Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Living on a Food Stamp budget day 6

Eating on a food stamp budget is not easy. I began the day with a cup of cabbage soup. It has a lot of vitamin C, some protein and B vitamins. Who says you can't eat soup in the morning? This was followed by peanut butter,crackers and coffee.

Cabbage soup .24
Peanut butter .21
1 oz of whole wheat crackers .25
Coffee .25

Total .95

I made an absolute favorite for lunch. I admit to scaling down the recipe a bit but there was no loss of flavor.

Spaghetti Carbonara.

2 oz pasta .19
1 slice American bacon .16
One egg .20
1 ounce Parmesan cheese .37
Garden vegetables .10

Total 1.02

This is an easy preparation. Mix egg with cheese in bowl and season with black pepper.

Chop vegetables into a colander I used sugar snaps and green onions. Fry the bacon reserving the fat.

If you are worried about scrambled eggs you can put a touch of the pasta water in the egg to temper it. Pour the cooked pasta into the colander over the vegetables warming them. Toss in the bacon fat, turn the heat off of the skillet and gently toss the egg and cheese over the pasta.

It makes a very filling lunch.

After I went to the gym I was hungry but I decided to ignore it and headed out for cat food. At the grocery was one of those food demos and this lady had black bean taquitos. I tasted a small bite and she asked me how I liked it. I told the truth;"It was gummy and gross".

"I know they are awful this way. I was supposed to have an electric skillet but they sent over a microwave and they are really gross in the microwave. Here's a coupon, take some home and fry them and you will see how good they are."

I looked at the coupon before stuffing it into my pocket and it was not the typical cents off. It was one FREE package. No way I am turning down free food.

So I brought them home and fried them in a little oil turning them 'til all sides were crisp and she was right. They were not bad at all. I ate 3 and it was a nice post gym snack.

Taquitos 0.00

I am going to have to start looking at coupons more carefully.

Pork belly is often a good deal. It can be found at Spanish and Asian butchers. I prefer butchers because they cut to order and give you the amount you want. 2.49 a pound. Done.

I made an absolute favorite food last night. Braised pork belly with scallion and rice. Very calorie dense and very filling.

I prepared it with ginger, hot peppers, a little 5 spice and some backyard scallions.

The belly was .62 for 4 ounces
Ginger .22
Hot peppers .12
Rice .10
Iced tea .03

Total 1.09

2,068 calories for the day and fairly nutritious. 3.06 with .60 to carry over to tomorrow. I learned very quickly that it takes little to consume those extra pennies.

I got an e mail asking me what I would be eating if I had not taken this pledge. I would eat a lot more fruit. The fruits I like tend not to be cheap.


lynn said...

I see a lot of bloggers doing food stamp challenges. What I find interesting is I never see a family of 5 doing a food stamp challenge with a family of 5 food stamp budget. As a family of 5 we qualified for $308 of food a month for 6 months not too long ago. Had we had less income we could have qualified for almost $800 of food stamps a month! That seems like way more than most families even rich ones would spend on one month of food when you have a 5 year old, 3 year old, and a breastfeeding baby like we have! On just the $308 we had more money to spend on food than we ever normally do. For us food stamps put our grocery budget to a luxury level for a while. (I was even able to make a few trips to whole foods for my FAVORITE food- young coconuts!)

I think its great people show how you can eat healthy on a shoe string budget even if its a little bit more prep work and a little less tasty. A lot of families are eating on a bigger budget on food stamps than your average non-food stamp family though.

Anonymous said...

Here in RI it's better to claim separately than it is to claim together.

For example, two people claiming separately get $400 in total.

And if we had kids, the number would go up towards the $800 mark.