Braille Monitor                                              March 2014

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Recipes

This month’s recipes have been provided by members of the National Federation of the Blind of New York.

Sheet Cake
by Margo Downey

Margo DowneyMargo Downey has been a member of the NFB since 1979. She serves on the boards of the Buffalo Chapter, the National Association of Guide Dog Users, the Travel and Tourism Division, and the Seniors Division.

Ingredients:
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups granulated sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon baking soda
Pinch of salt
3/4 cup water
1/2 cup butter
1/4 cup unsweetened powdered cocoa
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup buttermilk
2 eggs

Method: Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Spray a 13-by-9-inch cake pan with non-stick cooking spray and shake flour onto pan, coating all sides. In a large bowl combine flour, sugar, cinnamon, baking soda, and salt and stir to mix thoroughly. Combine water, butter, and cocoa in a saucepan and bring to a boil, stirring to prevent lumping. Remove from heat and pour into flour mixture. Beat with mixer until blended and then add vanilla, buttermilk, and eggs and beat until smooth. Pour batter into pan and bake for twenty to twenty-five minutes. Allow cake to cool before frosting with the following icing:

Frosting Ingredients:
1 cup sugar
1/3 cup milk
1/3 cup butter
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips

Method: In a saucepan combine sugar, milk, and butter and bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Remove from heat and stir in chocolate chips until melted. Spread over cake and allow to cool for at least one hour before cutting.

Best Apple Crisp Ever
by Margo Downey
Ingredients:
4 apples, peeled, cored, and sliced
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cup white sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 egg, beaten
2 tablespoons butter, melted

Method: Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a 9-inch square baking pan mix sliced apples with brown sugar. In a large bowl mix together flour, white sugar, cinnamon, and salt. In a small bowl beat together egg and cooled melted butter. Stir into flour mixture. Spread this batter evenly over apples. Bake in preheated oven for thirty to forty minutes or until topping is golden and crisp. Serve warm with ice cream.

Super Fudge Brownies
by Margo Downey

Ingredients:
5 large eggs
3½ cups granulated sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter
1 8-ounce box unsweetened baking chocolate, coarsely chopped
1 tablespoon instant espresso powder
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt

Method: Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Set rack in upper third of oven. Line a 9-by-13-inch baking pan with a large sheet of foil, pressing foil so that it fits into the pan. Lightly butter foil. In large bowl with electric mixer on high speed beat eggs, sugar, and vanilla for ten minutes, until blended. Meanwhile, in a glass measuring cup microwave butter and chocolate until almost melted. Stir in espresso powder until combined. Reduce mixer speed to low and add chocolate mixture until blended. Mix in flour and salt until just combined. Pour batter into prepared pan and bake for twenty-five minutes, until top is shiny and slightly cracked along the edges. Brownies will still be soft and gooey in the middle. Do not over bake. Transfer to wire rack to cool. When completely cool, use foil edges to lift brownies out of pan. Cover and let sit at least four hours before cutting.
Tip: Lining the pan with foil makes for easy cleanup. Just lift the entire cooled brownie block out of the pan, then cut into twenty-four individual brownies.

Arroz con Gandules (Rice with Pigeon Peas)
by Cheryl Echevarria

Nelson and Cheryl EchevarriaCheryl Echevarria is vice president of the Greater Long Island Chapter of the NFB of New York and president of the Travel and Tourism Division. She says that this is the first thing her husband Nelson taught her to make when they first met. This is an old recipe, but each family makes it a little differently. This version makes enough for five to six people and can be used for leftovers.

Ingredients:
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 8-ounce can tomato sauce
1 cup sofrito, see below
1 handful of alcaparado olives in jar, not the ones in a can (Find them in the Spanish section of the supermarket.)
1 tablespoon cumin or cumino powder
2 cups rice, uncooked
Gandules (available in all grocery stores, or ask for pigeon peas if you cannot pronounce the Spanish name) If you are using the can, rinse them first; if you are using frozen peas, use 1 bag.
4 cups water
Salt and pepper to taste

Method: Turn stove burner to medium high, place a large pot with a fitted lid on stove with the olive oil in it. Add the sofrito, alcaparado olives, and cumin and stir all together. Add tomato sauce and the rice and stir thoroughly. Then add the gandules and stir again. Add the water and raise the heat to high. Once everything starts to boil, put the lid on and lower heat to low. Cook for twenty-five minutes. Do not lift the lid to stir until time is up.

Sofrito Ingredients:
3 large onions, any type
1 full head of garlic
5 to 6 plum tomatoes or 1 large can of chopped or diced tomatoes
2 green bell peppers, seeded
1 red bell pepper, seeded
10 ajies dulces peppers, tops removed (If you cannot pronounce the name, just bring this recipe to the grocery store and ask for them. They are tiny green peppers, but remember to ask for the sweet ones. They look like Scotch bonnet peppers, and they are hot.)
A bunch of cilantro leaves with the stems still on
A bunch of recao or culantro leaves

Method: In no particular order place everything in the food processor or a heavy-duty blender like a Vitamix. You might have to purée in batches and then mix all together when done. I do this all the time. This can be added to soups, stews, tomato sauce, or anything else hot that you are cooking. This recipe makes a good deal, so have a large storage container ready.

Angie's Peanut Butter Pie
by Angie Robinson

Angie RobinsonAngie Robinson is the first lady of the Buffalo Chapter of the NFB of New York.

Ingredients:
8 ounces cream cheese, softened
2 cups confectionery sugar
1 cup milk
1 cup peanut butter
2 graham cracker crusts
1 container Cool Whip

Method: Cream together cream cheese, peanut butter, and confectionery sugar. Add milk and mix well. Fill the two pie crusts, place in freezer, and let freeze for several hours or until firm. Top with Cool Whip and garnish with chocolate chips or shaved chocolate. Refreeze. To serve, remove from freezer about twenty minutes beforehand or in Florida about ten minutes.

Butterscotch Brownies
by Mike Robinson

Michael Robinson]Mike Robinson is president of the Buffalo Chapter and second vice president of the NFB of New York.

Ingredients:
1/4 cup butter
1 cup brown sugar, packed
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2/3 cup flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 cup nuts, chopped

Method: Melt butter and stir in brown sugar. Then beat in the egg and vanilla extract. Combine dry ingredients and stir in. Add nuts and stir. Pour batter into a greased 9-by-9-inch baking pan and bake in a preheated 350-degree oven for thirty minutes. Cut while still warm.

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