Braille Monitor                          October 2018

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Recipes this month come from the National Federation of the Blind of Maryland.

Apricot Orange Jell-O Salad

by Debbie Brown

Debbie BrownDebbie serves as first vice president of the NFB of Maryland. She is also the president of the Sligo Creek chapter. She says, “This is a recipe that is refreshing in summer and festive in winter.”

1 15-ounce can apricot halves, drained
1 15-ounce can mandarin orange segments, drained
1 15-ounce can pineapple chunks, drained
1 3-ounce package apricot or orange Jell-O
1 cup water
8 ounces sour cream

Method: Combine apricots, oranges, and pineapple in a large bowl. Mix Jell-O with one cup boiling water and add to bowl. Mix in the sour cream. Chill for several hours.

Maryland Crab Cakes

by Darlene Barrett

Darlene Barrett is a member of the board of directors of the NFBMD. She also serves as president of the Central Maryland chapter. No list of Maryland recipes would be complete without crab cakes.

1 pound backfin crabmeat or any lump crabmeat
8 saltine crackers
1 egg, beaten
2 tablespoons mayonnaise
1 teaspoon mustard
1/4 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1/2 teaspoon Old Bay seasoning
Salt to taste
2 tablespoons vegetable oil

Method: Place crabmeat in bowl and check for shells. In another bowl, finely crush crackers and add remaining ingredients. Gently fold in crabmeat, just enough to combine all ingredients. Shape into six crab cakes and refrigerate for one hour. Heat two tablespoons of vegetable oil in nonstick frying pan. Sauté crab cakes until golden brown.

Curried Sweet Potato Soup

by Ellen Ringlein

Ellen RingleinEllen Ringlein is president of the Greater Baltimore Chapter. Ellen also runs the NFB Independence Market.

1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 medium onion, diced
1 medium or 2 small sweet potatoes, thinly sliced (2 to 3 cups)
1 or 2 carrots, thinly sliced
1 zucchini or yellow squash, thinly sliced
2 cups chicken or vegetable broth
1/2 teaspoon to 1 teaspoon curry powder
1/4 cup Marsala cooking wine

Method: In a large sauce pan, heat oil over medium heat; add onion and sauté until soft. Add sweet potato, carrots, zucchini, broth, and curry powder. Cover and simmer until vegetables are very tender, stirring occasionally. Add Marsala wine before vegetables are fully tender. Transfer soup to blender and puree in batches. Gently reheat soup. Add salt and pepper to taste.


by Ronza Othman

Ronza OthmanRonza is a member of the board of directors of the NFBMD. She also serves as first vice president of the Greater Baltimore Chapter. This is a traditional Palestinian dish—perhaps the most commonly served meal. Serve it with a side of plain yogurt or a thinly sliced salad of tomatoes, cucumber, lemon, and olive oil. It serves approximately six people.
4 cups white rice
chicken (cut up whole chicken or chicken pieces depending on preference)
2 cauliflowers
4 potatoes
2 onions
1 cup water
garlic powder
other preferred seasonings

Method: Peel the onions, cut them, and layer them at the bottom of a large pot. Onions should be in strips or rounds and should fully cover the bottom of the pot. Layer the chicken pieces over the onions. Add cinnamon, cardamom, garlic powder, pepper, salt, and other preferred seasoning. Tip: Seasoning blends work well, but there is no right or wrong seasoning. Add one cup of water and turn the heat on under the pot with the chicken and onions. Allow to cook for about twenty minutes until the onions are soft. The chicken will not be fully cooked. Soak four cups of rice in very hot water with salt. This will make the rice absorb other flavors. After twenty minutes of soaking, drain and rinse the rice.

Cut up the cauliflower and potatoes so that they are small enough to deep fry. The potatoes should be half an inch thick or thinner. Deep fry the cauliflower and potatoes and set aside to drain. Cauliflower is done when golden brown and crispy, and potatoes are done when golden brown and soft inside. Tip: Vegetables can be baked instead of deep-fried if going for a lower calorie option, but this takes longer—just spray them with cooking spray prior to baking. Once onions are soft, layer the cauliflower and potatoes over the chicken with the cauliflower on one side and the potatoes on the other. Layer the rice over the cauliflower and potatoes. Add hot water so that it comes up just over the level of the rice and cover the pot. Turn on the heat under the pot on medium for about thirty minutes or until the water evaporates and the rice is tender. You can test to see if the water has evaporated by inserting a wooden spoon into the pot all the way to the bottom. If it comes out wet, then there is still water that needs to evaporate. As the water gets closer to fully evaporating, reduce the heat to low.

Once the water has evaporated, turn off the heat. Remove the pot’s lid. Use a large pan—it must be significantly larger in width than the pot. With both hands (and oven mitts), flip the pot over so it is upside-down onto the pan, now with the onions and chicken on the bottom and the rice on top. This lets the flavors reabsorb into the elements of the meal a second time. Serve.

Chocolate Chip Cookies

by Melissa Riccobono

Melissa RiccobonoIn addition to being the First Lady of the Federation, Melissa is a member of the board of directors of the NFBMD, and she is president of the Maryland Parents of Blind Children Division. She says, “These cookies are a bit famous around our kids’ school; we have made them several times for various teachers, and everyone who tries them loves them!”

1 cup soft butter
1 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 cup boiling water
1 teaspoon vanilla
1-1/4 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups quick oats
1 12-ounce package chocolate chips

Method: Cream butter and sugar. Dissolve baking soda in boiling water and stir into mixture. Add vanilla, then dry ingredients. Add chocolate chips. Drop onto cookie sheet. (The recipe says ungreased, but I usually grease just to be safe.) Bake at 350 degrees for ten to twelve minutes.

No-Bake Pineapple Cheese Pie

by Ellen Ringlein

1/2 cup boiling water
1 envelope unflavored Knox gelatin
One small can crushed pineapple, drained, reserve liquid
One small can of pineapple rings (8 rings), drained, reserve liquid
1/2 pineapple juice from reserve liquid
2 8-ounce bars cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup sugar
1 9-inch graham cracker pie crust

Method: Dissolve gelatin in boiling water. Add pineapple juice and stir well. Combine this mixture with cream cheese and sugar. Blend with hand mixer until smooth. Spoon half cream cheese mixture into pie crust. Layer the crushed pineapple on top. Cover with remaining cheese mixture. Garnish with pineapple rings. Cover with inverted plastic pie cover, crimping the aluminum edges of the pie plate to hold the top securely. Chill for several hours before serving.

Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies

by Janice Toothman

Janice Toothman is a member of the board of directors of the Sligo Creek Chapter of the NFBMD. She also chairs the NFBMD Deaf-Blind Committee. Janice is a prolific baker at various auction fundraisers. Everyone wants to buy her items, so she makes our events very successful.

1/2 cup softened butter
1 cup sugar
2 ounces unsweetened baker’s chocolate
1 egg, beaten
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup flour
1 1/2 cups oatmeal

Method: Preheat oven to 325 degrees. In large bowl, cream together butter and sugar. Place chocolate in microwavable bowl, and microwave on high for one minute. Stir. If chocolate is not all melted, microwave an additional minute. Add creamed mixture to melted chocolate. Add beaten egg to bowl after bowl is cool to the touch. Add baking powder and salt. Mix well. Add flour and oatmeal. Stir well. Drop by teaspoon onto greased baking sheet, twelve cookies to a sheet. Bake for twelve minutes. Yields approximately three dozen cookies.

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