Thursday, July 21, 2011

Living on a Food Stamp Budget Day 21

I begin my day with 4.39


I have been getting some e-mail accusing me of starving myself. There are readers who think I am getting far too few calories. My daily average since I began is 1,814 per day. While I have lost a bit of weight I am not at an unhealthy weight and after yesterday's pizza binge feel as if I could take on the world.

I began my day with coffee, nectarine and a little yogurt.
Coffee .25
Yogurt .20
1/2 Nectarine .25
Total .70

For lunch I had the rest of the meat/rice mix with some chard and snowpeas from the garden stirred in along with two poached eggs.
.82

One of my neighbors saw me when I went out and rushed over to bring me some rice Idli batter she had made. She knew I had gotten a shot in my knee because of some pretty serious joint pain and she made some Idli with hot chilis, turmeric, and garlic to help heal me.

I know that Idli is typically steamed but I don't have a steamer for it. I have had the leftover fried so I prepared it like a pancake. Wow was it good. I made two cakes and had them with a couple of pats of butter, so now feel stuffed.

Idli is essentially a batter made from ground lentil, rice and baking soda. Water and seasonings are added and the resulting 'bread' is delicious. I feel like I need a nap.
Butter .15
Second Coffee .25
ldli


The above is a link to a recipe for those of you who want to make it. It is a very inexpensive dish made in the south of India. I remember feasting on them when I was at an Indian wedding.

One thing I have noticed in eating less is that when I get hungry, it is real hunger, not appetite. 

When hungry I tend to make poorer food choices. I have lettuce in the garden that I can go out, harvest, wash, dry and dress and I could begin my meal with a nice salad. Since I did not plan ahead to prepare my ravenous appetite has me making a pasta and skipping the salad entirely.

People often ask why those on food assistance don't eat more fruits and vegetables. Cost is one factor, but the need for quick gratification might be another. When HUNGRY it is difficult to take the time to prepare what might be a more healthful meal.

That smoked Kielbasa  I bought at the beginning of the month for the split pea soup made it's return as I used a serrated knife to slice through a link. I ground two tomatoes in the food processor, sauteed the sausage threw in the tomato and some seasoning and in 20 minutes I was eating spaghetti with sausage. While the chef in me knows this is not a traditional Italian sauce, the eater in me knows how good it is.
Sausage .99
Pasta .19
Tomatoes .40

I must admit that some of my eating is surprising to me. I am craving meat like never before. Prior to this I ate many more fruits and vegetables and often went without meat for some pretty long periods of time. Now I crave it like never before. Eating less has turned on something primal in me.

...And the eating continued as I had a big bowl of popcorn with salt and butter. I got the organic popcorn and it is more expensive per serving.

Popcorn .11
Butter .30

Calories 1,638
Cost 3.91

I did great with B12 but everything else from A to Calcium was lacking.

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

Can you help out with some things to do with cabbage?

I have two sons and they eat a lot but not so many vegetables because they cost so much.

Cabbage is always cheap, but I don't know what to do with it.

Elaine said...

Karl wrote: "People often ask why those on food assistance don't eat more fruits and vegetables. Cost is one factor, but the need for quick gratification might be another. When HUNGRY it is difficult to take the time to prepare what might be a more healthful meal."

That might be profound. Or not, but I think it is.

Elaine said...

Anonymous -

Shred it (and add shredded carrots and whatever else) and make a slaw. Dress it with oil & vinegar or oil & lemon or whatever you like.

Quarter it, boil it, and serve with butter.

Quarter, boil with fresh tomatoes.

Make soup. Use whatever you've got. It'll be good.

Shred it and gratinee.

Use the internet and find some recipes.

Karl Wilder, Chef said...

I love cabbage but hate it boiled.

However I will do a few things with cabbage including one dish with a spicy peanut sauce I will share.

Elaine is right that there are many recipes on the net, but I may have a few not commonly found.

Anonymous said...

I agree with Elaine. I think it is profound and explains a lot about why people make the choices they do when poor.

What I do not understand is how many poor people are obese. If you are striving to get enough calories on this budget how do they manage to get so many more?