So I was thinking, is something like this possible in Singapore?
Cos many people are always complaining of how expensive things are and that Singapore is only for the rich.
Note, I'm doing $1 per meal, not $2 per whole day.
It's probably not going to be fun to actually live like this cos the meal is going to be repetitive. I'm going to look for the cheapest way to get a good balance of calories and nutrients. Also, I'm not going to use any processed food cos it's just not healthy regardless of the price. One thing to note, is that I'll be trying to make the meal somewhat acceptable. So it's not going to be like beans and rice, that would be a cheap method, but really, that's just ridiculous. I'll also exclude the cooking cost and condiment cost. ie, the gas, oil, salt, soya sauce, etc. It's just going to be the main ingredient costs.
I'll be estimating this cos I'm not going to really try this. I doubt my wife would allow me.
I'll put in estimated serving size, so I'll need to divide the bulk purchase into smaller servings.
Rice 5kg housebrand (40 servings) = $5.50 ($0.1375)
5kg rice divide by 40 servings is 125gm. This is around 70% cup of rice.
Fresh whole chicken 1.4kg (12 servings) = $7.40 ($0.617)
2 drumstick +2 thigh +2 wing & drumlet +2 breast (6 servings)
Frozen whole chicken 800gm(6 servings) = $2.85 ($0.475)
2 drumstick & thigh +2 wing & drumlet & bit of breast + 2 remaining breast
Eggs (30 servings) = $4.20 ($0.14)
I love eggs.
Soya beans (1kg) (10 servings) = $2.05 ($0.205)
Green beans (1kg) (10 servings) = $2.05 ($0.205)
Don't ask me how to cook the beans, I have no idea what I can do with beans. But it's a good source of nutrition.
Vege (150gm per serving)
Cabbage 1.5kg (9 servings) = $1.90 ($0.211)
The 10th serving is the spine, and typically that is discarded.
Bean spouts 1kg (6 servings) = $1.20 ($0.20)
I bought 1kg beans sprouts at this price at Sheng Siong previously. I'm not sure if it was a promotion.
Ok so we'll make it with some room to spare, $0.1375 +$0.475 +$0.14 +$0.211 = $0.9635
(I use $0.211 for my vege cos I don't know if the bean sprouts are always available)
And it's not even a bad meal.
I could reduce the cost further by cutting the meat and having 2 sides instead.
But I'd rather have this to be a more reasonable exercise with quite ok food which isn't too hard to swallow.
It looks like $1 per meal is highly possible.
My prices are all taken from NTUC so there's a good chance that there may be other places which sell the ingredients at even cheaper prices.
Next, some folks may complain about the cooking timing and the cleaning up and everything. I find that no excuse. Let's all agree that probably none of us will be trying out this $1 per meal program. If someone tries this out, means chances are, he/she is probably in dire financial circumstances. So some additional effort or sacrifices may be needed to get back into shape.
I used to know someone (lost touch with him), who brought food to work everyday for lunch and dinner. He wasn't trying to save up. He was a gym enthusiast. So he was very detailed in the food he ate and the calories he consumed. I asked him how he managed to find time to cook and bring food to work everyday. His answer was that he cooked all his food on weekends and refrigerated them. Pretty extreme. He ate the same food everyday for a whole week and changed it weekly, but for 1 whole week it was always the same stuff. So he would just bring his chilled food to office and warm it up in the office microwave and have it every 2 hours. Some body builders try to keep their blood sugar levels regulated so they eat a few mouthfuls at regular intervals instead of large full meals.
So if someone is in such dire financial circumstances, that they even have to try out $1 meals, then I find it reasonable that they cook on weekends and eat pre-cooked and re-heated meals.
Anyway, this post isn't about financial circumstances. I just wanted to pen down whether it was possible to make a reasonable meal out of $1.
Conclusion, yes... and quite a good meal at that.
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