Monday, June 1, 2009

The Galley Chef Salad

Your legs are used to the constant shifting, your stomach is lifted, dropped, lifted, dropped. The motion is gentle. You lean back on your heels and allow your toes to lift then forward to the balls of your feet. Your feet are constantly being massaged by warm planks of wood, cradled by the swells of the ocean. When you close your eyes, you feel the kiss of the sun reflected from all directions by the giant, expansive mirror beneath you. You are here to find yourself in it. 

You swing down the galley hatch into the cool, damp quarters below and brew yourself a pot of coffee (your thinking pot). The radio dances to the tune of you. Vibrant vegetables jump in their swinging nets, begging to be freed. Bottles of vinegar rattle in their gates. A sweet, orange pepper cuts loose and rolls your way and without a thought your right hand reaches out to catch it. Salsa. 
The next hour is a whirlwind of rinsing, chopping, dicing, frying, seasoning, tasting, laughing and..ducking.. as you whirl around your 4 ft galley (everything in arms reach), while crew members come and go with various dramas to share from the world on deck. Every so often a cabinet flings open and some salt or pepper flings free and you have to herd it back to its corral. 
You can't believe you get paid for this. 
Your smile is audible. 

The dressing: 
1 Tbsp lime juice 
2 cloved minced garlic
1/2 Tbsp lemon juice
2 Tbsp vegetable oil
1/4 tsp salt

Whisk together and add 
1/2 head chopped romaine (the bottom crunchy half)
1/2 orange bell pepper diced
1/2 cup chopped cilantro

Top with salsa made from: 
1/4 pkg frozen corn (rinse to thaw)
2 green onions
1 chopped tomato
1/4 yellow onion
2 tsp lime juice
salt and dried chipoltle pepper

Top this with 1/2 cup black beans cooked with 1/4 yellow onion and 1 clove minced garlic
you can use canned beans or soaked beans, depending on how far you planned in advance. If using soaked beans make sure you cook them first, then when they are ready to eat heat them again with the garlic and onion. 

Garnish with sour cream or greek yogurt and tostada chips: 
To make tostada chips, cut a flour tortilla into squares and toast in hot vegetable oil. If you are on a moving ship, be extremely careful and keep the pan in your hand at all times (even if the stove is gimbled... unless you are in the Doldrums)

Christina's vote: "I needed a siesta after this salad"


  1. I think I got seasick from the first paragraph :(

  2. greek yogurt IS a good replacement for sour cream... and a poor replacement for yogurt... in my opinion. i wish i'd read this recipe before trying to choke down a container of greek yogurt.