Browsed by
Month: October 2017

Cruising the San Juans: Part 4

Cruising the San Juans: Part 4

In case you haven’t caught on yet, we’re suckers for good coffee, and when we learned that the Shaw General Store roasted their own coffee beans, we had to try it out.

And, frankly, we had to get some more of those salted caramels. They were so amazing, we still dream about those salty-sweet little morsels.

But we were also ready for an adventure, and our friend, Pamela, had suggested we take the mile or so walk to the county park at the other side of the island. So we did.

shaw island seeds

abandoned little boat

Shaw Island is one of the coolest islands we went to. The general store alone gives it major points, but we were pleasantly surprised to find so much character here. From yard art that could put any other to shame to the tiny seed shack (that was sadly, not open) to the old boats left to die in the bushes, we enjoyed every moment of our time on this island. It was a beautiful walk and the sounds of birds chirping and wind rustling in the trees as we walked down the road made for a serene and peaceful day.

shaw island

From Blind Bay, our plan was to stay a night in West Sound. We found a marina where we hoped to get a little water and pump our tanks, maybe stay an hour and check out the cafe close by. It didn’t look like there was a lot to do close to the marina, but we wanted to do a little exploring anyway. Sadly, things didn’t go as we’d hoped, and we had to come up with a different plan.

Willow anchored in Massacre Bay

That’s how we found ourselves on Skull Island with Katie. We wanted to do some exploring, so we found somewhere else to do some exploring. It was a neat little island, small enough to walk all the way around in a short amount of time, but it was hot, so we let Katie do some swimming and got ourselves back to to the boat.

 

 

Next week we make our way to Stuart Island and hike to a lighthouse. Check it out!

Cheers!

Boat Chef: Fallicious Pumpkin Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies

Boat Chef: Fallicious Pumpkin Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies

Fall has officially arrived in the Pacific Northwest! The trees are turning a million shades of orange, yellow and red and that nip has returned to the air. Sunshine feels fabulous on my cheeks, and I find myself constantly in the mood for something pumpkin.

If you’re feeling like me right now, this is the perfect recipe for you!

Scroll past video to see full recipe.

pumpkin oatmeal chocolate chip cookies
Print

Fallicious Pumpkin Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies


Ingredients

  • 2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 cups oats
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 3/4 cup salt
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg fresh ground if possible
  • 1 cup butter browned
  • 1 1/3 cups brown sugar loosely packed
  • 2/3 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 1/4 cups canned pumpkin
  • 1 package semi-sweet chocolate chips

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

  2. Whisk together flour, oats, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg till combined. Set aside.

  3. In a separate bowl, cream together butter, brown sugar and granulated sugar.

  4. Blend in egg, vanilla extract and pumpkin puree. 

  5. Stir in dry ingredients in 3 parts.

  6. Mix in chocolate chips.

  7. Scoop dough out with a teaspoon, approx. 12 cookies per sheet. 

  8. Bake for 12 - 14 minutes. 

  9. Allow to cool slightly, then enjoy while still warm with a steaming cup of coffee or tea. 

What is  your favorite fall recipe?

Boat Apetit!

 

 

 

 

 

pumpkin cookies

Cruising the San Juans: Part 3

Cruising the San Juans: Part 3

Mackaye Harbor to Blind Bay

ferry at Friday Harbor

Our first night in the San Juans was a rough one. We barely slept all night because of rolling waves, so we woke early, got some coffee together and headed to Friday Harbor!

With only two night’s of anchoring behind us, we had a challenging time anchoring in busy Friday Harbor. With so many boats around, it took us over an hour just to choose the right place. We dropped and pulled up and chose a different spot twice before we finally settled down somewhere that felt comfortable to us…only to have a fishing boat show up a few hours later and hook up to the “crab pot” we thought was floating near us. Fortunately, it was a small boat and it wasn’t too close, but its presence kept Jim awake for the second night in a row.

