I came across Alie and Ben through social media sites and after enjoying their posts I asked her if she’d share her onboard experiences of galley life.

I have been sailing for one year almost exactly while Ben has been sailing on and off for the last five years with Kiana, a 1989 Sceptre 41. Although we didn’t name her, I did some research into her name. In Hawaiian it means “divine” and is said to be a calming name, and her Persian roots say that Kiana means “element of nature”. I like to think she is a divine and calming element of nature. Ben started sailing on the Great Lakes in Ontario and after learning to surf has made a dream of combining the two ocean sports. Early in our relationship Ben chartered a boat with the goal of making me fall in love with sailing. It was my first time sailing and I remember screaming at the top of my lungs when we jibed — I thought the boat was going to tip over. 

Kiana’s galley layout is a U shape, with double sink, top loader fridge freezer combo and a three-burner propane stove/oven that we recently replaced. It’s the shiniest I’ve ever seen. Our galley priorities are counter space and a big fridge/freezer. I find freezing as much as we can lets us cruise longer without having to provision as often. I also love how the sink faces the salon so that the person doing dishes can still see and be included with those in the living space. If I could change one thing it would be the access to the fridge/pantry. It’s so deep and having only access from the top means that sometimes you lose stuff way down in the bottom that you only find again when a smell reminds you to go diving for that container of leftovers you made three weeks ago.

I don’t think our diet has changed much at sea, although we value fresh produce a lot more. Canned veggies will never match a crunchy piece of lettuce. When sailing we eat less meals and more snacks. Singlehanding our boat is possible but it’s easier to have two people, so sacrificing a human to the kitchen is less than ideal. It’s not uncommon for us not to eat a single meal all day, but instead to munch on veggies and dip, cheese, hummus and crackers, more cheese, apples, bananas, peanut butter, and cheese again. When we provision, we really try and take that this into consideration. 


Mixed salad greens

Broccoli florets chopped

1/3 cup of almonds

2 tablespoons Feta or goat cheese

Raspberries or other berries to top


½ cup balsamic vinegar

¼ cup maple syrup

2 teaspoons Dijon mustard

1 cup extra-virgin olive oil

Combine salad ingredients in a bowl. Combine dressing ingredients in a jar, put the lid on and shake then drizzle onto salad.


Fish fillets

Vegetable or peanut oil for frying

Italian style breadcrumbs

Sprinkle of cayenne

Salt and pepper to taste

1 large egg – beaten

In a deep pot, heat 1 inch of oil to 375° degrees. Meanwhile, in a shallow bowl, combine breadcrumbs, cayenne, salt and pepper. Dip each fillet in egg then breadcrumbs mix, then back to the egg and again in the breadcrumbs. Make sure to cover the fish completely with both mixtures each time. Deep fry the fish, a few pieces at a time, in the hot oil until golden brown 2-3 minutes. Do not overcrowd the pan or the fish will not crisp properly. Carefully remove each fillet from the oil and let rest on paper towel to drain. Once cooked serve on soft taco wraps with coleslaw, garlic aioli, hot sauce, and avocado. 


Pasta of your choice

2 medium sized crabs – cleaned and cooked

3 tablespoons butter

3 cloves garlic – minced

3 tablespoon all-purpose flour or more depending on how thick you want it

1 cup milk or cream

1 cup chicken broth

1 ½ cups Parmesan plus extra for garnish

Freshly ground black pepper

Juice of ½ lemon

In a large pot of salted boiling water, cook pasta according to package directions until al dente. Drain and return to pot. In a large skillet over medium heat, melt butter. Add garlic and cook until fragrant, 1 minute, then add flour and stir until golden. Add milk/cream and chicken broth; simmer until thick; 3 minutes. Add Parmesan and let melt; 2 minutes. Season with salt, and pepper. Add crab meat and toss until coated, then add linguine and toss until fully combined. Garnish with Parmesan and squeeze of lemon juice.


Rockfish, Ling Cod, or any kind of white fish cut into cubes

Juice from 6 limes

1 cucumber – finely chopped

2 yellow bell peppers – diced

2 tomatoes – finely chopped

1 red onion – finely chopped

2 jalapeños – seeded and finely chopped

1 cup olive oil

Bunch of cilantro – chopped

Salt and pepper

2 avocados

In a bowl combine fish and lime juice. Let sit for 4 hours or until cured. In a large bowl, combine cucumber, bell pepper, tomatoes, onion, and jalapeños and toss to combine. Drain the fish and add it to the veggies bowl. Stir gently until the ingredients are mixed. Carefully fold in oil, cilantro and season to taste. Serve with Tostitos and avocado.


I’m borderline obsessed with the idea of harvesting from the ocean and foraging. So when we read in the cruising guide that there are wild chanterelles in the area or I manage to catch a crab I generally reach for a book that has recipes made from what you can find in the PNW. My favorite cookbook is the one my mom bought me called The Salmon Sisters. It’s a mixture of life at sea hacks, fishing hacks, and recipes for those who live on or around the water. I highly recommend it to anyone who wants to cook using what they catch, clean or forage. I honestly don’t really enjoy cooking on land but there’s something about the self-sufficiency of catching/foraging and cooking your own food that has me spending hours in the galley. It feels like putting a plate of poached self-caught salmon with lemon and dill, and a side of garlic wild chanterelles in front of your friends and family is a gift of your labor, and it leaves me feeling proud and independent.