On Day 4 of eating on £1 a day, I felt as if I was spending my entire life preparing and cooking.
I woke up in the morning and made porridge for breakfast and then also had to prepare some boiled white rice for lunch. I also still had four of my five apples left and needed to come up with a way to use them (I wasn’t enjoying how tart they were so had avoided eating them earlier in the week.)
So I decided to make a simple apple tart — one for me and one for my friend who is also eating on £1 a day this week. Pastry ingredients were quite simple: equal parts butter and white flour with slightly less equivalent of water. Then just mix the butter and flour together and then drip on the water as you go until you get the right consistency and then thinly slice apple and lay it along the top of the pastry and sprinkle a bit of sugar on top:
I was able to afford the butter, flour and sugar because I will not be using my second can of baked beans (37p) and probably the last two of my five apples (20p). I should say though that this is technically not abiding by the rules of the campaign as I would have had to buy the entire block of butter and an entire bag of flour and sugar (which I did not).
Put the tarts into the oven at Gas Mark 5, and in about 10 minutes or so, they were ready. I put a bit of extra sugar on top and then caramelised it with my blowtorch (again, thank you, technology):
They turned out pretty well. I still have to deliver the second tart. I hope it goes down a treat.
Dinner was much the same as earlier in the week: boiled potatoes with chives, two dry-fried eggs and mixed vegetables although I was able to harvest some rocket leaves from my garden, which was a real treat.
I think that most people, when they think of poverty, think in absolute terms. In essence, this is what the £1 a day challenge is all about — determine a minimal level of physical subsistence required (i.e. £1 a day) and then anyone who falls under that line is considered poor.
In reality, poverty is much more complex a phenomenon than that. “Relative poverty” is defined not in absolute terms but based on the average standard of living in the society where you live. Similarly, policymakers and practitioners are also debating whether additional metrics (other than income) should be factored in, such as life span, education and even “happiness”.
So far this week, I seem to have been able to give myself enough food each day, but I definitely have felt deprived in the context of others around me. A good lesson to reflect on for the remainder of the week.