There’s levels of realism. What would it be like if I (Matthew Martin) was poor enough to qualify for food stamps. I’d approach it like a college educated, lefty food snob would approach it. But with less money.
Or I could imagine, what would it be like if I were that poor, and I was the sort of person who was that poor, working at minimum wage, drop out, alcohol and tobacco addictions that get in the way of food shopping, and maybe a taste for salty, junky, fast foods. I’m not going to threaten my health. And those sort of people aren’t going to read my blog anyhow. So I’m going to imagine I’m me, and I’m imaging what it would be like to have to eat on such a small budget– $4 or so per head.
So here are my constraints:
Food inventories will be ran down to minimal levels leading into the experiment so as not to waste existing stocks of food.
Laborious cooking is restricted to Sunday.
Food on other days is restricted to quick to make or left overs.
Cooking is restricted to the equipment you can get for cheap at walmart or a thrift store– a low speed blender, frying pan, rice cooker, etc.
Has to be healthy. Got a nursing mom in the house.
$5.80 per head per day.
I’m not going off caffeine, but I won’t use my espresso machine. I can use my mokka pot if I want ’cause those are cheap. I’ll probably do 2 bags worth of tea, since that is about 20 cents.
Spices from the spice rack are okay if they are cheap spices- parsley, garlic, etc, without buying them specifically for the experiment. No cardamom.
No corn syrup, white bread, white flour, hydrogenated oils. And just to make it really hard, everything has to be organic. And since the urban poor tend to live far from a store with organic food, I’ll take public transit to the other side of town to get it (instead of walking up the street to my coop)
And maybe I’ll work out some more of the details tomorrow.