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Vegetarian live aboard
Hi Mark, I agreed with everything Jeff said. We''re also long-term vegetarians who decided not to put up with the additional cost/hassle of mechanical refrig. We found almost exactly the same things that Jeff is ssaying, right down to our total cost (we''re also in the Annapolis area) A couple more thoughts if you''re "practicing" in your present land-based kitchen.
When we gave up the house and moved aboard, we found the biggest issues to be storage space, limited power, storage space, breakable things, storage space, spoilage, storage space, corrosion, and storage space.
While bulk food purchases of whole grains, beans are cheap, they may give you problems if you try to store them long-term. The humid boat environment allows those lovely little weevils and other critters to hatch in your flour. And you probably don''t have the space to store large quantities anyway. If you''re going to try, Break your big purchases into smaller portions to store so if one goes bad you don''t affect the whole lot. Nothing in cardboard; transfer it to plastic cannisters or ziplocs. If you have access to a freezer or a hard winter, hard freeze for about a week kills the eggs. The tropical solution is to put bay leaves in with the package (I don''t think this is 100% effective, tho) We take advantage of advances in packaging and buy a lot of individual-servings of things, as are made for school lunches or whatever. Also very small cans, NOT the large economy size unless you''re feeding a crowd. Seems more expensive at first but not if half of a big can goes bad before you can use it. And even if not, you end up eating very old food.
Even if you''re going to be living in a marina so that power availability isn''t an issue, think hard about your small electric kitchen gadgets (storage space, counter space, susceptibility to corrosion or breakage). Think simple, think flexible. You don''t want anything that doesn''t earn its storage space by being able to do many jobs reliably. We replaced a food processer with a set of good knives, and when anyone asks me if I have a bread machine, I hold up both hands and wiggle my fingers.
I''m surrently writing an article for a new-age-y magazine about the unexpected benefits of having to simplify our kitchen when we moved aboard (think "The Zen of Veggie Chopping" and you get the idea.) It''s really meant for people living on land, but you might be able to invert some of the ideas to use in your situation. I''ll email you a link when it''s published, if you''d like.