Marine News from the Great Lakes

RECIPE: The Ham Grindstone Grinder

Published: Monday, August 20, 2018

My name is Nicole Hartshorn, THE RIVER GAL. I am a wife, mother of two small children, and author of River Entertaining — Food and Drink Ideas for Boaters in the Thousand Islands.

My husband, Captain Tom, our two children (the skippers), and I are avid boaters on the St. Lawrence River. For those of you who are not familiar with The River, I would describe it as upstate NY’s best-kept secret. It is a simple boater’s paradise to some and a veritable fountain of youth to others. Either way you look at it, The River casts a mystic spell on the people that frequent its waters, or so it seems. With endless nooks, beautiful sandy beaches, and over 1800 islands to explore, The River will have you hooked. The way I see it, The River is not only in our lives, but is our way of life!

My family and I spend our summers aboard our 330 Sundancer, named “Our Wedding.” Over the years, I feel I have somewhat perfected the art of simplicity. Having a family of four — and don’t forget the big dog — living in a 33’x11’ space for months at a time, you end up learning how to simplify things… for your sanity.

This is why I have collected very easy food and drink ideas for entertaining on a boat, with minimal ingredients and minimal preparation, thereby allowing you to spend more time with your mates.

I would like to invite you aboard to join us for some of our adventures and have some laughs along the way. Nothing complements the laughter of family and new friends like great food and drinks so let’s get cooking!


Named after our family’s favorite Island: Grindstone

Time and kids mean we have ended up accumulating A LOT of stuff on our boat, mostly water toys for the kids. While my kids play with their sand toys, squirt guns, and remote-controlled boats, my husband’s favorite water toy to play with is our Sea Doo. He claims he likes it for the speed, but I’m pretty sure he likes it for the solitude it gives him. Coincidently, he only seems to want to ride it when the kids are fighting. Knowing that The River provides endless exploration, I plan on Captain Tom being “out at sea” for a good portion of the day so I usually pack him a “grab n go” lunch to take with him.

This issue’s recipe has a tropical twist to a simple American classic, the Ham Sandwich!

Stock Your Galley With:
  • Your favorite kind of sub roll
  • ¼ lb of Honey Ham from your local deli
  • 3 slices of Mozzarella cheese
  • 3 pineapple rings (I use canned pineapple. With two small kids aboard, who has time for the real deal? Or a shower for that matter...)
  • Shredded lettuce
  • Honey mustard

Cut open your sub roll lengthwise and spread a thin layer of honey mustard on each side. Layer your honey ham, mozzarella cheese, pineapple rings, and lettuce.

Wrapping the sandwich up in foil will make a good “grab n go” lunch for that family member who’s out playing with their toys!

The River Gal

Interested in trying more of my recipes or know a boater who would be?  Give me a shout at: [email protected] Search for River Entertaining / Nicole Hartshorn at or at, or find it at Barnes & Noble,,  to buy your copy. (Prices may vary depending on the distributor)

This article first appeared in the Summer Issue (Jul/Aug) 2018 of Great Lakes Scuttlebutt magazine.

tags: Recipes

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