All posts tagged: Budget

Turkey Meatballs, 53p [from ‘A Girl Called Jack’]

These meatballs are a classic recipe from my first cookbook, A Girl Called Jack, and they recently got a new and exciting lease of life when I taught Marcus Rashford to cook them in the kitchen of his old school, Button Lane Primary School, in Wythenshawe, Manchester a couple of months ago. And then I had to keep it a MASSIVE SECRET which god help me, has almost burst me with anticipation a few times over the past few weeks, especially when people have endlessly been asking on Twitter if we are going to be doing anything together. Serene emojis and poker faces all round. Video footage of that strange and hilarious and humbling and inspiring day is available on the GQ YouTube channel on their Men Of The Year awards video – and I’ll be posting my own video later on when I get the okay from the GQ team. Marcus was a bit nervous about cooking, saying it wasn’t something he really did, but we had an absolute blast and he made an …

Top 5 Tips For Eating Healthily On A Budget (and the limitations)

On Sunday, after the Government announced new measures to attempt to tackle the correlation between poverty and obesity, I found myself suddenly on the end of literally dozens of enquiries from journalists and reporters, asking me for a response to the news. I couldn’t get around to all of them; but wrote this for BBC News on the hidden complexities of attempting a one-size-fits-all strategy, and my top five tips for eating well on a low budget. There are many complex reasons why cooking and eating healthily on a low budget can present a challenge for people, and unless you have lived that life, some of them can be unimaginable. Some people have complex dietary needs, such as coeliac disease, IBS, lupus, or other illnesses that lead to digestive complications. Autoimmune diseases do not discriminate by salary; people who live in poverty do have to contend with them too. In other circumstances, people may lack cooking facilities, in houses of multiple occupancy, student halls, domestic abuse and homelessness shelters. They may have shoddy landlords renting …

The difference between poverty and poverty tourism? You’ll never live like common people.

Every now and again, a minor celebrity or institution will announce that they are ‘challenging themselves’ to ‘be poor for a day’ in order to raise awareness of the plight of people living in poverty in the UK. Sometimes this is done through charitable initiatives such as Live Below The Line, which I have done myself for several years running, fundraising for Oxfam and Street Child United. I use my own experiences of living in real food and fuel poverty, as a single mum on benefits, to cook and eat for £1 a day, and write about it extensively. It usually causes some degree of mental anguish, flashbacks, reliving of some of the worst periods of my life, and is not something that I enter into lightly. I have not done it for the last two years, to protect and preserve my own mental health. I am not sure if I will do it again. Compare this, then, to YouTube star Alfie Deyes, deciding to live on just one measly pound for a day, as …

Vegan Moussaka, 31p [from ‘Veganish’]

As the granddaughter of a Cypriot immigrant, I know my claim to have made the ‘ultimate’ moussaka is indeed a bold one. My grandfather would laugh in my face at the very notion of this vegan offering being considered anything close to the original, but, being a former chef himself (he once had a restaurant called the BellaPais in Southend, before moving on to greasy spoon fry-ups at his humble guest house), his laughter would surely dissipate into an appreciative growl once he got this past his guffaws. I have long feared making moussaka, worrying it would not pass muster with my Greek bones, but tonight, I think I have cracked it. Gone are the eggs that would normally bolster the white sauce, replaced instead with unctuous cashew milk and a smattering of mustard for richness. The lamb becomes lentils, a sort of poundshop reverse Jesus trick, and the whole thing luxuriates, dense yet sloppy, earthy yet bright, wholesome yet decadent, and 31p per portion. (This post is not sponsored; I provide links to the …