David B Galley Notes – Cheese and Chocolate

This week Jeffrey and I have been learning new tricks and testing out fun recipes for next year. On Saturday we took a one-day class on cheese making. It was a great introduction and we both left with a feeling of excitement about making feta and paneer, queso blanco, cottage cheese and cultured butter on the boat. These cheeses are fairly straight forward and can be made in a day or two. We hope that over time we can start to learn how to make blue cheeses in the winter months and have them for trips the following year.


For Valentine’s Day we could not resist making Chocolate Truffles. I learned make to truffles last year in a 3 month long pastry course I took. It required making up a ganache with chocolate, cream, vanilla and butter. Once the chocolate ganache was the right consistency we made the truffle insides and then the hard part came when we tempered the chocolate, which means melting the chocolate to the right temperature and then cooling down it down another temperature and then raising the temperature back to a third temperature and holding. The object to tempering is so that the fat crystals in the chocolate’s cocoa butter are finely crystalized. This creates a chocolate that is not cloudy, but has a nice shine, and when it is broken it has a good snap. We had a lot of fun with our truffles which numbered some where around 60, so we carefully bagged them up and delivered them to a number of our neighbors. I am thinking I will be adding these truffles to the dessert menu on some of our longer trips.


David B Galley Notes – New Sample Menu on Website

Notes from the Galley

Spring flowers bloom early in our part of the Pacific Northwest. Today the first crocus in our yard bloomed a bright purple against the green-grey backdrop of a Northwest Winter. Soon the hummingbirds will arrive just-in-time for the bright blossoms of the Red-Flowering Current and the skies will clear to a brilliant blue. Soon the David B will be back on the water exploring the the nooks and crannies of the San Juan Islands and Alaska. All that exploration can make a person hungry, so I have been working on a new website page to to showcase the types of meals you might have aboard the David B.

You might notice that I have included Bison as a menu item. I have been experimenting with bison this winter and have really enjoyed its beef-like flavor. Bison has fewer calories, less fat and more protein than beef. I have found a number of ranchers that only pasture feed their bison on grass – the way bison have always grazed. I look forward to serving bison as a healthier alternative to beef.


The ship’s position page on our site

Time: 1030 Position 48 45.35N 122 30.26W

Have you seen our new position and tracking page? It shows the current position of the ship and will show tracks of the trips that we have gone on:


You can even look at it in a satellite image. It’s very cool

The cylinder heads come off

Time 0821 Position 48 45.35N 122.30.26W

On Monday we decided to remove the cylinder heads on the main engine to have them worked on. This included removing everthing bolted onto the top of them, and then lifting them up through the pilot house. That part was easy, because we had the assistance of Drew’s Victoria Star lifting frame. Then came the difficult part of getting them off the boat. We used the boom, and lots of lines strung all over the place and lifted them up and put them on the dock.

Here are Jack Mynatt and Aaron guiding the first one to the dock./

More Winter Work

Time 0844 Position 48 45.35N 122.30.26W

More winter work. Now we’re working on the main engine — The Washington-Estep 3-cylinder diesel. These are the exhaust and intake valves that were recently rebuilt by Old Tacoma Marine. For those of you who are interested in such things, these valves are in cages that slide into the top of the cylinder head so that they can be replaced without the head coming off./

David B–the man himself

Time: 2148 Position 48 45.25N 122 30.26W

DavidWe’ve finally found some information about David W. Branch, the man for whom the David B was named. He was, as we had been told a superintendant for Libby, McNeil & Libby and worked for them some 44 years. This newspaper picture is from his retirement announcement. More pictures soon.

A great connection to some past history of the B

Time: 1226 Position: 48 45.25N 122 30.26W I just go a call the other night from the woman who truly saved the David B. The story as she told it goes like this:

In 1952 the owner of the David B left it sitting alongside of one of their buildings, on a set of marine ways in Bristol Bay, AK. The following spring the boat was no longer necessary for it’s former duty, because the fishing regulations changed. It went unused until 1980 or so, when Patricia and her (now husband) Vern decided to try to save it. She corked and filled the seams, painted the bottom, and then set about dragging the B back to the water. The water’s edge was quite a ways away because in the almost 30 years that had passed, the river had changed course. They used rollers, jacks, a truck with a winch and finally a D8 caterpiller tractor to move it far enough down the beach that it would float at high tide.

After it floated, they hired a barge to take it to Seattle, where 18 years later we came into the story. It was amazing talking to her. I learned a lot and got the history (finally) from the actual source.

/More pictures are possibly coming soon

Whisky Golf–The Never ending Sourdough

Time: 0851 Position: 48 45.25N 122 30.26W

Whisky Golf, the sour dough starter that came alive in the Canadian Military Exercise area WG lives on. Over the winter Christine brings it out for a day or two, feeds it, makes a loaf of bread or two, and sends it back to the fridge. A couple of days ago she made some whole-wheat, sourdough rolls for a dinner with a friend, and today a sourdough, cheddar-jalapeno twist bread

Doesn’t that make you want to come visit? (And sail with us?)


More snow, more projects…

Time: 0845 Position: 48 45.25N 122 30.26W

Just a few more thoughts about the projects… I really love to make the improvements that require the cognative work as well as the physical. For example, how does one build a system to skim the oil from the surface of the bilge water, thats effective at skimming and cost effective? Or how about creating a power generation system that is stable and requires little or no monitoring?

Here’s another picture of the snow that’s still hanging around.