Alaskan Adventure - Family, Food, and Exploring

Alaskan Adventure - Family, Food, and Exploring

Vacations are nice. My vacation was very nice! I traveled to Alaska via a cruise ship with my extended family. We ate a lot. A whole lot! We went for a long walk in Ice Straight Point. Then we ate. We went whale watching in Juneau. We ate some more. We saw a lumberjack show in Ketchikan. Any idea what we did upon returning to the ship? Yep, dinner was served. My favorite meal was breakfast. After some trial and error, I found some favorite items to eat each morning at the Asian buffet. Curries, korma, dal, and hard-boiled eggs in sweet and sour sauce. Bread was also available at every meal, often times a multitude of bread choices. Did it taste fresh and delicious? Not particularly. Did I eat it anyways? Heck yeah! I was tempted to offer my baking services on board but decided against it since it was my vacation and I didn't want to stay up all night in the kitchen. Besides, I needed plenty of rest before my daily routine of 3 enormous 2+ hour meals and the mandatory snacks in between.

This was an eggplant dish that I thoroughly enjoyed. The bread was a great vessel. I had to take a picture as it appears this "animal" had an eye gouged out!

Looking back at this trip, we all had some laughs about our kids' reactions to eating aboard the ship. The 2 youngest (1.5 years old) did quite well in general, eating just about anything offered by their parents. The 3 year-old (mine) was probably the hardest to feed. Her diet consisted mostly of french fries, cucumbers, cantaloupe, bread, and vanilla ice cream. Luckily, she was distracted by her cousins, grandparents, aunts and uncles. My boys (10 and 8) lived off of red meat. I don't serve red meat super often at home so they had at it. Hamburgers, hot dogs, steaks. Repeat. It was vacation so I didn't interfere with their meat-fest. At least they balanced it out with plenty of ice cream and gelato.



Rachel balanced out her diet with a candied apple

One of the biggest lessons that I learned during this extraordinary trip was how much I missed my own cooking and baking. While it's really nice to have others preparing and serving you food, they can't always make it meet your needs. Some foods we ate were under seasoned and bland. Some fish and meats were overcooked and dry. Some dishes arrived differently than they were advertised. Don't get me wrong. I enjoyed indulging for a week in lots of scrumptious meals, desserts, snacks and treats. The adult drinks were flowing (sometimes overflowing) and it was SO fun experiencing all of it with our close family. But every time I sat at the table, I kept thinking about how I would make the dish differently or simply bake better breads. I didn't waste any time when I arrived at home, baking some fabulous sourdough baguettes and experimenting with some new pastry flavors.


Praline pastry

Here are a few highlights from Alaska:

Hubbard Glacier

A beautiful view of Juneau after a tram ride

All 19 of us!

Yep, we got close to humpback whales