet. Why waste a good thing? Stir fry vegetables on terribly hot. Salt and pepper for flavor. Less salt, due to bacon. At last minute add rehydrated hash browns, stir fry until hot, then add crumbled bacon. Serve. Outstanding after a long day of motoring and sitting on your hind end, especially if dinner at 9:00 pm, just before bed. Maybe add a few red pepper flakes? Don’t blame me if you need larger pants after this. I warned you fair and square. For dessert? Fresh fruit and yogurt. One needs to make some sort of effort here.
On the lighter side, sometimes when hiking you can take advantage of the bounty of nature. Such is the case on Portland Island, where there is an old orchard, and loads of blackberry bushes. There is something about harvesting fruit like this that is soul satisfying. I look forward to Portland Island every year, partly because of the berry/orchard combination. We ate blackberries fat and juicy from the vine.
This year, the apples were almost completely ripe. If we had longer sticks, the riper ones at the top of the tree would have been within reach. As it was, I had a longish piece of driftwood to use, left thoughtfully at the base of a tree by another scavenger. I filled my bag with apples, stuffed a few into Mike’s backpack. My plan: applesauce.
Portland Island Applesauce
As many apples as you can carry
Sweetener of choice – honey, sugar, stevia, whatever
Cut up the apples, put them in your large pot. Add water about 1/2 way up the apples. Cook until the consistency you adore. Add sweeteners as it cools. You can also add spices such as cinnamon and cloves.
I discovered that, unlike my supermarket variety of apples, these have LOTS of pectin in them. They would make a fabulous pie (next year). So you may have to keep adding water as they cook. If you go to Portland Island in the late summer or fall, bring some canning supplies, or at least a pie crust.
Here’s one thing I did with this applesauce:
Peanut Butter Applesauce Spread
A cup of warm applesauce
1/4 cup, or whatever, peanut butter
Mix well with a spoon. Lick spoon. Delicious on crackers of any variety.
Best Tacos Ever
Recently, we were nominated for the Liebster Award and we had to name our favorite restaurant. I’d like to correct my answer. I now consider Village Tacos, on Galiano Island to be my favorite restaurant. Who needs Mexico when it comes to great tacos?
We discovered this little gem during a long walk down the main road from the marina. There was this place, set back from the road, that was a house that looked like it had an outdoor dining room. This little sign was by the side of the road:
From my notes in the Cruising 2014 diary: It’s a ‘farm to table’ place and all the food is fresh, local, whole, and delicious. I had the buttermilk chicken tacos, Mike chose the chorizo tacos. We had bay laurel iced tea – delicious tea with a bay laurel leaf in the glass. I would not think of this but it was lovely. The chips were crisp and thin, made there. The salsa thick and spicy. Not too hot. Hand made corn tortillas, thin, and delicious, full of ripe corn flavor. I don’t know about Mexico, but Galiano Island is now famous to me for its tacos.
Want to know what else they have?
This was our one and only ‘eating out’ during the trip. So worth it, and probably the healthiest meal I had in two weeks. Now that we are back to our regular lives, the piper must be paid. Ugh. Back to the old ‘being careful’. In my next life, I plan to have a high metabolism, be naturally thin, and love all forms of tortuous exercise. I can’t wait.