Braille Monitor                                                    March 2008

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This month�s recipes come from members of the National Federation of the Blind of New Mexico.

Dump Cake

by Elise Haley

Elise Haley is a retired teacher who taught in Texas and New Jersey before moving to Alamogordo, New Mexico. She taught seventh-grade math for twenty-five years. Then she started working part-time at New Mexico State University at Alamogordo, where she tutored in the Math Learning Center and taught some of the developmental math classes. While working there, she tutored several vision-impaired students. She and her husband currently try to provide transportation when the local transit system is not available.

1 box cake mix (yellow works best, but white is all right.)
1 can pie filling (cherry is particularly tasty)
1 can chopped pineapple
Chocolate chips, shredded coconut, or chopped pecans (optional)
1 or 2 sticks of butter (optional)

Method: Drain the pineapple and reserve the juice. Dump the pie filling into a glass 13-by-9-inch baking pan. Then combine the drained pineapple with the pie filling. If you wish to add chocolate chips, coconut, or pecans, this is the time to dump them in. Then sprinkle the dry cake mix over the fruit. Pour the reserved pineapple juice over the cake mix. Older versions of this recipe call for pouring melted butter over the cake mix. Some of us discovered that using fruit juice instead of butter works well. Bake at 350 degrees until the cake mix feels solid. Depending on the amount of fruit, this will take thirty-five to forty-five minutes. If you still feel dry spots in the cake mix, drizzle water over them.

Other fruits from fresh apricots to apple pie filling work fairly well. If you use fresh apricots, you will need some additional sweetening to keep the cake from being too tart. This cake can be served warm or chilled. Do not use a dark juice such as grape on the top. It makes the surface look dark, so some people may think it is burned.

Oat Scones

by Jim Babb

Jim Babb has now lived in New Mexico for the past seven years after retiring from the Ohio Rehabilitation Services Commission. Jim really isn't retired; he does lots of volunteer work. He is president of the Friends of the New Mexico Library for the Blind, is a board member of the New Mexico Goodwill, is second vice president of the Albuquerque Chapter, and is a board member of the New Mexico affiliate.

2/3 cup butter, melted
1/3 cup milk
1 egg
1 1/2 cups flour
1 1/2 cups old fashioned Quaker oats (or 1 1/4 cups quick Quaker oats)
1/4 cup sugar
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup raisins or currants

Method: Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In a large bowl combine all dry ingredients. Combine butter, milk, and egg and add them to the dry ingredients; mix just until dry ingredients are moistened. Stir in raisins. Shape dough to form ball; pat out on lightly floured surface to form an eight-inch circle. Cut into eight wedges. Transfer to a greased cookie sheet and bake in a preheated 400-degree oven for twelve to fifteen minutes or until scones are light golden brown. Serve with butter and preserves or honey as desired.

Fat-Free Chocolate Truffles

by Veronica Smith

Veronica Smith is a volunteer in Rio Rancho, New Mexico. She volunteers several times a week in the Martin Luther King Jr. Elementary School reading program. In addition she makes presentations on blindness at other elementary schools. She is also learning a lot about eating wisely at Weight Watchers. She reports that last year she lost fifty-one pounds and now feels great.

1 8-ounce package fat-free cream cheese
1 cup powdered sugar, sifted
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons cocoa powder, divided
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Method: Cream together all ingredients except two tablespoons cocoa powder. Sprinkle the remaining two tablespoons of cocoa on a sheet of wax paper. Form twenty-four balls of candy from the cream cheese mixture and roll them one at a time in the powdered cocoa. Place on a cookie sheet and refrigerate overnight. Transfer to store in an air-tight container. If you are counting calories, you should know that these scrumptious little treats are only fifty calories each.

Nancy and Don BurnsStrawberry Bread

by Nancy Burns

Nancy Burns, immediate past president of the NFB of California, recently moved to Albuquerque, New Mexico. She spent most of her life in California and served six years as the affiliate president. She has always enjoyed baking, and now that she is retired, she has more time to be creative in the kitchen. This is an original bread recipe.

1 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup oil
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
2 cups strawberries, chopped
1/2 cup pecans, chopped
1 teaspoon strawberry flavoring

Method: Combine oil, sugar, and eggs. Then add flavoring and chopped strawberries. Combine flour, salt, and baking powder. Add this mixture and chopped nuts to sugar mixture. Mix thoroughly. Pour batter into a 9-by-5-inch loaf pan that has been sprayed with cooking spray. Bake at 350 degrees for fifty-five to sixty minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool on rack and enjoy with a cup of coffee.

Fudge Brownies with an Attitude

by Don Burns

After serving as legislative representative for the National Federation of the Blind of California, Don retired in late 2006. Don and his wife Nancy moved to Albuquerque, New Mexico, where Don spends the summer months working in his garden.

1 box of your favorite fudge brownie mix
1 tablespoon red chili powder (or more if your taste buds desire)
1 scoop of vanilla ice cream

Method: Prepare brownies according to package directions, but add chili powder to dry mixture at the beginning. Bake brownies as directed and cool on rack. Place a scoop of ice cream on top of warm brownie and enjoy.

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