Monday, 14 September 2020

The Ration Challenge - Day One


So here we are day one of the Ration Challenge, and I woke up to the news that between us the Challengers and their sponsors have raised a million pounds ... WOW what an incentive for us to give this our all.

I started my day with a glass of hot water, something I always do but usually there is a slice of frozen lemon floating in there, giving a hint of flavour and a touch of goodness.


Alan sat opposite and tucked into crumpets with lots of butter and lemon curd, washed down with a cup of tea.  My water went down well, but there was nothing there except liquid refreshment.  No goodness, no flavour and most definitely no morning shot of caffeine to jump start my day and make me want to leap up and make myself some breakfast.


My first job of the day was to put away all the foods from the little shelf in the kitchen that I wouldn't be able to eat for the next seven days, and instead fill it with all my Ration Challenge foods.

It looks surprisingly sparse, even with the onions and tomatoes temporarily joining the dried and jarred foods while I took the photo.  With the rice cooker out I set to making enough rice for today.


For some reason I decided it would be Spicy Turmeric Rice for breakfast this morning ... now I seem to have dyed everything a rather fetching shade of fluorescent yellow, rice cooker, wooden spoon, dishcloth etc 

The rice that came in the Ration Pack clumped together as it cooked and was stodgy, not that I'm complaining really.  It filled the gap in my stomach that was waiting for it's Weetabix and hot buttered Sunday morning toast and that was the main thing.

We walked the dogs along the canal and then  briefly left them in the car while we went into Aldi for Alan to pick up some supplies for him to take home with him.  Seeing him walk out with two bags full of food brought it home all the more that my little box of food was all I had for the week ahead.

I'm glad that I'm mostly doing the Challenge here on my own.  No temptation to cheat, no pots of hot coffee on the go or misplaced offers of lunches to be eaten out and I'm glad I've got my menu planned out, it will keep me on the straight and narrow.


My lunch was a Garlic Paratha made with 50g of my flour ration and liberally sprinkled with Garlic Powder to give it flavour, accompanied by a black coffee ... one of three I will be making with my two teaspoons of instant coffee earned last week. 

I burnt it slightly ... I like my food pale, but I ate the well done pieces first and then savoured the paler ones.  Then I sipped the coffee while watching an episode of The Bridge, it's surprising how long you can make a cup of coffee last when you know its the only one you will have until Wednesday!!


Tea time saw me and Suky waving Alan and Mavis off for the week, and then while Suky snoozed on her full tummy after her doggy dinner I started on mine.

I decided to cook up all the kidney beans in one fell swoop, so I checked my workings out for how much I could have for my evening meal.  Seemingly a 40g portion was what I had allowed myself.

Five minutes sautéing in a pan with two thirds of one of my onions, a dash of Paprika and a heaped teaspoon of Cumin and they were done.


I separated off enough for the four other meals I will need them for and while these started to cool ...


... I added some of the cooked rice to the pan to heat thoroughly through.  The rest of the rice went straight back into the fridge and will be used for breakfast.  One less job to do in the morning.


My tea - Spicy Turmeric Rice with Kidney Beans and Onion.

Another cup of hot water before bed and that was it ... my day in food.  The final foody job of the day was to tip my dried chickpeas into a jug full of water and leave them to soak overnight.

Day One under my belt ... will it be one notch tighter by the end of the week I wonder?



Why not visit Faith at Much More with Less and read all about her first day on the Challenge too.


Sue xx




21 comments:

  1. The spicy rice with kidney beans and onion looks surprisingly tasty, for such a few ingredients.

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    1. It was quite tasty, helped in part by the amount of salt I had to sprinkle on it ... I see this being a very salty week!!

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  2. I agree with Sooze - visual is important, isn't it?
    I agree than doing it on your own - I mean without anyone else around - is going to help quite considerable. I found that with the losing weight too; no other temptation, no having other food aromas wafting across the table, so other visual stimulation.
    It helps.

    All the very best for the week ahead and a million is absolutely amazing! Well done to everyone involved!
    xx

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    1. I am going to be doing my best to make my meals visually appealing and as varied as possible. How the folk living on just rice with either beans or lentils thrown into the mix and no thought about making different things are going to cope I really don't know.

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  3. A bit sparce, I agree. Maybe it's the lack of anything green?
    Well, with turmeric you really can paint the world bright yellow :-)
    Have a nice week!

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    1. Yes the lack of green this week is going to be sad :-( That's one reason why I have chosen to make my reward drink a green smoothie, I NEED something green and flavourful midweek or I will go mad.

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  4. Oh my goodness....my heart sank for you when I saw again how little to have to survive on. It really IS a blessing that you are on your own in the van with no temptation like Alan's breakfast! But what an amazing total you all have raised. Hats off to you Sue, you are one amazing lady ((hugs)) x

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    1. The total is amazing and that is thanks to everyone who has either donated or supported me while I do this. You are all an wonderful lot.

      No it's not a lot of food, but I have planned carefully and it should at the very least last me for the whole week.

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  5. You have really studied how to get the best out of your food. Do the charity work out the calorific/nutritional values so that people are not malnourished? With food being sparse would you lose weight?

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    1. The charity have worked out that if we eat all the food contained in the box and the additional rice and flour we will be living on just over 1700 calories a day. Combining beans or lentils with rice gives you a complete protein which is important for health and drinking lots of water can only be a good thing.

      By raising so much sponsorship money I have also been able to add the extras which at least give me some vegetables and fruit
      ... onion and tomatoes, plus the contents of my smoothie midweek. How people manage on this long term I have no idea, the average stay in the Syrian refugee camps has been worked out at 17 years.

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    2. 1700 is a good amount and if you're hungry you would be grateful for it. But it must be nice having the additional bits too.

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  6. A million, how wonderful. Real help from people who care, direct to the folk that need it. Again, well done Sue. x

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    1. It is an amazing amount isn't it, and the fundraising goes on. Lots of participants have only just started their fundraising while they do the Challenge.

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  7. Well done! Good work you are doing. I am wondering if little Suky will be eating more than you this week!
    It is sad how some have so little while others have too much! Nice that you are trying to help. Thank you.

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    1. Haha ... Suky would love the idea of that 😄. This Challenge is a real eye opener isn't it.

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  8. Fantastic amount raised so far:) Well done Sue and Faith, hats off to both♥ Linda xx

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  9. Turmeric does seem to have a habit of staining things. However your rice looks very good.

    God bless.

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    1. Oh yes, it's pungent stuff, it doesn't add much flavour does it, but wow the colour!!

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  10. All the best for this week Sue, congrats on your amazing fundraising, and thank you so much for mentioning my post about the Ration Challenge. One of your kind readers, Linda, even nipped over to my blog and donated to my page too. Much appreciated, I'm so touched. Helps face up to yet more rice knowing the money is going to such a good cause.

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    1. My readers have been so kind, generous and supportive this year Good luck with your Challenge, let's keep linking ♥️

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