I got inspired to write this after reading a NPR post on Facebook about going through your pantry and donating all the canned foods there were about to reach their expiration date.

This event was last Summer. I often take the boat over to Parks Bay on Shaw Island for the afternoon. Sometimes I'll anchor and spend the night. On this occasion I wasn't planning on staying the night. There are a couple spots I like to anchor. One is a little bite in the northern shoreline, just big enough for the Saratogan. Another spot a bit to the West gives me a complete sunset.

The afternoon went on, I read one of my nautical books. Looked to be the makings for a spectacular sunset, so I wanted to stay another couple hours. However I was getting hungry. I knew there wasn't a lot of food aboard, but I started looking anyway. I found some Ramen and down in the bilge under the galley I found a can of pork and beans. The beans had more appeal,so it was going to be beans for dinner. Then I looked at the expiration date stamped into the end of the can: July 1978!

Wow, these beans must have been in the bilge when I bought the boat 25 years earlier. Well, long story, short, I still had my pallet set on beans, so I opened the can.......they looked okay.....they smelled okay......into the pan they went. It was a warm afternoon, so I didn't want to start the diesel galley stove. So I pulled out my hot plate and hooked it up to my little $69 inverter and 15 minutes later the beans were a boilin'.

I let them boil a few extra minutes....just in case, then poured them into my bowl. Looked okay, smelled okay. At this point I was having second thoughts about how smart this was! But I was really hungry, now and those beans did smell good. So in went the spoon and Dang, these are good beans! I had a second, second thought about how smart this was but down the hatch they went. Some of the best beans I've ever eaten!

As you can see the beans were okay as I'm still here writing this six months later. About the only thing unusual about this nautical culinary event was that I started farting after the first spoonful. Kept on farting for the next four hours. But I have to admit they were great vintage farts.
A beautiful evening sunset on a vintage boat eating vintage beans. The soft cacophony of bean gas wafting on the gentle breezes. Life doesn't get any sweeter than that!