Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Culinary Adventure

The biggest surprise of my first cruise was how extraordinary the food was.  Being a total foodie, having high standards for freshness, striving to use the highest quality ingredients and favoring whole foods, you could say I am “picky.”  I expected cheap cafeteria and diner type food that was soggy, greasy and, uber-processed.  I expected the apples to be mealy and the green beans frozen and microwaved.  I admit to bringing my own homemade granola, a bag of AZ oranges and organic apples for survival.

 I was skeptical when I read the first dinner menu; they made it all sound so excellent.  But excellent it was!

Pan-Fried Barramundi
Giant Perch with Green Asparagus, Brown Butter, Lemon and Rice Pilaf

Cajun Spiced Crawfish Crockpot with Black Mussels and Tomatoes
Creole Rice

Moroccan Vegetable Ragout with Pita Bread and Read Oak Leaf Salad
Cauliflower, Carrots, Bell Pepper, Zucchini, Pea Pods and Potatoes in Tomato-Yogurt Sauce.

How on earth was I going to choose?  Oh, how I wished my stomach was stretched out more that night because I could have had all three, if I had room.  Each night they had a completely different selection of about 4 appetizers, 4 soups and salads and 6 main courses.  They also offered 2 pastas (one that was the same every night) and 7 alternative choices that were the same every night.

Yes, my stomach stretched and accumulated some extra “padding”, but a week of culinary adventure drove me to set good judgment aside and enjoy the ride.

Breakfast was the trickiest.  I started off having a lot of poached eggs.  Scrambled eggs are often made with powdered eggs, so I stuck with what I could see was real. I don’t do homogenized dairy, non fat yogurt, cold cereal or sugary pastries.  A couple mornings at the buffet I stacked an egg on a small waffle with a slice of smoked salmon.  By the last few days I was eating my (dry) granola and a couple oranges.  I was fine with eating light in the morning, because dinner was always over the top.


Doesn’t that salad look amazing?  It was!  I also tried borscht for the first time, which was not bad and had a very tasty blueberry roulade (yes, dessert at every lunch, shame.)

Finally, here is what I learned at the dinner table;
  • I don’t like pate of any kind (seafood, meat or vegetable.)
  • Frog legs have the texture of chicken and the flavor of crab legs
  • Escargots is delicious (but likely anything doused with lots of garlic butter would be.)
  • Caviar is worth eating again if I get the chance, but not worth the hefty price tag.
  • Soufflé’s make great desserts after a hefty meal, they are light and not too sweet.
  • It only takes sharing three meals with someone before I feel comfortable asking them for the vegetables off their plate.
  • Thankfully, the bread was awful.
  • Jarom can eat a lot of meat L
  • Spending 2 hours at the dinner table never tired.
  • Six days of stomach stretching allowed me to enjoy a soup, salad, pasta, entrée and 2 plates of lobster in one sitting.
  • Although I was over eating every day, I felt good and never had digestive problems.
  • I love seafood.


  1. How fun for you! I wonder if every cruise is this way? We will go on one soon, and it would be nice if the food was this good!

  2. Clearly I need to switch cruise lines!!

    Thank you for sharing! It all looked super yummy and your pictures are amazing! I found you via Balancing Beauty and Bedlam.

    Thanks for linking up! It was fun to visit your blog!!

  3. It was my first cruise, so I can't say for sure. From talking to people on the ship and friends that have cruised, Carnival is the only one who's food isn't too hot. We were on Princess and had such an awesome experience in all areas, which will weigh heavily when we book our next one!

  4. yum! i am impressed that the food was up to your standards, that is awesome. makes me want to go on a cruise! someday when we go on a cruise, i'll keep the Princess line in mind.

  5. so glad you enjoyed your cruise.
    we were on royal carribean. and i have to say it was really great too.
    we enjoyed the food, but i have to admit that after about 5 days, i was ready for normal food again. it got to be a little fancy, and sometimes rich.
    in fact---the coolest thing about the food on our cruise was that at every port, they would stop and get food from that port, like real local italian produce---fruit, and in Greece, they got real greek olives, and stuff. we loved that they used the real food from the region.

  6. I LOVE that. Kinda glad we didn't pick up any food in Mexico, but Greece and Italy would be amazing! I will definitely be open to Royal Caribbean next time.


It's rude to eat and run. Humor me with conversation please!

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