Slow Food USA has laid down a challenge to Americans: Create a “slow food” meal for 5 bucks or less. A slow food meal, for those not familiar with the movement, is one that’s made using whole ingredients, preferably locally sourced, rather than processed foods.
“This challenge is about taking back the ‘value meal,’” said Josh Viertel, president of Slow Food USA.
The $5 Challenge launched September 17 with a Day of Action, which included hundreds of gatherings across the nation. People are encouraged to sign up online with a pledge to prepare a slow food meal for $5 or less per person, or to participate in one of a range of Slow Food potlucks being organized nationwide. The $5 target was chosen as a comparison to a typical fast food meal.
The Challenge is at least in part a response to first lady Michelle Obama’s challenge to the country to end the childhood obesity epidemic within a generation, organizers say.
So, how do you prepare a meal with whole ingredients for less than five dollars? Slow Food spokespersons suggest using inexpensive ingredients such as beans—which are not only cheap, but also a great source of protein and fiber. Dried beans like black beans or chick peas cost just pennies per serving and are so versatile—ideal in salads or things like burritos with just a small portion of meat. Add some fresh produce and spices and a frugal meal is well within reach, say the folks with Slow Food.
For more information on the Slow Food $5 Meal Challenge, including recipe ideas, you can visit SlowFoodUSA.org/5Challenge.
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