Day 3 – reflections on how Zen-like this all is.

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June 3, 2009 by missmegany

As I was making the crumble last night, I realised that I was never this careful about cooking. I made sure absolutely no oats fell onto the counter. After using my hands to rub in the butter, I spent a good two minutes taking all the oats off of my hands and back into the bowl. I didn’t want to waste one bit of that crumble. I think Mac would agree that this challenge makes you focus on food to such an extent that you appreciate it far more. We’ve started looking with earnest at recipes (well, Mac has. I’ve been staring at stupid spreadsheets about it) and we’re both getting back into the enjoyment of a good challenge.

As much I’ll appreciate not having to slave over a scale and calculator once the month is over, there is something to be said for the heightened awareness. I’m hoping that after this month is over, I can convince Mac to try out a 100mile challenge. After realising that it would stretch from Hastings, Bedford, part of Wales(!) and Exeter, I feel a little bit better about trying it out. And, if we were doing that, it would avoid any of the comments about whether we’re just trying to save money. Although doing it still on a budget would make it almost like the extreme sport of diets.

Anyway, onto the food:

Wild Rice Salad (from UKTV food)
Ingredients – total: £1.35(5), per portion: 28p
400g long grain and Wild rice, mixed together –48p for rice, wild rice was FREE (way to get stuff after its sell-by date!)
1 red pepper, finely diced – RIVERFORD
1 green pepper, finely diced (skipped)
1 small red Onion, finely minced – 12p
6 button mushrooms, finely diced – RIVERFORD
10 cherry tomatoes, halved – RIVERFORD
A handful of fresh Coriander, roughly chopped (skipped)
A handful of flat leaf Parsley, roughly chopped GARDEN!!

For the salad dressing:
4 tbsp Olive oil (Rapeseed oil – 60p)
1 tbsp red wine vinegar (4p)
Grated zest and juice of 1 unwaxed Lemons (1T – 3p)
1 tsp Mustard (skipped)
1 tsp Honey (1p)
1 clove Garlic, crushed (7.5p)
black pepper
Total: 75.5. Per portion (we’re going to stretch it to 6 portions) 13p


  1. Place the rice in a large saucepan. Cover generously with water, season with salt and bring to the boil.
  2. Cover the saucepan, reduce the temperature and simmer the rice for 20 minutes until the rice is al dente. Drain the rice thoroughly in a colander and allow to cool.
  3. Mix together the cooled rice, red pepper, green pepper, red onion, mushrooms, cherry tomatoes, coriander and parsley.
  4. Make the salad dressing by mixing together the olive oil, wine vinegar, lemon zest and juice, mustard, honey and garlic. Season with salt and freshly ground pepper.
  5. Pour the salad dressing over the rice salad and toss through. Serve.

Day’s Breakdown:
Breakfast 13p

Megan’s drinks 3.4p had 0.4p worth of cordial and a cup of tea in the morning 3p
Riverford 77.5p
Mac had one pear, 36p
Lunch – Mac ate for free, Megan spent 9p + 28.5p for beans/sauce on super-leftovers
Dinner 28p per portion

Total before dessert: Mac, £1.55, Megan £1.59 (Mac’s pear was just about the same as Megan’s entire lunch. Fruit inequality discussion coming soon!)
Dessert was more of the rhubarb and apple crumble for 32.5p and we STILL had money left!
Then Mac made himself a slice of sourdough with butter (carefully weighed to just make the
£2.00 mark) and cut Megan a teeny-tiny slice as well.

Total? Somewhere right under £2.00


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Less and Less and More is all about enjoying more, all whilst worrying about less. Whether enjoying better health because you eat less junk, having more time for friends and family because you spend less time on acquiring, or lots of other big and little things that we want more of, I look at examples of people doing more.


Less and Less and More

Finding more in our gardens, our plates, our communities

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