The Braille Monitor                                                                      _______    December 1997

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This month's recipes are provided by members of the National Organization of Parents of Blind Children (NOPBC). This NFB division publishes a quarterly magazine called Future Reflections. Families with blind children and professionals who work with blind children and students and who embrace the NFB's positive philosophy about the abilities of and possibilities for blind youth belong to this nationwide organization and the many state and local groups that comprise it.

Santa's Whiskers
by Yvette Woods

Tom and Yvette Woods are the parents of Jessica, six, who is blind, and Katie, two. Tom is the active President of the New Mexico parent division.


1 cup butter or margarine
1 cup sugar
2 tablespoons milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup finely chopped red or green candied cherries
1/2 cup finely chopped pecans
1 cup flaked coconut

Method: In a large mixing bowl beat butter or margarine till softened. Add sugar and beat till fluffy. Add milk and vanilla and beat well. Add flour and beat till well mixed. Stir in cherries and pecans. Shape into three 7-inch rolls. Roll in coconut to coat. Wrap in waxed paper and chill for several hours or overnight. Cut into 1/4-inch slices. Place on an ungreased cookie sheet. Bake in a 375-degree oven about twelve minutes or till done. Remove and cool. Makes about eighty cookies.

a woman sits with a little girl in her lap and a boy standing beside her.
Debbie Day sits with daughter Brianna on her lap and son Tim beside her.

Chicken and White Bean Stew
by Debbie Day

Debbie Day and her family, including son Tim, live in Washington State. She chairs the Home-Schoolers Network in NOPBC. Debbie says that the following recipe is a one-dish chicken stew that makes its own gravy.


1 tablespoon olive oil
4 chicken thighs or enough chicken to feed four 4 small red-skinned potatoes (about 1 pound)
3 cloves garlic
1 14-16-ounce can chicken broth
2 teaspoons paprika
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon salt
approximately 2 pounds canned white beans

Method: Pour olive oil into a Dutch oven. Set on medium-high heat and add chicken thighs, skin side down. While they brown, cut the potatoes into 1-inch chunks and add to the pan. Peel and mince garlic and add to pan. When chicken is a deep brown, turn it over and add chicken broth, paprika, cumin, chili powder, and salt. Bring to boil, then reduce heat and simmer uncovered thirty minutes, stirring occasionally to keep potatoes submerged in juices. Drain white beans and add them to mix. Simmer five minutes more. Serve in wide bowls. Makes four large servings. Serve with slices of French bread for dunking and carrot sticks for crunching.

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Jude Lincicome hands a glass of punch to a child at the Braille Readers Are Leaders party in the dining room at the National Center for the Blind.

Green Tomato Pie Filling
by Jude Lincicome

Jude Lincicome is Second Vice President of the Maryland Organization of Parents of Blind Children. Jude has several adopted children with disabilities. Jeremy is blind. The two recipes she submitted were childhood favorites prepared by her mother. She says, "Having grown up enjoying these dishes, I can personally guarantee that both the pie and pudding are unbelievably delicious."


3 cups green tomatoes
1 1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup white sugar
1 or 2 thinly sliced lemons
1/2 cup raisins
1 teaspoon finely crushed cinnamon sticks
1 teaspoon powdered cinnamon
2 teaspoons flour
1/4 teaspoon salt

Method: Combine all ingredients in a mixing bowl. (A rolling pin works well for crushing cinnamon sticks.)

Use your favorite pastry recipe or the Bisquick recipe. This is a two-crust pie. Roll pastry 1/8-inch thick. Fit bottom crust into 9-inch pie pan. Sprinkle a tablespoon of flour on the bottom crust to absorb juice in baking. Spoon filling into shell. Dot filling with about half a stick of butter and cover with top crust. Seal edges and pinch one vent hole in center of top crust and five holes peripherally around the edge. Bake ten minutes at 400 degrees; reduce heat to 350 degrees and bake for thirty-five to forty minutes more.

Persimmon Pudding
by Jude Lincicome

Use native persimmons, not the store Orientals. Gather one to one and a half gallons of persimmons only after a good frost, and test one or two by taste before using. (You will know why if they are not ripe.) This is an old American Indian recipe. Wash persimmons and squeeze out the seeds. One cup of persimmon pulp makes two puddings.


