The food industry has been under quite a lot of scrutiny these days, drawing even more attention since the release of Fed Up, a documentary narrated by Katie Couric about how the food and sugar industries have contributed to the obesity epidemic in the United States. However, despite all of the hype, Leanne Brown, a recent New York University Food Studies graduate, made an important observation during her capstone project: “It bothered me that so many ideas for fixing the food system leave out the poor; it seemed like they didn’t have a voice in the food movement.”
Enter Good and Cheap, a cookbook that Ms. Brown created for the final project of her Masters Program, designed specifically for individuals in the federal government’s Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). SNAP currently provides 46.2 million low-income people with an average stipend of $126 per month in the form of a debit card. This cookbook is full of recipes that “anyone” can make on a budget of just $4 a day, complete with beautiful color pictures to inspire even the most novice of chefs.
About developing her cookbook, Ms. Brown said, “Ultimately, Good and Cheap was a guess...I thought that an appealing, tasty, practical, healthy set of recipes was genuinely needed. I thought that maybe it could make a difference for some. It seems like it has.” Since the cookbook was posted to Ms. Brown’s website in early June, it has been downloaded over 200,000 times. She also raised $145,000 to print hard copies of the book for people without computer access.
Ms. Brown summarizes the issue best in the introduction of her cookbook, stating “There are thousands of barriers that can keep us from eating in a way that nourishes our bodies and satisfies our tastes. Money just needn’t be one of them.”
To access Good and Cheap, visit Ms. Brown’s website, here.
Nonprofit organizations can pre-order hard copies of Good and Cheap in bulk for a reduced price of $4 each by clicking here.