I've decided to challenge myself to 'live below the line' surviving on five pounds for five days. I'll be donating the money I save on food towards a charity helping to prevent hunger and starvation across the world.
I and many others in this country regularly eat at the height of luxury, with varied and exciting ingredients in every meal. I want to strip back and pare down to the survival basics as I believe that I deserve no better than anyone else in this world - everyone deserves food and by cutting back on my own budget, I can help to feed others too.
I say stripping back, but as a food lover and blogger I have already managed to design a five day menu of delicious foods for the grand total of £4.74. That's a whole 26p unnacounted for - perhaps I'll treat myself in the reduced section. As well as helping charity, this project proves how easy it is to save money on food whilst eating well, which is perfect for students and anyone struggling with the cost of living.
It would be easy to buy a block of cheese, a tin of beans and a sack of potatoes, but I feel that my menu is more exciting, more healthy and generally more satisfying. While designing this it made me realise how much I actually spend on food, which is not even a lot comparatively, but I now realise how unneccessary it is to have every mouthful at the taste of perfection. When stripped back, food is fuel and its primary function is to feed. I'm happy to be able to do that with the added bonus of the taste. So please enjoy my menu and use it either for money saving reasons or for your own five day challenge!
(Please note these prices are portion-based, e.g 75p for 500g of oats at 5x 30g portion)
Sweet Potato 0.35
Chana Dal 0.45
Wholemeal Pittas 0.32
Tinned Mushrooms 0.39
Red Onion 0.34
Tinned Mackerel 0.59
Tinned Tomatoes 0.39
Herbs & Spices 0.20
Baked Sweet Potato & Cabbage Dal & Pitta
Dal 3 Egg Omelette with Mushroom & Red Onion
Scrambled Egg Pitta Sweet Potato in Tomato Sauce with Pitta
Cabbage & Sweet Potato Wedges Mackerel Dal & Boiled Egg
Baked Egg & Red Onion Shakshuka
There you have it, it's possible! A nutritionally balanced five day meal plan for under a pound a day. I challenge you to try it, and donate the money you save to a good cause! I know a lot of people spend at least five pounds a day just on lunch, and here exemplifies the reasons not to. I've set a target of £220, which is probably the cost of two families weekly shops, please help to stop hunger across the world by donating, whether you scrimp on your shopping list or have the money spare, no one deserves to starve.