In the 4th part of our 30-weeks to minimalism series, we tackle the galley. Once again, we will need to think critically about what items are used daily and can still serve us in the future aboard a sailboat. Being a foodie (and now a “sea foodie”) makes this a greater challenge, as we have accumulated many tools and equipment to make our lives easier when it comes to preparing delicious meals and entertaining guests. For example, I don’t think the sous vide will be coming along nor the German crystal stemware or the Turkish wine flask or the French hand-blown glasses…
The list goes on and on.
When Bill’s wife took me through the galley, one of her favorite features was the layout. Notice how the cleaning, prep and cooking stations face toward the saloon. This is pretty awesome while on a mooring ball, and we want to entertain guests down below.
What other features make this a good layout?
- Can the cook be thrown across the boat?
- Plenty of ventilation
- Are the “hot” and “cold” areas logical?
I will take each of these points in turn below.
Can the cook be thrown across the boat?
As you can see from the picture above, when the cook is preparing a meal sink, prep area, stove and access to hatches is contained within a U-shaped galley. There is also a strap in the even that there is forward-motion roll. The stove is gimbaled athwartship which means when the cook needs to take something out of the oven, there is less surprise or spillage when removing hot items.
Plenty of ventilation
When it comes to ventilation, note that the galley is located just as you step down from the companionway. There are also 3 hatches/portlights and fans positioned over the stove to direct airflow out of the boat. The “sea foodie” in me appreciates all the attention to detail when it came to this boat’s design.
Are the hot and cold areas logical?
Refrigeration is located on the starboard side, recessed into the countertop and positioned in the outer permitter of the boat, meaning closer to the surrounding water which will naturally cool it. So once the refrigerator is cooled by the Sea-Frost engine refrigeration (hydraulic) to cool the refrigerator in the galley and the cockpit, food stays cold longer.
Does it spark joy?
Despite being a sea foodie, I am not particularly attached to the cookware, place settings or appliances we have. Don’t get me wrong… I invested quite a few pennies on Le Creuset, Riedel, Breville along with the various Crate & Barrel, William Sonoma and other brand name kitchen and dining items.
If it’s gonna break, rust, takes up too much space, we’re gonna ditch it all. Instead, we’ll invest in squared off containers whether plastic or glass for storing provisions, stacking pots/pans such as Magma and unbreakable, multi-use items.
Perhaps the only thing that will survive is the Cuchen, because she talks to us. On second thought, maybe also the cast iron pan, the Bialetti moka espresso pot and the Laguiole flatware. These days, Andrew’s daily afternoon coffee is coming from a French press, so I guess that will come too.
Once we get to Florida, we’ll reassess and buy what we need from a local restaurant supply store , along with whatever items Bill and his wife found useful.
During our first trip to check out s/v Rachel J Slocum, I couldn’t retain all the information about the galley. Bill’s wife showed me how she had stored and used each of the hatches, but I didn’t bother with measuring out the space. I suppose I was less invested in kitchen and dining products than I am with clothes.
So once again, I will turn to examples from cruisers who are willing to share their insights such as:
- Sailing Totem –Migrating Kitchen to Galley , Galley Essentials
- Out Chasing Stars – What’s in my Galley
- The Boat Galley – Real-Life Galley Storage
- Sailing Project Atticus – Living Off Grid on a Budget – this episode dives into fresh water storage, rain collection, food storage, cooking, and our galley setup, etc.
- Sailing Chance – best drinkware
- Lin and Larry Pardey – Care and Feeding of Sailing Crew
- Beth Leonard – The Voyager’s Handbook – once again helps us to select what are “must have” versus “nice to have”
As for provisions aboard RJ Slocum, there are two deep pantry drawers measuring 12″ width x 31″ depth x 12.5″ height, for about 5.3 cubic feet of space. We will tackle this subject in more detail in our upcoming post on Canned Food Recipes where we explore culinary adventures in pantry meals, thus embracing all things sea foodie.