Braille Monitor                                    April 2018

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

Chicken Enchilada Soup
by Donna Wood

Donna is a retired human rights investigator who lives in Wichita. She is a past president of our affiliate and currently serves as second vice president. Here is what she says about this recipe: “This is my go-to soup that is super-fast and easy. It's so rich and creamy and guilt-free! It's packed with fiber and flavor. Pumpkin is the secret ingredient that makes the soup rich and creamy and adds fiber and vitamins.”

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1-1/2 cups chopped celery
1 medium chopped onion
1 large red pepper diced
3 cups fat-free chicken broth
3-1/2 cups (28 ounces) mild green enchilada sauce (use medium if you prefer more heat)
1 15-ounce can pure pumpkin
1 small deli-roast chicken, deboned, skinned, and torn into bite-sized pieces
1 7-ounce can mild green chilies
1-1/2 cups frozen white corn
1 package ranch-style salad dressing mix

Optional toppings:
crumbled queso fresco cheese
shredded cheddar cheese
crushed tortilla chips
chopped avocado
sour cream

Method: In a large pot, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Sauté the
celery, onion, and red pepper until slightly tender. Add the chicken broth, enchilada sauce, pumpkin, chicken, green chilies, corn, and dressing mix. Simmer for ten to fifteen minutes or longer. Serve with your choice of toppings.

Shrimp Pasta Salad
by Susan Tabor

Susan is a member who lives in Lawrence and is the wife of our first vice president Rob Tabor. She has hosted several cooking-related demos at recent Kansas conventions. She says this is so good that she loves to double the recipe when she makes it.

8 ounces elbow macaroni, uncooked
1 pound shrimp, cooked, drained, and chopped into chunks
1 cup chopped celery
1/2 cup diced green onions
1/2 cup chopped green pepper
2/3 cup mayonnaise
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon celery seeds
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1/4 cup diced red pepper, for sprinkling over top to add some color

Method: Cook elbow macaroni according to package directions. Combine all ingredients in a large bowl. Refrigerate for at least an hour so flavors can blend.

Crockpot Sloppy Joes
by Tom Page

Tom Page is the current president of the Kansas affiliate and is employed as a professional musician who lives in Wichita. He admits that the recipe is a little loose, “I’m not sure how to translate from number of “shakes” to actual measurements, so feel free to play with it.”

1/2 white onion, finely chopped
3/4 pound ground beef or turkey
1 small can tomato sauce
five shakes of salt
six to ten shakes of pepper
six to ten shakes of garlic powder (to taste)
three or four shakes of Italian seasoning

Method: Combine ground beef, tomato sauce, and onions in the crockpot. Add salt, pepper, garlic, and Italian seasoning; mix together. Cook on low for at least four hours. Spoon onto buns. Makes 4 to 6 sandwiches.

Pumpkin Bread
by Sharon Luka

This one is a real favorite of Kansas Federationists. Anyone who has attended our state conventions has probably enjoyed a loaf of Sharon Luka‘s famous pumpkin bread.

Sharon lives and works in Salina and serves as our affiliate secretary. Sharon modestly says, “This recipe was originally taken from a former NFB Braille paperback cookbook. I have made a few simple modifications.”

3-1/2 cups flour
3 cups sugar
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
4 eggs
1 15- or 16-ounce can of pumpkin
3/4 cup water
1 cup oil

Method: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix all dry ingredients thoroughly. Make a well in the mixture. In a separate bowl, beat four eggs. Add eggs, pumpkin, water, oil, and soda to dry ingredients and mix well. Pour into greased and floured medium-sized loaf pans. Place loaves on a cookie sheet (the cookie sheet is not required). Bake for approximately fifty minutes. 

Frosted Cappuccino Brownies
by Susan Tabor
These are wonderful, creamy, coffee-flavored, milk chocolate brownies. They freeze well too, according to Susan.

2 pounds milk chocolate chips
1/4 cup instant coffee granules or espresso powder
1 cup unsalted butter, softened
2 cups white sugar
8 eggs
3 tablespoons vanilla extract
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon salt
2 cups all-purpose flour

Method: Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Grease and flour four eight-by-eight-inch baking pans. Place the chocolate chips and the coffee granules in a double boiler over simmering water. Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until melted and smooth. Set aside. In a large bowl, cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs two at a time, mixing well after each addition. Stir in vanilla, cinnamon, and salt, then mix in the melted chocolate. Mix in flour until just blended. Divide the batter equally into the prepared pans, and spread smooth. Bake for thirty-five minutes in preheated oven, or until the edges pull from the sides of the pans. Cool on a wire rack. Cover and refrigerate for eight hours. Cut the cold brownies into bars to serve.

Frosting Ingredients:
1/2 cup butter, unsalted
4 cups powdered sugar
1 tsp vanilla
1/4 to 1/2 tsp cinnamon 
2 to 3 tablespoons strong-brewed coffee or espresso, cooled
1 to 2 tbsp milk or cream, optional, if needed for correct consistency
1/4 to 1/2 cup cream (if you want to make cappuccino buttercream)

Method: Cream together butter, powdered sugar, vanilla, cinnamon, and cream (if making buttercream instead of regular frosting) using a handheld mixer or stand mixer. If icing is too stiff, beat in either more coffee or some milk or cream to make a smooth, spreadable consistency.  

After frosting these brownies, the more they set, the better they taste as the flavors have more time to blend. Twenty-four hours is about ideal, but it’s hard to wait that long! Enjoy!

You can also experiment with the chocolates; use half milk chocolate chips and half dark chocolate ones, or all dark chocolate, or milk and bittersweet chips, or all bittersweet chips. Different varieties/strengths of the chocolate will play with the other flavors in their own ways, so you may want to adjust the flavors like cinnamon and coffee and vanilla according to your taste.

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