1 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup nuts, preferably black walnuts
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon soda
1/2 cup raisins
1 cup seeded persimmon pulp
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/3 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla

Method: Combine all ingredients thoroughly. Grease two one-pound coffee tins (or equivalent vessels) and fill each half to two thirds full of mix. Bake at 325 degrees for one hour (and lick your chops). This is wonderful served warm with your favorite cold hard sauce as a topper.

Chicken Mozzarella
by Danielle Becker

Danielle and Dan Becker have been active members of the Maryland parents division for six years. Their daughter Rachel is blind. Danielle has recently chaired the fund-raising effort in her state division and was just elected First Vice President of the Maryland Organization of Parents of Blind Children. The following two recipes are family favorites.


boneless chicken breasts
jar of spaghetti sauce
sliced mozzarella cheese

Method: Brown chicken breasts in a small amount of oil in a pan until the chicken is cooked through. Spread some sauce in the bottom of the baking pan. Then place chicken in pan. Cover the chicken with more sauce, then arrange the slices of cheese on top of the chicken. Place the baking pan in a 350-degree oven for about 10 minutes or until the cheese melts and the sauce is bubbly. Serve with noodles or spaghetti and the remaining sauce. We enjoy garlic bread with this meal.

Banana Bread
by Danielle Becker

1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter
3 bananas--mashed
2 eggs
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 cups flour
cinnamon and ground cloves to taste, optional

Method: In mixing bowl, using electric mixer, combine all ingredients in the order listed. Pour batter into a greased and floured loaf pan and bake in a 300-degree oven for one hour to one hour and 15 minutes. A toothpick inserted in center should test clean. Allow loaf to cool a little in pan before removing to cool completely on a rack.

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TJ Dixon and his stepson Brian Watts.

Cathy Watts Dixon is a past member of the NOPBC Board of Directors, and TJ is President of the Missouri parents division. Cathy's son Brian took part in the panel discussion, "Fun, Friends, and Fitting in," which appears in the introductory issue of Future Reflections. These two recipes are great projects for kids, blind or otherwise, to make.

6 ounces butterscotch chips
6 ounces chocolate chips
4 cups crisp rice cereal

Method: In a 1-quart bowl microwave chips at fifty percent power for four to six minutes, stirring after three minutes. Add cereal, stirring well. Drop by teaspoonfuls onto waxed paper. Chill in refrigerator until cool. Store covered.

Peppermint Bark
by Cathy and TJ Dixon

1 pound almond bark
7 ounces peppermint candy
Method: Break bark into pieces and place in 3-quart bowl. Microwave at fifty percent for five to six minutes, until pieces are soft. Stir after three minutes. While bark is melting, process candy in food processor until it is a fine powder. Add candy to melted bark and stir well. Spread on waxed paper 1/8- to 1/4-inch thick. Cool in refrigerator until hard. Break into pieces. Store covered.

Seven-Flavor Pound Cake
by Loretta White

Loretta White is a long-time leader of the parents division in Maryland. This year she is serving as the organization's treasurer. Monitor readers are familiar with the Whites' ongoing struggles to get their daughter Niki the education she deserves in her local school district.

2 sticks margarine or butter
6 eggs
3 cups cake flour
3 cups sugar
1 cup sour cream
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoon rum flavoring
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon coconut flavoring
1/2 teaspoon lemon extract
1/2 teaspoon orange extract
1/2 teaspoon pineapple extract
1/2 teaspoon brandy flavoring

Note: the last five flavors can be any that you like; however, these are the five I recommend.

Method: Stir soda into sour cream. Set aside. Separate the eggs and set aside yolks. Beat egg whites until stiff. Set aside. Cream butter and sugar together. Add the egg yolks to the butter and sugar mixture, blend well. Add a couple of spoons of cake flour to the mixture and blend. Add the seven flavorings and blend. Alternate adding the cake flour and sour cream mixture, blending after each addition. Finally, fold in the beaten egg whites. The cake rises very high, so use an angel food cake pan or a bundt pan. Bake at 300 degrees for one hour and fifteen minutes. Let stand for ten minutes before removing from pan to cool completely on rack.