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eating out on a cruise and other traif places

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We are planning on taking a cruise and are trying to figure out different eating options. I was hoping that I could get some ideas from this group. When we went before we had then double wrap salmon. We had baked potatoes that are cooked in a special potato only oven. We had rice from a rice cooker. We were tempted by the french fries since that too was the only thing cooked and the oil was kosher. A friend told me that they had eggs cooked in tin foil but that were not any good. Steamed vegetables would be nice but are likely problematic. Lettuce, tomato salads would work too. Bagels, lox , cottage cheese, cream cheese and tuna are all kosher.

I am interested in getting recipe/eating ideas - things like baked scrambled eggs, pasta etc.

thanks.

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  1. I had friends who brought a small skillet and spatula from home and had the chef prepare eggs for them. They didn't use any vegetables or cheese, just had him crack fresh eggs into the pan.

    When I cruised with my family several years ago, the waiter offered different types of fish to be triple wrapped in foil. He also offered sweet potatoes, and fingerlings, as an option to regular baked potatoes.

    Whatever else you choose to eat is up to you. Really it depends on what you'll eat that's not prepared in a kosher kitchen. Seems like you have a lot of options- especially for breakfast.

    3 Replies
    1. re: cheesecake17

      I was told the fish on the foil is not ok because a Jew has to light the flame or participate in the cooking process for it to be kosher.
      any input?

      1. re: paulajs

        You need to talk to your Rabbi about issues this nuanced.

        1. re: paulajs

          You were told correctly, but it's easily solved: just ask to put it in the oven yourself.

      2. Not the answer you're looking for, but since the point of a cruise is effortlessness (not having to pack/unpack between destinations, ready access to meals) why not consider the Kosher options? They offer Kosher food packages for a variety of cruise offerings.

        1. From what I've heard from friends and relatives who've gone on non-Kosher cruises, breakfast is never a problem; cereal, fruit, yogurt. For the other meals, the cruiseline they were on had packaged meals...you know, airline food. And they said it wasn't bad. They were on one of the Alaska cruises - not sure if all the lines offer Kosher packaged meals. Call them to check!

          1 Reply
          1. re: DebbyT

            I think all the major lines offer the frozen meals, and most will try to accommodate you so that you can have some non-packaged food.

          2. A number of organizations sponsor kosher cruises. You can eat real food instead of frozen meals.

            1 Reply
            1. re: chuck

              Yes, for twice the price of a non-kosher cruise.

            2. I never understood how it would be worth it to someone to go on a cruise and eat airline food when others around you are stuffing their faces. Isn't one of the main draws of the cruise, the constant eating?

              1. I have looked in to the Kosher options for cruises quite extensively and woud like to offer my help.

                As stated below, practically all, but not all, cruise lines will be glad to serve frozen "airline" meals, but this has to be ordered in advance. You of course can take anything additional from the buffets as you desire.
                If you speak to the purser or chef at the beginning of the cruise, most will try to expand the menu by going the "tin foil" route.

                Kosher cruise runs by Kosherica, Suite Life or Lasko allow you to eat normally with lavish meals throughout the day but the price is up to 3 times as expensive and there are no last minute deals.
                As to last minute deals on regular cruises, it might be difficult to order Kosher frozen meals as the lines usually want 30 days notice.

                I do not wish to get into a discussion on the levels of Kashrut, but for the strictly observant, your comment that, "Bagels, lox, cottage cheese, cream cheese and tuna are all kosher", is simply not correct. All these items can be Kosher or not Kosher and recognized certification is needed to make it Kosher. Blanket assumptions are wrong and misleading.

                In any case I hope that you have a pleasant and "filling" trip.

                1 Reply
                1. re: sja

                  See this link, I wrote a long response on a similar question here.

                  http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/585422

                  I loved our cruise, the hassle was entirely worth it and we saved a bunch of money overall.

                  One day, I'll hopefully be able to afford the kosher cruise, but until then we enjoyed ourselves and did lots of great excursions!

                2. I am the OP so thank you for the suggestions especially about bringing a skillet. I am thinking maybe a small pot so we can have boiled eggs for egg salad sandwiches. In response the question about the koshrut of the bagels, lox etc. we had the waiter bring us the packaging with the hechkshers.

                  The ships are all loaded in the US at the start of the cruise with standard American fare.

                  We are ordering the airline food but unfortunately, but from previous experience, eating them gets old very quickly.

                  Any other eating ideas would be great.

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: gsquaredb

                    The difference with the pot and the skillet is that the eggs are made right in front of you... the pot is usually brought back into the kitchen. But if you're cool with that, but all means go ahead.

                    On the cruise I went on, the soft serve ice cream was kohsher... Our waiter went out of his way to look for things that we could eat.

                    1. re: gsquaredb

                      Your clarification about the bagels, etc. was exactly the point that I was trying to make. You acted correctly and asked to see the packaging and then ate. That is the correct way of doing it. Don't assume that something is Kosher, check it out. The staff will never refuse to show you the packaging.