12 April 2023

Urchin’s Meals & Favourite Recipes

Prior to Urchin setting sail, a detailed meal list is planned to ensure the boat is sufficiently victualled.

We ensure that at night, a warm comforting square meal can be enjoyed by all. These meals are cooked on land, frozen and then placed into two freezers on board. These meals comprise dishes such as stews, cottage pie, curries, and the like and simply need to be defrosted and warmed. The only cooking to be done would be prepare a choice of quinoa, couscous, rice, pasta, potatoes, sweet potatoes, butternut or the like.

In the first few days, there are fresh vegetables and some salads, and fruit on board. Sea state permitting, we try to bake delicious bread daily.

Breakfasts and lunches are simple, and are decided upon by guests and crew, who have a choice of a variety of provisions. Each guest is expected to decide for him or herself. What they wish to have for breakfast. We do have a yoghurt maker on board!

During the day it’s not unusual to hear someone say “I’m peckish, so I’m going to make something for myself. Would anyone like anything? It is easy going, and we all chip in to create that “homely” family feeling.

There are always plenty of snacks, and even though it sounds unlikely, one actually doesn’t eat that much on board. Honestly. And that’s why it is important that the evening meal is a good nutritious easy to create bowl of warm food.

That being said – each guest is expected to assist with the preparation of meals and partake in the cleaning up process (in turns that is). When a dish, or cup or spoon is used, it must be washed, dried, and packed away. The galley needs to always be neat and clean. A clean, tidy boat equals happy guests and crew.

Previous voyages have revealed that guests often do want to cook something spectacular, or they want to bake a different type of bread. And the most amazingly creative edibles have been made these voyages, using whatever substitute ingredients are able found in the galley. (Remember – popping down to the local grocer or corner café is not an option, but improvisation and creativity is. One simply must scour the lockers and bilges for interesting alternative ingredients.) However, there is a boat rule attached to this: should someone create a dish, or bake a deliciousness, then that recipe must be recorded in Urchin’s recipe book. No exceptions!

The 2023 voyage from Cape Town to Saint Helena Island resulted in exactly the above. A delicious new (and extremely simple) savoury bread recipe introduced by one of the crew. So scrumptious, it didn’t last for an afternoon! The Captain (Stuart) turned to the Captain of the Watch (Charlie, his wife) and said: if you can recreate this, I will keep you “long-time”. Everyone laughed hysterically, as although Charlie makes the most divine chocolates and other confectionery, her baking prowess is essentially non-existent. In fact her muffins and other attempts could be mistaken for cultural weapons! Charlie rose to the challenge and baked the bread. New via the grapevine is the loaf lasted less than an afternoon!

And so, we have a new favourite recipe on board. One that is easy, and the best part of the recipe is that the ingredients can be varied as often as the wind changes.

It is now called: Keep You Long Time Bread. And here is the recipe:


  • 3 to 3/4 x cups of self-raising flour
  • 2 x Tablespoons of baking powder
  • (If using plain flour) add 5 x Tablespoons of baking powder)
  • 2 x teaspoons of salt
  • 2 x Tablespoons of sugar
  • 1 x generous cup of grated cheese (and a little more for sprinkling on the top)
  • 1 x chopped onion (optional) – and if used, keep some for the sprinkling on the top
  • 1/2 x packet of white onion soup
  • Add your choice of extras such
    • (i) a tin of dry sweetcorn; or
    • (ii) oats; or (iii) creamed sweetcorn; or
    • (v) sesame seeds / mixed seeds / chia seeds / nuts etc. To taste.
  • Milk (enough to create a sticky mixture – usually 3 cups but that depends on what you have added (e.g., if you add creamed sweetcorn the mixture will already be a little sticky, so add less milk).


  • Mix all ingredients well with a wooden spoon so that the mixture is sticky.
  • Pour the mixture into the bread loaf tin.
  • Let it stand in the sun or a warm place for 5 -10 mins
  • Heat the oven to 180-190 degrees Celsius for 5 mins.
  • Bake at 180 – 190 for 1 hour BUT check the consistency at 50 mins to establish whether the inside is still sticky.
  • Sprinkle the balance of the cheese (and optional onion or seeds) on top of the bread
  • Place back in oven for the last 5 to 10 mins.
  • Take the bread out of the oven, turn it over and plop it onto the top of stove, then turn it over and let it cool.


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April 2023
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