Saturday, November 25, 2017


We all love to eat, and most boaters love to entertain as well. I've discovered some really simple recipes over the years that everyone seems to love, so I thought I would share them. I especially like yummy recipes that require no cooking and feed a crowd since we go to a lot of pot-luck diners as cruisers. I love pot-lucks! 

I also want to introduce our new sailing friends to something found in all good Louisiana kitchens, Tony Chachere's Creole Seasoning. Tony's is the perfect blend of cajun seasoning already mixed and ready to use. 

If you can't find Tony's in your area, you can order it from the states, or mix your own blend of something similar. I found this copycat recipe on-line:

COMBINE 1/4 cup fine sea salt, 1 teaspoon cornstarch, 5 teaspoons cayenne pepper, 5 teaspoons garlic salt, 4 teaspoons ground black pepper, 1 tablespoon chili powder, 2 1/2 teaspoons celery salt, 2 teaspoons ground mustard, 1 1/2 teaspoons ground basil, 1 1/2 teaspoons ground sage, 1 teaspoon onion salt, 1/2 teaspoon ground oregano, 1/2 teaspoon ground thyme.
SEAL in a resealable, air-tight container and SHAKE until thoroughly blended. STORE in a cool, dry place away from light and moisture. 


2 packages Pepperidge Farm Chessman Cookies
6-8 bananas, sliced
2 cups milk
1-5 oz box Instant Vanilla Pudding
1-8 oz Cream Cheese, softened
1-14 oz Condensed Milk
1-12 oz Cool Whip, thawed

Line the bottom of a 9X13 dish with cookies, then layer sliced bananas on top. Combine milk and pudding mix, blending well using an electric mixer. In another bowl, combine cream cheese and condensed milk, mixing until smooth. Fold the whipped topping into the cream cheese mixture, then add to the pudding mixture, stirring just until blended. Pour over cookies and bananas. Arrange remaining cookies over the top and refrigerate several hours before serving.


1 can black beans, drained
1 can blackeye peas, drained
1 can sweet corn, drained
1 can kidney beans, drained
1 small can chopped chilis (optional)
1 can Rotel Tomatoes (use salsa if you can't find Rotel)
1/2 bunch fresh cilantro, chopped
1 fresh tomato, chopped
1 onion, chopped
1 green bell pepper, chopped
Salt, Pepper, Tabasco and Tony's to taste
Tortilla Chips

3/4 C Olive Oil
1/4 C Red Wine Vinegar

Mix the dressing and set aside. Combine all of the canned vegetables and chopped fresh vegetables, then add dressing. Season to taste and serve with chips.

Recently, I had leftovers, so I mixed some cooked rice in with the beans, heated some flatbread, and sliced some fresh avocado for a quick meal. 

1/3 C oil
3 T flour
1 large onion, chopped
1 large green bell pepper, chopped
1 lb shrimp, small count, deveined, remove shells
Parsley flakes
1 large can diced tomatoes
1 large can sweet corn
1 C water
Tony Chachere's Creole Seasoning to taste

Mix flour and oil together, heating over medium heat. Add onions and cook for 10 minutes. Add bell pepper and cook for another 5 minutes. Add tomatoes, corn, water and seasonings and simmer for 1 hour. Add shrimp and simmer for 10 minutes.

I normally double this recipe and put some in the freezer!


Mix equal parts honey, apple cider vinegar, olive oil and honey Dijon mustard. Keeps a couple of weeks in the refrigerator.


1 package Tri-colored spiral noodles, cooked
1 baked chicken, meat taken off the bone and chopped
1 bottle Italian dressing
Salt and pepper to taste (Or Tony Chachere's)

Add your favorite veggies, like chopped broccoli, cherry tomatoes or chopped tomatoes, black olives, chopped or dried parsley, chopped bell pepper, chopped purple onion, chopped cauliflower, chopped carrots. The more you add, the better! Season to your taste. Enjoy!