Friday Harbor sunset

We enjoyed exploring Friday Harbor the next morning. We got iced lattes and breakfast sandwiches at Salty Fox Coffee and then meandered through the streets of town, checking out shops and enjoying the beautiful day. Down at the dinghy dock as we were heading back to Willow, we happened to notice a couple in a dinghy struggling with their motor and fending off a piling, so we rode over to see if we could help. They were grateful for the tow back to their boat as they were transporting blocks of ice for their ice box, and were fearful they’d melt by the time they got the motor going again. Things always seem to go wrong at the least convenient moment, don’t they?

After debating staying a second night in Friday Harbor, we decided to move on. Peter (the old owner of our boat) had suggested we check out Blind Bay on Shaw Island. He said it was a quiet anchorage, not too much motion even though the ferries passed by on their way to Orcas Island, and a good place to just relax. It sounded perfect.

Though it seemed to be a more popular spot than he’d remembered, it was still exactly what we were looking for. We found a nice spot, dropped anchor and then took Brutus out to explore. We parked at the Shaw General Store dock and grabbed an ice cream and some of their amazing salted caramels and then brought Katie over to Blind lsland for a little exploring. We finished off the day with a nightcap on deck and watched the sun set over the San Juan Islands. It was perfect.

Stay tuned next week as we explore Shaw Island and head to Westsound!

Cheers!

 

 

 

 

Boat Chef: Bodacious Breakfast Potato Stacks

Boat Chef: Bodacious Breakfast Potato Stacks

Fall has officially arrived! And colder weather calls for hot, delicious breakfasts to warm us from the inside. This recipe is so easy to make and it’s almost always a hit. We like to make individual-sized stacks, but you can totally do this in a full-sized spring form pan and serve it to a crowd as well. We top ours with a couple of fried eggs, but the sky is the limit when it comes to accompaniments.

Scroll past the video for the full recipe.

 

bodacious breakfast potato stacks
Print

Bodacious Breakfast Potato Stacks

deliciously seasoned stack of breakfast potatoes

Course Breakfast
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
Servings 2 people

Ingredients

  • 4-5 red potatoes sliced thin
  • 2 tbsp butter melted
  • 1/2 cup nutritional yeast maybe more, depending on your taste
  • seasoning to taste
  • salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 425.

  2. Grease your spring form pans.

  3. Layer potatoes, butter, nutritional yeast, seasoning, salt and pepper until you've reached the top of your pan

  4. Bake for approx 25 minutes

  5. Top with a few fried eggs and enjoy!

Recipe Notes

Make this recipe vegan by using a butter substitute...and omitting the eggs on top.

Boat Apetit!

 

 

 

 

breakfast potato stacks

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cruising the San Juan Islands: Part 2

Cruising the San Juan Islands: Part 2

*This post includes affiliate links. That means if you click a link and purchase the item, we get a little bit of commission, which we appreciate the heck out of, btw!

Port Ludlow to Mackaye Harbor

Our first experience anchoring was…fun. Aside from some quirkiness from the windlass, we did pretty good! Port Ludlow is a muddy bottom (like most of the Puget Sound area), so it was a good place to learn. We were exhausted by the time we got settled down after taking Katie to shore to do her businesses, but we managed to spend a few minutes enjoying a beautiful sunset.

sunset at port ludlow

 

We faced our first “living on the hook” challenge: making coffee with no shore power. Usually we use an electric kettle to get the water temperature exactly right, an important element of the brewing process when you use a Chemex coffee maker. Without power, we had to heat the water in a pan and then pour it into the kettle (we use a gooseneck kettle for even pouring). A stovetop kettle is definitely on our wish list for future cruising adventures, but for now, this worked quite nicely for us.

Before we got to the actual cruising portion of this adventure, we had one stop to make: my dad’s family’s annual reunion in Sequim.

