back to article El Reg Quid-A-Day Nosh Posse spared chickpea ordeal

Mercifully for the members of the El Reg Quid-A-Day Nosh Posse, who have for the last few years suffered an annual five days of dietary privation as they attempted to subsist on £1 per day for food, the Live Below the Line challenge has been suspended until 2017. So, we're spared a diet of chickpea stew, and readers are spared …

  1. wolfetone Silver badge

    I'm currently doing this, but not because I want to raise money for malaria. I'm in the unlucky storm of having bought a house that needed rewiring, saving for a wedding, and nursing a car that wants £1,000 spent on it's turbo.

    Still, I've lost half a stone. That will help with my diesel usage.

    1. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge
      Happy

      When the electrician has finished the job - connect him to the mains. This solves your money problems in two ways. One, you won't have to pay him, and two, you've now got a ready barbecued meal. Admittedly it might be a stretch to get him to cover himself in marinade beforehand...

      The wedding is more problematic. There is no known solution to this problem, short of selling the rights to Hello Magazine.

      1. Rich 11 Silver badge

        The wedding is more problematic. There is no known solution to this problem, short of selling the rights to Hello Magazine.

        You're doing it back to front. Find a wealthy father-in-law-to-be and woo his daughters and/or sons.

        If he owns a chain of garages then your turbo problems are sorted too!

        1. wolfetone Silver badge

          "You're doing it back to front. Find a wealthy father-in-law-to-be and woo his daughters and/or sons.

          If he owns a chain of garages then your turbo problems are sorted too!"

          Genuinely annoyed I didn't think of this.

          1. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge
            Happy

            Surely better if he owns a brewery?

      2. Captain DaFt

        "The wedding is more problematic. There is no known solution to this problem, short of selling the rights to Hello Magazine."

        Simplest solution, sell the wedding to some studio as a reality show (My Wacky English Wedding might work as a concept title), and let the studio foot the bill.

        Extra bonuses: The studio will plan(script) the entire wedding, so no hassles for the bride, no need to hire a photographer for wedding snaps, and the wrap party can double as the wedding reception and a tax writeoff!

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Wedding is more problematic. There is no known solution to this problem

          I beg to differ. Death, either before or after, seems to be a permanent solution. When you go through with it it's even in the contract so don't give up hope just yet.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Still, I've lost half a stone. That will help with my diesel usage.

      If you're living on pulses, perhaps you could capture your own methane, and drive on that. Of course, it won't help until you put in a proper engine. You know, a spark ignition one.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Yeah, crippling a turbo with a half fat engine..

        Criminal..

        Mine runs on baby rabbits and dolphins...Or it might as well as for the good it does for the environment.

        No kids you see, so I don't have to worry about leaving the planet a mess. I'm here for a good time, then i'll die.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          I'm here for a good time, then i'll die.

          And commenting round here counts as a good time in your planned Life of Selfish Indulgence?

    3. Mike Richards

      Two words

      Liposuction

      and

      Biodiesel

      But good luck with the diet/rewiring/wedding/turbo - just say 'I do' to the right person and don't promise to give everything that's yours to the electrician (although it often ends up that way).

  2. chivo243 Silver badge
    Pint

    Sorry to hear the project is on hold

    I hope nothing serious has impeded the posse and their crusade.

    1. Lester Haines (Written by Reg staff) Gold badge

      Re: Sorry to hear the project is on hold

      Live Below the Line decided to take a break and regroup for 2017. So, the decision was made for us.

      1. Bob H

        Re: Sorry to hear the project is on hold

        @Lester,

        In the article it wasn't particularly clear as to why you had suspended operations, perhaps you could look at the text to make that clearer?

      2. Robert Moore

        Re: Sorry to hear the project is on hold

        I think you should just go ahead and do it anyway.

        I have followed your progress for the past couple of years, and learned a lot.

      3. John Brown (no body) Silver badge
        Coat

        Re: Sorry to hear the project is on hold

        "Live Below the Line decided to take a break and regroup for 2017. So, the decision was made for us."

        Cutbacks or austerity; we're all in it together. Unless you have a Panama hat.

  3. Aristotles slow and dimwitted horse Silver badge

    @ Sorry to hear the project is on hold...

    Global chickpea shortage.

    1. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge

      Re: @ Sorry to hear the project is on hold...

      I'm determined not to touch the chickpeas next year. Even though I've still got half a packet left from last year - still not feeling a strong desire to use them up... My Aunt tells me that the trick with the dried ones is to use a pressure cooker, but I don't have one. The tinned ones are nicer, but twice as expensive, and I already went 9p over budget last year (when I'd finally done the calcs). Shame!

      I think perhaps lentils. Though tofu is £1.40 for 350g on Sainsbury's site. So a bit of shopping around might get it cheaper. And I can curry it or something. And eggs. Made a big omelette last time, with much veg and tatties, which did a dinner and two lunches. Yum. Frozen mixed veg is decently nutritious, but doesn't taste very nice, sadly. I'd only used the chickpeas to bulk out, and add a bit of protein to, my delicious Italian tomato and herb sauce. The plan was to convert this into curry, once I got bored. It also had a backup role as a tomato sauce for pizza, using Lidl (£1.49 for 300g) plastic cheddar and left over bread with a bit of veg. But the day I was going to do that, I couldn't be arsed, and just made eggy-bread (french toast) for dinner instead.

      1. chivo243 Silver badge

        Re: @ Sorry to hear the project is on hold...

