I have noticed from reading a number of blogs that being poor in the country is vastly different from being poor in the city. One of the main differences is with food. I draw on my own experiences growing up for this post.
Venison is probably the main source of protein for poor people in the country. You can always shoot one deer per person but sometimes more depending on the season. One can usually count on a neighbor or relative to give you an unwanted deer. You cut up the deer yourself because it costs money to pay a butcher. Typically you would have venison steaks and maybe venison burger. You can also supplement your protein supply for the year with pheasant, duck, maybe turtle and possibly either bear or moose. If you are a little better off, you might have homegrown chickens but it would cost to feed them so that's a maybe.
Potatoes would likely be your main starch for the entire year. You need to grow enough potatoes for the entire year. You can make mashed potatoes, fried potatoes, baked potatoes and lefse. There is no such thing as too many potatoes.
For vegetables, you need to grow and can your veggies. Green beans, beets, peas, and corn are the main staples. You would also typically have homemade pickles and jellies. Milk can be bought much cheaper from a local dairy farmer.
A cheap meal for the country folk is "cheapy mac". This is the cheapest mac n cheese (usually 4 for a buck) combined with cooked ground venison. You can feed a family of 6 for 50 cents.
It is a bit odd to me that because of these habits growing up, it shapes how I still think about food. I still like venison steaks and can still help butcher a deer with no problem. I could eat potatoes every day. I have gotten back into canning and I really like it. I will not ever go back to eating Cheapy Mac. I do draw the line there. The other side is that I will always love buying food and have slight hoarding tendencies with regard to food. I am constantly aware of this and struggle with it.
Is your relationship with food now shaped by your childhood relationship with food? Can anybody else relate to being poor in the country?