Hard Times? Tips to survive and thrive
by Louise Newton
When money is really tight it is MOST important that your meals should be something everybody will look forward to. This CAN be done with ALMOST no money; just look at the DELICIOUS food eaten by the poorest of people in areas that have a TRADITION of good cooking.
TWO THINGS ARE PRESSING WHEN MONEY IS LOW:
1-- You must fill your family up.
2-- You must give your family the best nutrition possible.
Chinese do it with rice. Italians use polenta and pasta. Middle East cooks lentils, the US Carolinas serve "Hoppin John" and New Englanders eat Kedegree.
These cusines are all based on starches with additions of whatever is available.
FOUR MAIN STARCHES:
Potatoes are so expensive in comparison to these four, they are considered a Vegetable by the author.
You SHOULD always have beans, rice, cornmeal, and grits, as well as flour in your kitchen.
Is the MOST expensive thing needed for GOOD nutrition.
1 quart of milk a day provides 1/2 the protien you need, and powdered milk is better than whole milk.
Other dairy products such as cheese and eggs vary and suppliment milk-- 1-- 1 egg equals 2/3 glass of milk (about 6 ounces) Eggs are the next best buy to milk. Can also be combined with other inexpensive ingredients to make delicious meals.
2-- 1 ounce cheese equals 1 glass (8 ounce) of milk and costs just a little more
Cheese does this also combines with inexpensive ingredients, but to a lesser degree.
RULE OF THUMB:
Milk, cheese and eggs should be included because they provide 2/3's of our daily requirement of protien, the rest can be gotten for the 4 basic starches above.
MEAT-- Add as much as your budget allows. Not only does it taste good, but it is an excellent source of other important requirements. Fish is also a great substitute for meat.
FRUITS AND VEGETABLES--
Must be included because they provide vitamins and minerals.
The BEST thing is to eat as WELL balanced a diet as possible.
When money is really tight, meals should be build around starches, adding first the protien you need to compliment them, adding other things as you can.
Good Food Budgeting requires thinking and planning ahead.
SPICES, SEASONINGS AND HERBS--
Need to be on hand all the time. If your income is variable buy them when you have the money.
If steady allot so much a week for their purchase. Grow as many herbs as possible--many can be grown in winter indoors.
STAPLES IN LARGE QUANTITIES--
10 pounds of rice will take a chunk from your budget but it will make 20 meals for 4 people, even though you wouldn't want to serve them all in one week. But if you buy 10 pound of rice one week, 10 pounds of flour the next, and 10 pounds of cornmeal the next, and so forth, you will be able to afford them and you will always have them on hand in your pantry.
Careful stockpiling will turn groceries into satisfying meals.
Eventhough most of your money will go for starches and protiens a gradual collecting of seasonings is just as important.
VEGETABLES AND FRUITS:
Some should be included every week.
1--Only buy what you can afford.
2--Only buy what will add the most to your basic meals.
Fresh is best
Frozen is next
Canned is last
Fresh depends on the season for economy.
Frozen is available year round, but is more expensive.
Canned is less expensive than frozen but is more expensive than fresh in season.
I buy canned only for creamed corn and beets, because they are not available frozen
and only fresh in season, unless you can them.
Cabbage and carrots are available and are real standbys. These could be the backbone for many winter lunches or suppers.
Also tend to appear frequently--
Fresh in season, canned in the winter. Canning doesn't destroy the Vitamin C, but long cooking does. Tomatoes main virtue is what they do for other dishes.
Add tomatoes to polenta and it is almost a whole meal. Add cheese and it becomes a well balanced, nourishing lunch or supper for four. --- [Source: Frugal Village]
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Note: Real "liberation" for women can exist only where every worker is paid a living wage (capable of sustaining affordable housing, food, and family), where women may freely enter any decent profession, not where they are hounded into the workplace by vicious social engineering. CEO pay today (like 'entertainers' also) shifts what should provide just wages for all workers (not equal but just) only upwards and thus is obscene, anti-family and therefore anti-human. Justice matters in economics, and any economic system that undermines the family, the basic unit of every tribe and nation and our very future, is not just.