Cruising Tips: Six Essential Galley Gadgets

Simplify your life on-board cooking experience with these clever tips from Bill Cullen
Author:
Updated:
Original:

1 Flame Tamer

We find that our gas stove burners can’t go low enough to simmer sauces or slow-cooking items like rice without burning them. Until we started using the Flame Tamer (the generic term is “heat diffuser”), we usually burned our rice and singed our sauces. This round metal plate with a wooden handle reduces the heat under your pot. You can buy one at a hardware or kitchen supple store for about $10.

Flame-Tamer

2 Lingerie Bags

These small mesh bags are typically used for ladies to put their under-things in when before they get washed. They are sturdy, with a zipper, and have about a two-gallon capacity. I use them to organize the fridge. I put salad stuff in one, meat and cheese in another, fruits and veggies in third. When it comes time to cook, I quickly reach in and grab everything I need. Things don’t get lost, and I don’t get yelled at for keeping the fridge lid open too long.

3 Dish Pegs

While sailing heeled over, we couldn’t open our dish cabinet wihout them all sliding out. We installed 4in pegs in the cabinet shelf to hold them in and keep pots and pans from falling out. The pegs are easily removed and can be configured in any way by drilling more holes into the shelf.

dish-peg-2

4 Soda Stream

We use this amazing machine to make diet coke and tonic water on our boat. The cost of buying soda in some places will certainly give you pause, and to bring enough sodas for a long cruise is a real burden. In addition, we find the biggest benefit is that we don’t generate trash from cans. Less cost, less to store, less trash. What’s not to like?

5 Ziplocs & Ice Pick

Some folks don’t mind ice cube trays, or don’t mind not having ice all the time, but on our boat, we’ve found a better way. Each night, we fill a small Ziploc bag half full with water and put it in the freezer. The next morning, we have ice. We leave it in the bag, put the bag on the cutting board and stab it with the ice pick to create cubes and shavings. The leftover ice stays in the bag and goes back in the freezer for the next round of cocktails.

6 Spray Bottle

Want to save water when rinsing the dishes? We use a spray bottle to spray off our clean dishes instead of running them under the tap again. It works well and uses a fraction of the water.

Spritz-dishes-1

What creative solutions have you devised to simplify the cooking in your galley? Let us know! sailmail@sailmagazine.com

BillCullen-bio

Bill "the Gadget Guy" Cullen sails his Catalina 350, Triumph, in Tampa, FL. He has been sailing for 50 years as a delivery skipper, yacht broker and racer and shares the lessons he’s learned in his seminars on gadgets, cooking and anchoring.

Related

Waypoint.image.cd

Say No To Waypoints

Ever since they first appeared in my navigational toolbox decades ago I have been wary of waypoints. They certainly do seem helpful, these electronic flags we plant in the ether to guide us to where we want to go. But I noticed early on they also tend to distort our perception. ...read more

Lead-shutterstock_429247

A Cruise up Florida’s St. Johns River

The chart showed 45ft of vertical clearance, and I knew the boat should be able to pass under the bridge. Still, there was that nagging voice in my head that wouldn’t let me be. “What if your air draft calculations were wrong?” it said. “And if you’re just a little too high the ...read more

pic00

Installing a Helm Pod

Our 1987 Pearson project boat came with an elderly but functioning Raymarine chartplotter, located belowdecks at the nav station. Since I usually sail solo or doublehanded, it was of little use down there—it needed to be near the helm. When I decided to update the plotter along ...read more

Panamerican

Pan American Game Success

Team USA’s young sailors went to the quadrennial Pan-American Games in Lima, Peru this summer with high hopes, and returned with a good haul of medals—two Golds, three Silvers, and two Bronze. Gold medals went to Ernesto Rodriguez and Hallie Schiffman (Mixed Snipe) and Riley ...read more

190916-AC75

U.S. Team Launches First America’s Cup Boat

Fast forward to around 2:25 to see the boat in action. First day out and already doing full-foiling gybes: not too shabby! Hard on the heels of the unveiling of New Zealand’s first AC75, the New York Yacht Club’s American Magic team has now launched its first America’s Cup ...read more

GGTobCaysHorseshoeColors

Picking a Charter Destination

Picking a destination should reflect the interests of your group, says People often ask about my favorite charter destination, and invariably, I sidestep the question with one of my own: “Well, what do you want to do on your vacation?” Most often I hear an incredulous, “Why, ...read more

sinking

Waterlines: Chasing Leaks on Boats

Chasing leaks on boats is a time-honored obsession. Rule number one in all galaxies of the nautical universe through all of nautical history has always been the same: keep the water on the outside. When water somehow finds its way inside and you don’t know where it’s coming ...read more

BestBoatNominees2020-Promo

Best Boats Nominees 2020

Bring on the monohulls! In a world increasingly given over to multihull sailing, SAIL magazine’s “Best Boats” class of 2020 brings with it a strong new group of keelboats, including everything from luxury cruisers nipping at the heels of their mega-yacht brethren to a number of ...read more