The "Get Out Of Your Car!" Fund

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Complete Classroom Kitchen

A few people online have said that living in a car brought on more bills than living in an apartment. Maybe they were just talking about food, since many mobile homeless people buy their meals one at a time and can't prepare their own foods in bulk.

This weekend I worked on the issue of how to cook and eat foods while living in my car and holding a teaching job. This weekend, I bought an electric skillet for $12 at Big Lots.

My plan was to purchase a whole lot of little appliances - a microwave popcorn popper, a single burner, a rice cooker, a hot pot for soups and tea, etc. Forget that. I'm going to try to use this electric skillet for all of that. Today I scrambled an egg with cheese (delicious!) and I popped popcorn (only 50% popped). I’ll also try toasting bread and cooking brown rice in it.

I have the skillet hidden behind the white Cricut die cut machine in my room.

This electric skillet + the school microwave + my toaster oven hiding under my desk = all that I need to have a full kitchen and cook all my foods

This is important not just so that I can be comfortable, but also so I can tell my family in the other state that I am cooking my own meals and keep my homelessness a secret. My mom knows I enjoy cooking and she will be suspicious if I haven’t cooked something in a while.

Well, that takes care of daytime weekday meals (as long as school is in - not on holidays and vacations). 

Weekends are still a challenge when it comes to eating. I’m trying to decide if I should buy a propane stove (faster, hotter) or use alcohol canisters (cheaper, safer in my car). I see myself using alcohol canisters to heat water for soup and tea on snowy or very cold days without ever having to leave my car. If I get the propane, I might as well invest in a two-burner stove and really cook a meal while at the park.

I also want to learn how to cook foods in aluminum foil. For that reason, I checked out books on camping yesterday. It was encrouaging to see different recipes on how to cook potatoes, corn, one-skillet meals (I need more recipes for that!). And, can I wrap Marie Callendar meals and other frozen dinners in aluminum foil and heat them up over a propane or alcohol stove over the weekends?

I used to eat somewhat on a schedule. Now I eat when I can. I went to a children’s ministry meeting Friday night and I took a salad with me. Lo and behold, Sis. Ella brought soup! It was good (although I missed cornbread). I saved the salad for the next day, and packed an extra bowl of soup to go.

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