What is this Hunger Challenge?? For my readers who are not familiar with the parent blog, Mirch Masala, here is something about the Hunger challenge that AJ and I are participating in.
United Way of King County is organizing a Hunger Action Week from Apr 20-24, 2009 in an effort to create awareness about hunger issues in Washington. Many food bloggers and other individuals have been challenged to provide nutritious wholesome meals to themselves or their families in under $X amount per day. The $X is the maximum food stamp benefit ( known as Basic Food Program in Washington) that is given to individuals or families. The rule for this Hunger challenge are as follows:
· Eat breakfast, lunch and dinner spending only $X a day (see below)
· Salt and pepper don’t count but all other seasonings, cooking oils, condiments, snacks, drinks, etc do.
· Don’t use food you already own.
· Don’t accept food from family, friends, coworkers and others. Not even the free samples from Costco!
· Try to include fresh produce and healthy protein each day.
How Much Can I Spend Per Day?
Individuals can spend about $7 a day for the challenge. We chose that amount because it is the maximum food benefits a single person can get on Basic Food (what Washington calls food stamps). And while Basic Food is designed to be a supplement to food budgets, the reality is that many rely solely on their benefits for food because they don’t have enough money to buy food as well as all the take care of other expenses that they have.
This table shows how much allowance you’re allowed depending on family size:
Household Size Hunger Challenge Budget
1 $7 / day
2 $12 / day
3 $18 / day
4 $22 / day
5 $26 / day
6 $32 / day
7 $35 / day
8 $45 / day
Interestingly, the $7 is generous compared to most other hunger challenges. Many places set the budget based on the average food stamp benefits: $3 a day. For this challenge, we are just trying to emphasize that many, many people are living on tight food budgets and work at the same time, so it’s tough for them to have meals that are fulfilling and healthy.
What Is The Point Of The Challenge?
The Hunger Challenge is really an exercise in empathy – to live in someone else’s shoes for one week and learn how you can help fight hunger in our community.
You will find my menu for the week and other recipes in Mirch Masala. Grilled Chicken was one of the items in the menu for Monday’s dinner.
|Chicken Breast – 1 |
Mediterranean Spice Blend ( bought from World Market and is a blend of Oregano, Garlic granules, Lemon Peel, Dill Weed, Dill Seed, Chili Flakes, Spearmint Leaf, Cinnamon, Mace and Chervil) – 3 tsp
Olive Oil – 1/2 tsp
Marinate the chicken breast with the spice blend for about a couple of hours. Put the two in a ziplock bag, shake well and refrigerate for 2 hrs. Heat oil in a griddle or stove-top grill. Grill the chicken until thoroughly cooked and brown on both sides. You can use the conventional oven for this as well. Season with salt and pepper, if required and serve.