I have such fond memories of attending the reunion when I was a kid. We made a road trip out of it several times, and those trips are some of my best memories of childhood. We would stop and camp along the way, sleeping in this green tent, all four of us (my parents and my brother, Matt. Dan was there for one trip, I believe), and cooking on a camp stove. The Pacific Northwest is known for its berries, and I remember picking strawberries one year and my mom making a strawberry pie inside the tent because it was pouring rain outside.

 

This was the first time in over 20 years that I made it to the reunion. Since I was a kid the last time I went, I didn’t remember a whole lot of people, so it was fun to re-meet so much of my dad’s side of the family. Jim and I both really enjoyed chatting with everyone, getting a tour of the dairy farm run for three generations by the Smith family, and having my fingers sucked on by baby cows. There was so much good food and good conversation that all around warmed my soul.

dairy farm in sequim, wa
The family farm from the mouth of Sequim Bay

That night was a full moon (or almost full), and it was red in all the smoke from the fires. We sat outside, enjoying a nightcap and listening to the music coming from the wedding at the yacht club. It was a perfect way to end a wonderful day.

 

red full moon

 

From Sequim, we made our way across the Straight of Juan de Fuca and into the San Juans. Our first stop was Mackaye Harbor on the south side of Lopez Island. We picked blackberries and checked out a cute little general store and enjoyed a beautiful walk on this green and lush island. Everyone who passed us waved from their cars, and we just loved how friendly and welcoming people were.

dirt road on Lopez Island

Next week we start really exploring the San Juan Islands. Stay tuned as we anchor at Friday Harbor, Blind Bay and more!

Cheers!

Boat Chef: Tummy-Warming Veggie Chili (in the Wonderbag)

Boat Chef: Tummy-Warming Veggie Chili (in the Wonderbag)

As soon as the weather gets cold, I start craving soup. Soup is such a cozy, comforting dish to warm your tummy. And while chili is technically not soup, it has the same warming properties and it sounded good on this cold Pacific Northwest fall day.

When we started looking into moving aboard last year about this time, we came across a YouTube channel called Sailing Selkie. It was a young couple who were making the transition from living in an apartment to living on a sailboat in the Seattle area. We watched their videos over and over. They were doing exactly what we were working toward! In one of their episodes, they made a delicious looking pot of soup in a Wonderbag and we immediately added it to our list of needed boat items. Sadly, Sailing Selkie is no more, but we had to credit them with our discovery of this awesome slow cooker that requires no electricity.

This chili recipe will work in any slow cooker (or even just on the stovetop if you prefer!), but it was perfect for our Wonderbag.

Scroll past the video for the full recipe.

 

wonderbag veggie chili
Print

Tummy-Warming Veggie Chili

Veggie chili to warm your tummy made in a Wonderbag or other slow cooker

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 4 hours
Total Time 4 hours 15 minutes
Servings 12 servings
Author lifeatsixknots

Ingredients

  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 1 large onion chopped
  • 2 large carrots chopped
  • 1 med sweet potato chopped
  • 2-3 jalapenos chopped
  • 2 med zucchinis chopped
  • 1 bag frozen corn
  • 2-3 cloves fresh garlic chopped
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes (or chili powder)
  • 1 can kidney beans drained
  • 1 can navy beans drained
  • 2 cans white beans (Great Northern) drained
  • 2 cans pinto beans drained
  • 1 can tomato paste
  • 1 can petite chopped tomatoes
  • 1 can fire roasted chopped tomatoes
  • 1 can Guiness draught beer or other dark beer

Instructions

  1. Melt butter in a pan. Add onions. 

  2. Add sweet potato, carrots, jalapenos to the pan and cook for a few minutes, stirring occasionally. 

  3. Add fresh garlic and spices. 

  4. Add tomatoes, tomato paste, beans and beer. 

  5. Bring to a boil.

  6. Remove pot from stove and put it in the Wonderbag. 

  7. Set aside for 3-3 1/2 hours.

  8. Add zucchini and corn.

  9. Let cook for another 1-2 hours. 

  10. Serve with your favorite toppings. We love sour cream, a little shredded cheese and sliced avocado!

Recipe Notes

If you are using a regular slow cooker, simply put all your ingredients into the slow cooker, mix well and cook on high for 5-6 hours or low for 8-9 hours.

