I’ve just done my Monday to Friday shop for this weeks Live Below The Line challenge.
I live and eat on a very small budget already, and several of my friends have asked me what would be so ‘challenging’ about taking part in Live Below The Line for me.
Well, most of my recipes are built around a 1.25kg vegetable bag I find in my local supermarket for £1. First hurdle this morning – they haven’t got any in stock. So I find myself in my supermarket, thinking on my feet with my fiver in my hand. Mentally rewriting my meal plan for the week, I picked up an onion and headed for the frozen department.
I also normally build my meals around the herbs growing on my window ledge, and the spices I have accumulated one at a time over the past year. I won’t be using those this week at all.
In fact for the next five days, I will only be eating anything I manage to buy for five pounds in total, from today until friday. No store cupboard essentials that I have built up over time, even on my stringent budget.
I’m going back to where I started from, just under a year ago. No cumin, no garam masala, and although I had the chilli plant back then, I won’t be using it this week.
Those of you who have read ‘Hunger Hurts’ on my blog know where my story began. For five days, fifteen meals, five pounds, I’m going back to the start.

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Total food for the week:
1kg frozen mixed veg, 75p
411g lemon curd, 22p
White medium loaf, 50p
1l unsweetened soya drink, 59p
1kg white rice, 40p
500g corn flakes, 31p
400g chopped tomatoes, 31p
400g chopped tomatoes, 31p
400g kidney beans, 21p
13g mixed herbs, 30p
500g spaghetti, 39p
1 onion (125g), 11p

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To donate to Live Below The Line, a global poverty project, click here: https://www.livebelowtheline.com/me/agirlcalledjack
If you are taking part in this years Live Below The Line challenge and want to share your experience, get in touch at jackmonroe@live.co.uk
Jack Monroe. Twitter: @MsJackMonroe