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January Disease

Welcome 2018! I have a feeling that this year will breeze right past us same as the previous year, I never saw how that one went… But whatever you set out to do this year, I wish you every success.

By Edith

So, I’ve been on leave for a while now and this has given me time to be more active on social media and I have seen how the posts started with people sending pictures of feasts and these have quickly changed to people posting jokes about how the cabbage has moved from being a salad to being the main relish.

January disease, it is called. This may sound funny to some people but this is reality with the majority. I do acknowledge however that there are some who may not even have enjoyed the feasting of the festive season due to various reasons among them their inability to access the money to fund the feasts.

So what exactly is January disease? Well for starters it is not a physical disease. It is a financial disease. It occurs when people have used up more money than they were supposed to during the December period which consists of two major celebrations i.e. Christmas and New Year. What makes the “disease” worse is that January sees the increase of other obligations like rentals, school fees and other financial obligations.

So in addition to having overspent during the holidays one is then also faced with additional financial obligations. This financial ‘disease’ can turn into a physical disease if what is left is much lower than what is required, creating anxiety and stress which can manifest as physical diseases like high blood pressure, depression etc.

So during the month of January I will be posting recipes of low budget meals that will help us get through the January disease. These will be ideally for a family of four. This week I start by making one of my nephews favourite meals, rice and beans. This meal will ideally cost on average $6.00 which is about $1.50 per person.

It is nutritious and balanced as it consists of starch, protein and vegetables. Onto the recipe:

Rice and Beans Curry

2 cups dried sugar beans, pre-boiled

3 cups rice

4 tablepoons cooking oil

1 onion, finely chopped

2 tomatoes, chopped

4 cloves garlic, crushed

1cm root ginger, chopped

1 tsp black pepper

1 tsp mild curry powder

1 cup diced carrots

2 cups water

Salt to taste


In a medium sized pot boil 4 cups of water. Add a teaspoon of salt and a tablespoon of cooking oil. Add the rice and boil, reduce heat when rapidly boiling. Simmer about 20min until done.

In a large pot heat the 3 tablespoons cooking oil and add the onions, garlic and ginger. Add the black pepper and curry powder and saute till onions are translucent. Add the tomatoes and carrots.

Add ½ cup water and simmer 10min. Add the beans, salt to taste and the remainder of the water, simmer 15min. Simmer 5min. Serve with the cooked rice.

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