Day Four, on accidentally forgetting ones lunch.

At the end of yesterday, day four of my Live Below The Line challenge, I had the following food left from my £5 food shop on Sunday:

Bread, 13 slices.
Lemon curd, approximately half the jar left.
Cornflakes, 390g.
Unsweetened soya drink: 650ml
Long grain white rice: 555g
Chopped tomatoes: 500g
Kidney beans: 300g – already made into kidney bean burgers on Tuesday, and frozen in patties.
Frozen mixed vegetables: 525g
Spaghetti: 500g
Onion: 1 (Why did I buy a poxy onion?!)
Broccoli, carrot, courgette and green beans: 240g
Mixed herbs: 13g (again, starting to feel a bit surplus to requirements!)


I left my lunch at home by accident yesterday, in the rush to get a very excited Small Boy to ‘school’, which subsequently left me sitting at my desk all day, off the back of a single slice of toast with lemon curd.

When I arrived home twelve hours later, I put some rice and vegetables on to cook before I’d even taken my coat off, too hungry to care about sauce or lemon curd or anything other than getting it down my neck as quickly as possible to alleviate the grumbling rumbling of my stomach.

That simple meal kept me going until 2am, as I attended the local county elections to see in the results.

As you can see from the list above, there’s still a fair bit of my food shop left. I haven’t had the best diet for the past few days, and I wish I had opted for whole meal bread instead of white, but I haven’t run out of food yet either…

More to follow later on Day Five, and reflections, and calculations of what’s left out of the original £5 shop…

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If you are taking part in this years Live Below The Line challenge and want to share your experience, get in touch at

Jack Monroe. Twitter: @MsJackMonroe

Categories: Blog, Live Below The Line


  1. Wholemeal goes off quicker, at least that’s what I’ve found. In times when I’ve had to make a loaf of bread last a week I’ve always gone for white, so full of chemicals it takes ages to turn. I’d pick wholemeal in general though, much more nourishing. Good luck with the continuation of your challenge.

      • That’ll work too 🙂 A wee tip about freezing bread, freeze all your outsiders (don’t know if other people call the end bits of the loaf that) and keep them in a bag together, adding as you get more, when the bag is full pop them all in a baking tray and cook them in a low oven for as long as it takes for them to start to show golden bits, take them out, cool them on a wire rack then blend them and keep them in a jar. Home made breadcrumbs 🙂

      • John, great idea for homemade bread crumbs. Another strategy is to turn the outsider part to the inside of the sandwich. And in the summer, a nice strategy is to cube the outsider before baking it and then use them to make a French tomato-bread salad when the tomatoes on your allotment are ripe.


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