The Cooking Game

I’m slowly learning to make the most of $2 a day. In fact I’m learning a lot of things that will hopefully prove useful in the weeks to come, like how work and eating conflict. The price of a pen to replace the one that ran out of ink costs the same as two peppers and an egg. My haggling skills have also increased as I spend more time sorting and digging for the better quality. I learned to buy white peaches instead of orange ones, but I also learned how eating too much raw avocado too fast will make me fart like a jet engine for approximately the rest of my life.

So lets play a learning game. When I look back at the list of things I bought on a daily budget there are some that seem reasonably well balanced and others that make me smack my forehead and say, “That was it?” But when the money leaves the palm of my hand under the guise of a good idea, that’s all I can do. You the reader may have a better perspective on what it is I can cook. Take a look at last week’s meals:

April 1                                           April 2                                      April 3                               April 4

1 cheese bread                           1 cheese bread                      1 egg bread                      1 egg bread

1 chocolate empenada            1 cinnamon croissant        2 muffins                          1 chocolate empanada

1 pack of crackers                    1 giant avocado                    5 carrots                           5 potatoes

4 peppers                                    ½ kilo flour                            ¼ cup peas                      1 bullion cube

5oz steak                                           –                                             1 egg                                    2 peaches

¼ kilo rice                                       –                                              1 handful peanuts          6oz chicken

.      –                                                    –                                              1 tomato                                    –

.      –                                                    –                                               3oz cheese                               –                                            

.      –                                                    –                                               1 bag mini pastas                   –

The game is simple: write out the best recipe you can come up with and post it in the comments. If you decide to play Beginner you can take all the ingredients and make a wonderful meal. Intermediate has you working only with one day’s rations and Hard mode means you have to make the days supply last for all three meals. If you’re feeling brave try Expert: spread the food over all three meals, no oven, no microwave, and no drinkable water. All water must be boiled first and for every ingredient above the first three used at dinner you must delay going to bed by another half an hour given that digestion is a heavier process at altitude.

I have found that creating exciting meals out of what is sometimesbland food distracts from the lack of quantity thereof. I challenge you to April third, when I ate the egg bread for breakfast and took the two muffins with the block of cheese for lunch. At dinner I poured the peanuts into a bowl and smashed them up with a rock from the garden (as is the Andean way). I added left over flower from April second, a little borrowed oil, salt, and water. I mixed it up into a tasty peanut sauce that I then spread over the steamed peas and carrots. Finally I put some chopped tomatoes in a frying pan with the egg and poured the cooked mini bowtie pastas in overtop. Slowly it browned until I was left with plate of golden egg noodles. Although it proved a savory meal I was up later than I would have liked. What should I have cooked instead? Anybody who posts a recipe in the comments that impresses me this weekend will earn a $5 donation to La Ceiba in their name.



One comment

  1. Ruth Prentice · · Reply

    You’ve impressed me with the meal you described. I’ll give YOU $5.00 🙂
    With ingredients listed, Im going to try and think like Scott……. fry peppers and onion to serve over the steak for dinner with boiled potatoes and cheese bread. Also smash tomato with advacodo which may taste good on the tomale or spread on crackers.
    But seriously Jeff, I’m enjoying reading your posts, and I believe you are doing a good thing by raising awareness. Also an experience you will never forget. I am praying for you to stay healthy, and be strong. I think I will be happier when the two dollar a day challenge is over and you eat normally again. God Bless you

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