Belladonna Bess

An edible garden in Wellington, NZ

Live below the line take two September 22, 2013

Filed under: Cooking,Living below the line — belladonnabess @ 11:03 pm

After surviving the Live Below the Line challenge last year, for some reason it seemed like a good idea to do it again.

The problem is, the best bit of doing the challenge last year – being part of an awesome team – wasn’t going to happen this year. With my team unavailable, I’m doing the challenge solo. At least I had all my budget details from last year, so it wasn’t so hard to put together a budget and do the shopping. I had a few ideas on things I did or didn’t need from last year, so there are a few differences, but it is mainly the same.

Live below the line 2013

below the line pantry

The big difference is that I didn’t have anyone to split my oil and butter purchases with, so I ended up buying a whole bottle of oil. To save money and to try something different, I decided to do without porridge for breakfast this year. Instead, I decided to try some traditional Indian breakfasts. That made sense when I thought of the idea, since my strategy for surviving this challenge is to look beyond New Zealand, and copy what people eat in countries like India. Unfortunately, that didn’t work quite so well…

Breakfast: carrot rava upma, effectively a semolina porridge with grated carrot. While the flavour was good and I love semolina, somehow I couldn’t handle the combination. Nor could I quickly swallow a cup of budget instant coffee before leaving home at 6.40am. Not a great start.carrot rava upma edited

Morning tea: carrot rava upma and budget instant coffee. It tasted much better around 10am, when I was awake and hungry.

Lunch: rice cooked with onions and tomato. I ate this last year, and very tasty it was too.

Dinner: I had a brainwave about the breakfast I didn’t particularly like. I thickened it with flour and fried it in oil on the tava. Anything’s better fried! I also made chapati and a couple of paratha. I ate the paratha and have saved the chapati for breakfast and morning tea tomorrow. I also cooked some plain rice and what turned out to be a rather nice dal made with tinned tomatoes and yellow split peas.

fried rava upmadal and paratha


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