Cruisers say their plans are written in sand . . . at low tide. You never know what a day may bring. We’ve learned to be prepared for anything!
One winter, problems with our engine led to a partial rebuild. Once complete, we did some short day trips and then decided to do a two-day trip to get more break-in time. From Boot Key Harbor in Marathon, we decided to go about 20 miles to Newfound Harbor, spend the night on the hook, and then return to Boot Key Harbor.
The trip to Newfound Harbor went beautifully, and we spent several hours exploring the area by dinghy. Back on the boat, we enjoyed happy hour on the back deck as we watched a gorgeous sunset. Pretty much a perfect cruising day!
Our phone rang, and it was a friend from St. Louis who was arriving in Key West the next day for a week’s vacation. How about getting together? Sure we said, we’d be back in Marathon the next afternoon and could drive down the following day.
After we hung up, it hit us. We were halfway to Key West, the weather was beautiful, and we had food and fuel. Why not go by boat? And thus a planned two-day trip turned into five.
Whenever we leave the harbor, I make sure we have food for a few extra days just in case our plans change. I almost always keep the ingredients for a number of coleslaw variations on hand – cabbage lasts almost forever even without refrigeration, those with vinegar and oil dressings hold up well even if served out in the heat (good for potlucks), and the crunch of the cabbage and other ingredients is always welcome.
Orange Cranberry Coleslaw
- 1 3 ounce package ramen noodles, oriental flavor (not cooked; use seasoning packet in dressing)
- 4 cups chopped cabbage
- 1 11 ounce can mandarin oranges, drained
- ½ cup dried cranberries
- ½ cup lightly salted roasted cashews
- 3 tablespoons cup thinly sliced green onion tops, divided
- 1/3 cup canola or olive oil
- 1/3 cup balsamic or red wine vinegar
- 2 teaspoons sugar
- Oriental seasoning packet from ramen noodles
- Crumble ramen noodles. I find it easiest to do by leaving the package intact and squeezing with my hands; you can also put the block of dry noodles into a zip-top plastic bag and roll with a rolling pin or tap lightly with a hammer. Remove the seasoning packet from the package and place noodles in a medium bowl.
- Add cabbage, mandarin oranges, cranberries, cashews and two tablespoons of the sliced green onions. Toss gently to mix, taking care not to break the oranges apart.
- Thoroughly mix the dressing ingredients in a cup or small bowl. Pour over the salad mixture and gently toss until all salad is covered with dressing.
- Garnish with remaining green onion slices.