1 small head shredded cabbage
1 large carrot, grated
1/2 C chopped almonds (can substitute cashews, sunflower seeds, etc)
1/3 C dried cranberries (or raisins)
1/3 C olive oil
1/4 C red wine vinegar or apple cider vinegar
2 1/2 T sugar
1/4 C mayonnaise (optional)
Salt and pepper to taste

Combine oil, vinegar, sugar and mayonnaise first, then pour over cabbage, carrots, nuts and cranberries. Mix well.


1/4 C honey
1/4 C soy sauce
1/3 C onion, minced
2 T grated ginger
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 T dried parsley
1 (3 lb) whole chicken
Oil or cooking spray
Salt and Pepper to taste

Combine first 6 ingredients and marinade chicken for 1-3 hours in the refrigerator, turning occasionally. Coat the roasting pan with oil. Place chicken, breast side up, in pan and pour marinade over chicken. Bake, covered with foil, at 375 degrees F for 45 minutes. Uncover and bake another 45 minutes.

                                  HOMEMADE GRANOLA 

4 cups old-fashioned raw oatmeal
1 cup chopped almonds
1 cup chopped pecans or walnuts
1/2 cup raisins
1/2 cup coconut flakes
1/4 cup chia seeds (optional)
1 t cinnamon
1/4 t salt
1 t vanilla extract
1 T water
1/2 cup honey
1/2 cup coconut oil

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Pour oats, nuts, raisins, coconut, chia seeds, cinnamon and salt into large mixing bowl.
In another bowl mix oil, honey, water and vanilla well.
Combine the two and mix until dry ingredients are well coated.
Spread on an ungreased cookie sheet in a thin layer. Bake 7 minutes, stir, bake another 7 minutes, stir, bake another 7 minutes (21 minutes total).
Let granola dry before storing in an air tight container.


1 lb small or medium-size shrimp ( I prefer precooked, already cleaned)
1 T grated fresh ginger
4 garlic cloves, minced
2 t olive oil
4 cups chicken broth (I use bouillon cubes)
1 can unsweetened coconut milk
2 1/2 T fish sauce
1 T light brown sugar
1 T fresh lime juice
2 t red curry paste
1 package sliced fresh mushrooms
1 med red bell pepper, chopped
1/4 C chopped fresh basil
1/4 C chopped fresh cilantro
1/4 C sliced green onions
1 Thai Chile pepper, seeded and minced (optional)

Peel shrimp and devein if needed. Saute ginger and garlic in hot oil in a large pot over medium heat for 1-2 minutes. Add broth and next 5 ingredients. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat. Add mushrooms and bell pepper, cooking and stirring for 5 minutes, then add shrimp for only a few minutes, just until shrimp turns pink. Remove from heat. Add remaining ingredients and serve hot. Serves 4-6 people.

CHANGE IT UP: Substitute frozen snapper fillets in place of the shrimp and serve over rice.


1 - 8 ounce cream cheese, softened
1 can sweetened condensed milk
1/3 cup lime juice (can substitute lemon juice)
Graham crackers or another type of cookie
Raspberries or blueberries (optional)

Mix together cream cheese, condensed milk and lime juice until smooth. Crush cookies and put a thin layer in the bottom of small decorative ramekins for individual desert servings. Pour filling over cookie crumbs and chill for a few hours. Fresh raspberries or blueberries on top make this desert extra special. Makes 6-8 servings.

Garnished with Pirouette Chocolate Hazelnut Wafers - YUMMY!

Saturday, October 28, 2017


Two crazy girls at once?
Sharon (24) and Rebekah (27) come ready to play! 

So, what's there to do in Bonaire anyway???
Windsurfing in Jibe City

Lac Bay is known as one of the best places to windsurf
with warm, knee-deep water,
sunshine all year, and steady trade winds 

Hanging in Loc Bay with Zim and Kim on Someday and Rick and Brenda on Amara

Panorama of Loc Bay. Spectacular!!!
Girls heading out for lessons

Snorkeling every day!!!

