September 27, 2009

Chickpeas and Potato curry and HC update...

Monday & Tuesday - are the only two days I was able to survive myself for the Hunger Challenge week...then came my birthday on Wednesday and it was impossible for me to further continue as the birthday cake itself was more than $10. I should have realized that before I took up this daunting task ..but well, atleast I had a chance to participate for two days which made me realize how difficult it is to sustain oneself on a $4 food stamp per day.

..I made this 'Chickpea and Potato Curry' on Tuesday for the Hunger Challenge.

Chickpeas and Potato Curry (Aloo Chole)


1/2 can of chickpeas, drained & washed [$0.86]
1 potato, peeled, cubed [$0.99]
1/2 tomato,chopped [$0.56]
1/2 tsp oil
salt to taste
1/2 tsp cumin seeds
1/8 tsp turmeric
1 tsp garam masala
1/2 tsp chilli powder
1 cup water

How to make:

Heat oil in a saucepan, add cumin seeds and let them splutter. Add chopped tomato and cook until mush. Mix cubed potato into it and cook until tender. Mix chickpeas, turmeric, salt, garam masala, chilli powder to the potato mixture. Add water and let the curry cook for 8-10 mins on medium-low. It can be served with rice or any kind of bread.

Here are my advanced Dussehra wishes [September 28th 2009] to you all ..:). May Goddess Durga bless one and all.

Image courtesy

~ Siri

September 21, 2009

Hunger Challenge Week: Sept 20th - 26th 2009 - Couscous Avocado Salad

I know, I have been missing from my blog for quite sometime due to some personal commitments which took all of my free time. In the meantime, I shifted to a new place and that means - packing, unpacking and settling myself was one helluva job in itself.

...though I was blog-hopping all this while, a little motivation - was the only thing required for me to get back! ...and Amy's post on Hunger Challenge gave me that push.

Some Hunger Facts, in USA -

    * In San Francisco, 150,000 people are unsure where their next meal is coming from.
    * 1 in 4 San Francisco children lack regular access to the food they need to learn, grow and have  a healthy start in life.
    * 1 in 5 San Francisco adults cannot count on the daily meals they need to lead healthy, productive lives.
    * 1 in 4 San Francisco seniors lack the nourishment needed to control chronic health problems.
    * For every $1 donated, San Francisco Food Bank can distribute $9 worth of groceries.
    * San Francisco Food Bank distributed over 33.5 million pounds of food in the past year - nearly 8% more than the year before.
    * Half of the food that San Francisco Food Bank distributes is fresh produce – more than 16 million pounds of it last year.
    * More than 35 million people in our country are on food stamps - up 3 million just since January.
    * About 40% of families now on food stamps have “earned income” – up from just 25% two years ago.
    * 60% of the clients San Francisco Food Bank served last year come from working households.
    * In California, the average food stamp recipient gets $4 a day to spend on groceries.
    * In California, a single person is can get food stamps only if their yearly gross income is $14,079 or less.
    * 5.3 million Californians are living below the federal poverty line ($21,834 for a family of four).
    * The number of households participating in San Francisco Food Bank’s grocery pantry program is up 24% over last year.

...$4 is approximately 200 Rupees in India and there are so many unfortunate people who earn less than 100 Rupees a day and have to feed a whole family on it. Hunger, in any part of the world is a dreadful experience and hope by creating awareness through this Hunger Challenge, I could be of some help - in my own little way.

Hunger Challenge Rules:

1. Spend just $4 a day or $28 a week (per person) for your entire food and drink budget. This is the average amount that food stamp recipients have to spend on food.

2. The $28 limit includes any food and drink consumed inside or outside of your home, as well as any staples or condiments you have on hand (salt, pepper and tap water are considered “free”).

3. Do not accept any free food from family, friends or at work (that means coffee, too!).

4. If you have a garden, please price-out any produce you source from your garden based on supermarket or farmers market prices in your area and include that cost in your $28 total.

It will be just me who is gonna take part in this week's Hunger Challenge and I will try my best to post my progress everyday here, on my blog!

Some useful links:

Hunger Challenge Recipes

Blog posts on Hunger Challenge 2008

Hunger Challenge posts from SuperChef

Hunger Challenge posts from Sig

50 items at Whole Foods for under $1.50

Today's recipe:

Couscous Avocado Salad

This salad, my dinner today is at its simplest best. Just with couple of ingredients, few of minutes of prep and you have a full meal in itself.

1. Boil 1/2 cup of water with 1/8 tsp of salt. Remove from heat and add 1/2 cup of Whole Wheat Couscous. Cover and keep aside for 5-7 mins. Fluff it with a fork, once done.

2. Meanwhile, slice half avocado into small slices.

3. In a mixing bowl, add couscous, avocado pieces with salsa and some hot pepper sauce. Adjust the seasoning if necessary.

Variation: Couscous can be substituted with any grain like brown rice, quinoa etc.

16 oz Couscous packet: $3.49; 1/2 Avocado: $0.83; Salsa (one whole bottle): $2.99; Hot pepper sauce (one bottle): $2.76

The quantities used for the recipe vary according to one's taste. But, the total cost would definitely be less than $2.

Have a good week ahead. cya soon!

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