If you spend much time around church food pantries, and the government-administered food assistance programs that are often run out of churches, then you might have noticed that the food available to people with restricted incomes is often the least-healthy option available. As food pantries seek to reduce costs, and cut down on spoilage, they understandably rely a lot on processed and canned food, everything which is high in sugar and carbohydrates, and that doesn’t always taste fantastic.
Leanne Brown, a chef originally from Canada, noticed this situation, and decided to do something to remedy it. She published the cookbook Good and Cheap online–a compendium of recipes geared towards the recipients of federal assistance, each of which are healthy, tasty, and cheap enough to be made for under $4 each.
And, it’s free online. (Cue the choirs of angels singing.)
So what are Brown’s secrets to eating well on $4 a day? It’s about stocking the pantry with cheap basics to build meals from: things like garlic, canned vegetables, dried beans and butter.
She also emphasizes flexibility, and avoids prescribing strict meals and methods. That means lots of options for substitutions, especially when it comes to the produce aisle, where prices can fluctuate based on season and availability. Each meal is priced out by serving.
You can read the entire article from NPR and download Leanne’s book here.