susys running away to sea

"The rigors (sic) of an expeditionary lifestyle"

Thursday, January 04, 2007

Christmas Day in Biscay

So, for Christmas lunch a day or so later, over the edge of the continental shelf, halfway across Biscap, I played housewife. Every cranny in the boat was crammed with jars, tins, packets - food! For lunch, we had: a starter of melon and prosciutto ham, followed by roast turkey, stuffing, lightly burnt raw vegetables and lumpy gravy.

Let me explain a little more. You might be wondering what happened to the vegetables. Well, with a boat oven, the heat is at the back. So baking tins in an oven need to be rotated to ensure even browning of the food.

The procedure is this:

a) don full set of foulies + welly boots (mine are red with flowers, but any colour will do)
b) arm self with several thick cloths to protect hands
c) approach oven crabwise from side
d) wrestle oven door to open
e) fail
f) approach oven from front, having checked will and insurance policy
g) wrestle oven door open - success!
h) failure! Field tins full of hot heavy food as they hurtle towards you
i) slam oven door shut rather rapidly and wipe forehead with cloths. Burn forehead with hot cloths
j) push front of oven up with one hand, open door with another hand, tins safely at back of oven. k) with third hand, winkle a tin off oven shelf, drop it, turn tin round, pick up contents surreptitiously from galley floor, blow off dirt, put back into now-turned tin, put tin back in oven
l) slam oven door as tins threaten to leap out of oven again, sliding wildly on greasy floor
m) pretend to your fellow crew members everything is just fine ...
n) despite all efforts, vegetables refuse to cook, and end up black on one side, raw on the other
o) on serving, crew now so desperate to eat, anything tastes wonderful
p) cook has lost appetite, feels queasy, retires to bunk

Happy Christmas!


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