Saturday, 19 March 2011



One half kilogram of beef rib, freshly cut, at my local Kajitula market.


One kilogram of tomatoes, One kilogram of carrots, one kilogram of onions, one kilogram of flat beans, one half kilogram of potatoes, 2 bunches of coriander, 20 chilli peppers, 2 unknown to me variety of cucumberesque vegetables.

150 Taka is the total cost of the contents of both photographs.

This is about 2 American dollars or 1.50 British pounds. It might seem pretty cheap, but in a country where a labourer makes 150 taka a day and a child labourer makes 100 taka a’s pretty steep.

The same 150 taka will get you 2 kilograms of rice and 1 kilogram of lentils.

So many choices for us, so few for many others. We have the option to actually follow what often seem to be crazy food guidelines in the U.S. or U.K. Just look at these two pictures and we see a Eat well plate, Food pagoda, Food pyramid or whatever pictorial device your country uses to show proportions of food.

I am not being scientific here, simply realistic. We need to decrease our animal protein intake dramatically in order to become healthier, save money, and decrease environmental degradation due to the present system of animal protein production.

A bit of red meat aint gonna kill anyone, a big ole pile of cooked vegetables and salads will help you out alot nutritionally and focusing your meals around cheap and healthy whole grains and fibre rich vegetable proteins such as lentils and beans will not only add to your health, but keep lots more money in your pocket.

I love my breakfasts of hard boiled egg, a bit of cheese, tea, carrots, tomatoes, cucumbers that can be quickly assembled for an on the go breakfast here in Sylhet and sometimes I simply crave a bit of roti and tea at the end of the day. We all need to eat a bit more like one elder lunch lady from East London said while she was participating in public sector cookery training “... like a king for breakfast, a prince for lunch and a pauper for supper...”

In the end, we don’t simply buy dinner at the market, we are paying for our family’s health and well being...and as the adage goes....You get what you pay for!!!!

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