So many new sea creatures to observe

Making a new friend at the Donkey Sanctuary

Some donkeys are friendly, and some are not!

This guy likes Uncle Ricky

Ice Cream before lunch??? Why not.

Looks a lot like Texas on the west side of Bonaire

Girls love to explore
Marca Indian Inscriptions

Tiny houses used as sleeping quarters for slaves working in the salt mines 
Salt getting ready for export

If there's a rock, Sharon will climb it!
Sea spray coming off the rocky east coast

Girls climbing to the top of the
Klein Curacao lighthouse
And then there's sailing!!!
And shopping...

Cactus used as fencing around properties to
 keep out wild goats and donkeys
Flamingos digging for shrimp in the salt ponds

Church on the hill in Rincon

Dinner aboard Ad Astra with
Kate, Kyle, Max and Eric
We played Google Feud
Brenda on Amara also prepared healthy snacks for us
The Last Supper
The Gouverneur

We splurged on deserts!
Farewell, Curacao!

Thursday, October 26, 2017


Painting by local artist Den Spotlait

BON BINI MEANS WELCOME in Papiamentu, and you see these 
words all over the large Dutch island of Curacao, located between Bonaire and Aruba. 
Papiamentu is a Creole language based on Portuguese, Spanish, Dutch and several 
African dialects. It's been spoken in the ABC islands for 300 years. Another phrase often seen is 
MI DUSHI and means My Love or My Sweetheart or just sweet

On the east end of Curacao is the colonial-style capital of Willemstad. Many of the ornate buildings were built in the 1700's, and are painted bright colors, creating a beautiful backdrop to the busy downtown port area. Most of Curacao's 130,000 residents live close to Willemstad, while the west side of the island is dry and desert-like. Curacao is less than 50 miles from Venezuela, and has an oil refinery, Isla, that produces 320,000 barrels of oil per day, operated by the Venezuelan state company PDVSA

Our favorite restaurant in downtown Curacao - The Gouverneur

Delicious Cuban Banana Soup
I ordered fried fish at a local restaurant and was served the entire Snapper,
                           much to my surprise! It was wonderful, served with sides of salad,
                                              fried plantains and black beans in rice.

Many of our friends were worried about us during Irma and the other storms that took their toll on our favorite Caribbean islands. In fact, we were in St. Martin 10 days before Irma arrived. Ricky met a guy who mentioned he was leaving to sail to Bonaire, and we decided it was time to go south and out of the hurricane belt. We hauled our boat out in Curacao and scheduled a trip home to visit family and friends, but Irma was going over Miami and our flight was delayed over and over again. We couldn't stay on our boat, as it was already out of the water, so we checked in to Lions Dive & Beach Resort. Our two-night stay turned into nine nights. Finally we were able to fly home, but our unplanned mini vacation was pretty special. The restaurants on the premises are all amazing, and the grounds are spotless. We recommend it highly to friends looking for a new place to vacation, especially divers.

Having a romantic dinner at Hemingway's,
an eclectic restaurant right on the beach

KLEIN CURACAO, or Little Curacao, is a small island located near Curacao. Day-trip boats bring loads of tourists over to explore the rocky, windswept island that maintains one of the oldest abandoned lighthouses in the world. The 66' high tower and red brick buildings were rebuilt in 1877 after a hurricane destroyed the first one built in 1850. The newer building sits in the very middle of the island, and has received some recent tender-loving-care, mainly a new roof. The two keeper's houses have been gutted, but you can still walk up the narrow staircase for fantastic views. In 1888, Germany established a naval base here, but storms finally forced them to leave. We enjoyed snorkeling, and saw a pod of 16 dolphins and several sea turtles.

We were the only sailboat in the anchorage - a rare treat!
A Plumed Scorpionfish, camouflaged to blend in perfectly with the sea grass and algae 
A Flame Box Crab being shadowed by a flounder

A strange looking jelly fish found washed up on the shore that I can't identify