        @I ain't Spartacus

        The missus uses chick peas to make soups and falafel. Soak them over night, put them in the food processor with chopped onion, garlic and herbs from the garden. I also added an egg to bind it, but you can use flour in place of egg if you are strict vegetarian. Presto! falafel. Made some little disks, coated them in sesame seeds and pan fried them. Used the Tzatziki Sauce I made the previous night for dipping.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: @ Sorry to hear the project is on hold...

        No tricks needed with chick peas just get the bigger ones that haven't been left laying around for ages, which is difficult to tell with a dried pea. The older they are the less likely they are to go soft. Smaller ones also seem to be more difficult to soften. I've noiticed that the cheaper bargain ones are tiny in comparison to more expensive brands, the saving isn't worth it although if you're in a position to hunt small prey they are useful as ammo in a sling shot.

  4. Dan 55 Silver badge
    Meh

    Osborne's idea of ending maleria

    Bleed people dry before the mosquitos can get to them.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    quid a day

    A far easier target to hit the more people you are feeding, v.nice home made vegetarian meals come in very cheap per person if you are cooking for 2 or 3 people.

    Ironically meal I'm planned to be cooking for partner & myself tonight will come in at significantly under a quid each (though all the fresh herbs in it are from the garden so what could be a big expense is zero which makes a difference)

    1. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge

      Re: quid a day

      Remember though that it's £1 a day, not a meal. So you've got to get brekkie, lunch and soemthing to drink out of it. Obviously I just chose to have water that week, but I couldn't go without a few cups of tea a day. The office coffee machine comes out at 50p a cup, so that was right out. A teabag is about 1.5p.

      Also the global poverty line measure is actually a measure of consumption. So it's an economic value put on everything that the poorest people get to consume, not how much stuff they're able to buy. Given that most of the world's poorest barely interact with the cash economy. So lots of them are subsistence farmers, and the $1.60 a day includes the value of the crops they grow.

      I therefore decided that it was cheating to use anything I could grow, or get free. Though others took a different view. And in the end, there's no point going over the top.

      Veg was what I struggled with though. I'm perfectly happy to go without meat for a week. As I in fact did. But finding nice veg that I could afford was much harder. Peppers were out of the question. I could have afforded a few apples. But basically had to settle for carrots, potatoes, onions, chickpeas and the like. Salad stuff was too expensive. And even things like cauliflower, leeks and broccoli were too much of a stretch. A decent portion of cauliflower cheese would have been at least 70p, which doesn't leave anything for some other veg, let alone other meals and a handful of teabags for the rest of the day.

  6. Joe Harrison

    Don't want to sound smug but

    This is more or less how I eat all the time anyway. People say "chickpeas" as though they're having to eat ball bearings, what's wrong with chickpeas they're lovely.

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Roadkill

    I have eaten many road killed (more injured then I have finished em off) birds, ducks and pheasants galore here. Shoot and eat rabbit frequently, even squirrel is on my menu. Pigeons too. All free, all considered pests, all lived truly free lives and eaten natural food.

    Buy yourself a 70 quid airgun, a 30 quid scope, find a friendly farmer who needs his IT stuff doing and swap your time for his permission to use the airgun on his farm.

    Sorted. Free meat.

    NB it takes about 20,000 pellets to kill a cow!!!

    NB PS Probably

    Rats are NOT good to eat!

    1. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge
      Happy

      Re: Roadkill

      NB it takes about 20,000 pellets to kill a cow!!!

      Is that how they get the holes in swiss cheese?

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Roadkill

      >Buy yourself a 70 quid airgun, a 30 quid scope

      So you have to starve for 100 days before you can begin to eat. Not a very good plan.

      1. Ru'

        Re: Roadkill

        If the quid has to include the tools then surely pots, pans, cutlery etc. would also have to come from it?

    3. jake Silver badge

      Re: Roadkill

      I do harvest roadkill, occasionally.

      I would never torture a critter with more than one shot, much less 20,000 ...

      We had rabbit stew a few days ago ... the Whippets had a good hunt.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Roadkill

        @Jake.

        You would never torture a critter but will happily let whippets tear a rabbit to pieces??

        What sort of fucked up rationalisation is that???

        1. jake Silver badge

          @ cornz 1 (was: Re: Roadkill)

          "You would never torture a critter but will happily let whippets tear a rabbit to pieces??"

          No. The dawgs snap their furry little necks, and that's it. No muss, no fuss.

          "What sort of fucked up rationalisation is that???"

          It's called "The Law Of The Wild". Food doesn't originate in the back rooms at Safeway/Tesco.

    4. jake Silver badge

      Re: Roadkill

      "Rats are NOT good to eat!"

      Worse than seagulls, almost as bad as possum, squirrels are almost tastier.

      All will keep you alive in a pinch.

    5. gazthejourno (Written by Reg staff)

      Re: Roadkill

      Hmmm. looks at general licence...

      Nah. walks away

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Roadkill

        @Gazthe journo

        What, specifically, is the issue??

        Both rabbit and squirrel have no season and can be culled, legally, anytime.

        Some birds have a season to shoot them, ducks being one example but canadian geese can be shot anytime (with certain exceptions).

        People laugh at me for eating wild food and call me cruel for shooting them, as they tuck into their burger or chickin korma... Blind to the terrible conditions those animals have been reared in.

  8. jake Silver badge

    During the meanwhile ...

    ... we've been trying to keep it under a quid (2 bucks) a day per person for over a decade here on the ranch (8 adults). And I'm in California's Sonoma County, land of the entirely too wealthy.

    Sometimes, it just makes sense to act locally ...

  9. nsld

    Was wondering what had happened

    Was actually looking forward to doing this again after last year.

    Might have a crack at it anyway as I am poor this month.

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