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View Diary: Hunger in America: Living on $25 a Week (26 comments)

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  •  Dave in Northridge: I can't help with a kitchen (5+ / 0-)

    but I can help with alternative cookery.

    If you live somewhere with electricity and you have or can borrow an iron -- the kind for pressing clothes -- you have a heat source on which you can cook food. Not four-person quantities quickly, and you do need a roll of foil from which to make packets for frying / steaming  the food. You'll need a metal cup or other vessel to heat water in too. But an iron is essentially just an oddly-shaped hot plate. Turn it upside down, and brace it with a brick or a foil-wrapped book on either side. If you can also get a small hot pot or coffee maker, you can increase your capacity and variety of foods exponentially.
    (warning: this one wants a microwave and slow-cooker as well as an iron)

    You will still have to choose foods not dependent on refrigeration.
    You may be surprised to find what this can include -- hard cheeses, for example, as well as the staples -- raisins, nuts, powdered milk or eggs. Noddy's excellent suggestions above, though, can be expanded a tad if you have a way to heat water -- you can have grits or Malt-O-Meal, for example, instead of oatmeal all the time. You can also have soup -- and you don't have to buy premixed soups or cans, or even rely on ramen. Rice, beans, lentils, couscous, pasta (I like the Moderno brand -- it's pretty inexpensive and makes manageably small quantities)...

    If you don't have access to electricity, you need $3.
    You must have enough money for a packet of matches or a small lighter and a bottle of alcohol, and a cheap utility knife (where I live, the knife can be had at the dollar store or Harbor Freight for 99 cents; it's more like $2.99 at the 7-Eleven).
    All the other components for a pop-can stove come free -- 3 or four empty pop cans and some patience.
    The alcohol is your fuel -- you can use HEET from the 7-11. You mark two cans and cut them, then fit the cut pieces together to make the stove; you can make a fireproof stand for the stove so you can use it under a cooking vessel and a windbreak to go around it from the other cans.

    You can even contrive a one-person-size oven to work with such a stove ... and that will expand your cooking horizons too.

    I think we have defaulted away from the skills that sustained our grandparents and their grandparents a lot.

    LBJ, Lady Bird, Anne Richards, Barbara Jordan, Sully Sullenberger, Ike, Drew Brees, Molly Ivins --Texas is no Bush league! -7.50,-5.59

    by BlackSheep1 on Fri Jan 18, 2013 at 03:00:19 PM PST

    [ Parent ]

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