If you are planning to leave your boat while your chili cooks, you can add the corn and zucchini with your beans and tomatoes. We just like them a little less soft, but they will be fine cooking the full amount of time.

What are your favorite chili toppings? Let us know if you try this recipe and what you think!

Boat Apetit!

 

 

 

 

Cruising the San Juans: Part 1

Cruising the San Juans: Part 1

Poulsbo to Port Ludlow

The most unfortunate thing about our summer was that we were caught up in replacing the mast step and repairing a stringer for most of the cruising season. We had so many plans, so many intentions to cruise here and there, exploring the Puget Sound, plans that were put on hold while we made major repairs to our boat.

So you can bet your bottom we set sail at our first opportunity once the boat was back in operable condition. All winter our friends had been telling us how great the San Juans are, how we have to get out there and explore the islands. And we’d been chomping at the bit to do just that.

We had a long list of things to do before we could leave. Provision the boat. Clean the boat. Check to make sure everything was in working order. Laundry. Make sure Katie had food. Learn how to anchor. Charge all of our batteries, since we would be staying at anchor most of the time. Make sure we had enough coffee to last us the trip. Fill the fuel and water tanks. Pump out our holding tank. Etc. Etc. Etc.

We got everything done except “Learn to anchor.” It made me a little bit nervous that we had never done this before we left on a long trip, but Jim had done a lot of research, talked to a lot of people and felt confident that we could figure it out.

And we did. In Port Ludlow, just before dark, with a windlass that just didn’t want to work at first.

Check out our video for more about the first leg of our San Juan Islands adventure.

Cheers!

Boat Chef: Yummazing Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Zucchini Bread

Boat Chef: Yummazing Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Zucchini Bread

While neither Jim nor I have problems with gluten, I did suffer from a wheat allergy for a while and spent a good deal of time experimenting with gluten free baking. When we moved up to Washington, we found we had a few friends who suffered from gluten allergies, and since I find great joy in spreading love through baked goods, I thought it was the perfect opportunity to try out Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free 1-to-1 Baking Flour.

It’s an awesome product, and it is literally a 1-to-1 replacement for regular wheat flour, so it’s the simplest way to make baked goods gluten free that I have found. And it has a surprisingly pleasant texture. So many of the recipes I used to make were dense and cardboard-like. This flour gives cookies and breads a nice, soft, chewy texture that is quite close to it’s wheat-based counterpart.

Scroll past the video for the full recipe. And if you give it a try, let us know what you think!

 

gluten free zucchini bread
Print

Yummazing Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Zucchini Bread

A super yummy gluten free zucchini bread with just enough chocolatey goodness to satisfy a sweet tooth....that doesn't taste like cardboard!

Servings 8 people
Author lifeatsixknots

Ingredients

  • 2 cups flour
  • 3/4 tsp baking soda
  • 3/4 tsp baking powder
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg freshly grated if possible
  • 2/3 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 tbsp vanilla
  • 1 1/2 cups zucchini grated
  • 1 cup chocolate chips

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

  2. Sift or whisk together flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt in a bowl.

  3. Add cinnamon and nutmeg. Whisk.

  4. In a separate bowl, combine eggs, vanilla, olive oil and honey.

  5. Add dry ingredients and zucchini to wet ingredients. Mix until just combined. 

  6. Add chocolate chips.

  7. Grease a loaf pan (or small baking dish if that's what you've got). 

  8. Spread batter in the pan. 

  9. Bake for 50-55 mins. 

  10. Allow to cool most of the way before cutting and enjoying!

Boat Appetit!

 

 

 

 

gluten free zucchini bread