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17 March 2007 Kawau Island

March 27th, 2008 · No Comments

I have been wanting to start a blog for some time but have not had the time to sort out the technical side. So this is a compromise – I’ll be doing a diary by email (ah ha u say hence elog!).

I’ll be talking about boats & food. Or possibly food & boats. And, of course I’ll be unable to resist throwing in my observations on life.

Overslept, so we were up later than planned and had to do some final shopping. Had done most of the provisioning at supermarket last night. But I was tired so it was uninspiring to say the least. Anyway after a trip to the butcher, baker and green grocer I have a good supply of meat, vegetables and hot-x buns.

Once everything was stowed we cast off.

That is after last minute panic of finding water in our bilges and our automatic bilge pumps not turning on. Found to be from log paddle wheel and water had not reached float switches to activate pumps. For those who know nothing about boats: log = speedometer, paddle wheel = paddle wheel and pokes down into water through hole in bilge, bilge = space below sole, sole = floor boards, float switch = switch activated when water reaches a certain level, well we hope, but DO NOT plan to test.

So Rob bailed (perhaps a couple of litres so barely an incident) and then we left. After a stop at the fueling jetty to fill diesel tanks we motored up the Waitemata harbour. The weather was glorious – a hot clear day. Auckland is a stunning city from the water.

But, no wind, so we motored. I am informed that it was an uneventful motor to Kauwau, but in my usual fashion, as soon as we are underway I skive off to my bunk to read and sleep. Naturally I reappear 4 hours later to take over from Rob for the last hour & a half to Bon Accord harbour. Where we dropped the pick (pick = anchor) at about 5:30.

But I promised you food. Once we were settled (no big deal in no wind and flat sea) I start cooking. On Zinkwazi this has it’s challenges as: my galley (galley = kitchen) is small, no electric appliances, limited frige space and stove is small, although I do have an oven (dainty size 12 chicken oven, so no turkey here).

Plan for supper is rump steak, creamed spinach & over baked potatoes. I set about finding everything I need – easy at the start of a trip because ilve just put everything away.

Now any cook can make baked potatoes, but to over bake is an art. Turn on oven (don’t bother consulting Edmonds to convert gas settings to degrees) just set to highest. Prick potatoes (mine are oven ready and pricking avoids exploded potatoes which is another recipe altogether) put into oven and bake for an hour. Then get Rob (or his equivalent) to check if they are cooked. If they are, then bake for another 30 mins and then turn oven off.

Some time after this start the creamed spinach. Chop an onion and cook over a low heat with enough water to avoid burning. When soft and lightly caramelised add sliced oyster mushrooms (can be any mushrooms but I just happened to have oysters) and saute. Meanwhile, make a paste with flour and water and add cream. Add sliced spinach to mushroom mix and pour in cream mix. Stir until thickened, season well remove from pan which is needed for steak. Put creamed spinach into oven with potatoes and turn oven back on (dunno why the bothered to give me a range of temps, I only use the hottest).

Then I cooked the steak – for Rob’s I put into pan, go away read war & peace, come back, add mine, flip and serve. The potatoes have crisp skin and are floury and tender inside. Spinach is creamy, my steak bleeds all over my plate, Rob’s does not. Very delicious.

Tomorrow we head north. Forecast is for 15 knots (knot = nautical mile, about 1.8km) so hopefully we can sail.

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