Braille Monitor                                             October 2015

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This month’s recipes are from the National Federation of the Blind of West Virginia.

Mama’s Easy No-Yeast Dinner Rolls
by Sandy Streets

Sandy is the secretary/treasurer of the Harrison County Chapter. Sandy is very creative and enjoys doing crafts and crocheting.

1 cup flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup milk
2 tablespoons mayonnaise

Method: Combine all ingredients. Spoon batter into a greased muffin pan. Bake in a preheated oven at 350 degrees for fifteen minutes or until golden brown. Makes five to six rolls.

Easy Potato Soup
by Charlene Smyth

Charlene SmythCharlene is the president of the West Virginia affiliate and of the Harrison County Chapter. She has worked for twenty years as an office assistant for the West Virginia Division of Rehabilitation Services. Charlene has a good friend, Tina, to thank for this recipe.

1 bag of frozen hash browns (30- or 32-ounce bag, the round ones, not shredded)
1 32-ounce carton chicken broth
1 can cream of celery soup
1 can cream of chicken soup
1 8-ounce package cream cheese (not fat-free, but 1/3 less fat is okay)
Bacon bits to taste
Chopped onions to taste
Chopped celery or celery salt to taste

Method: Combine all ingredients in pot. Let cook until potatoes are tender, or throw in the crockpot in the morning. When the potatoes are done, or when you return home, slice up and add cream cheese, let melt. You can top your bowl of soup with shredded cheddar cheese if desired. I always double the recipe, so I use a combination of cream cheese and Cheese Whiz. I like the mix, although you could use Cheese Whiz instead of cream cheese.

Spicy Shrimp and Pasta
by Sheri Koch

Sheri KochSheri is the president of the Kanawha Valley Chapter and the legislative chairperson for her affiliate.

6 ounces linguine
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 medium onion, slivered
4 mini tri-colored sweet peppers, sliced
12 ounces uncooked small or medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
2 cups tomato juice
1/2 cup tomato sauce
2 teaspoons Sriracha sauce
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1/4 cup white wine
2 tablespoons minced fresh basil or 1 teaspoon dried basil

Method: Cook linguine according to package directions. Meanwhile, in a large nonstick skillet, sauté garlic, onion, and peppers in oil for three minutes. Stir in the shrimp and sauté for three or four minutes. Add tomato juice, tomato sauce, Sriracha and basil. (If using fresh basil, add at the end.) In a small bowl, combine cornstarch and wine until smooth; stir into skillet. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, for five or six minutes until shrimp is done and sauce is thickened. Stir drained linguine into sauce. Enjoy! Yields four servings.

Baked Rigatoni
by Karen Haught

Karen is the board member for the Sightless Workers’ Guild of Wheeling Chapter as well as executive director for the Seeing Hand Association.

1 pound of rigatoni
1 pound of sage or Italian sausage crumbled
8 ounces of pepperoni
1 quart of favorite marinara, homemade or jarred
2 cups of shredded mozzarella cheese
Grated parmesan cheese

Method: Preheat oven to 375. Cook pasta in salted water according to al dente time. Brown sausage in a skillet and drain, slightly brown pepperoni in same skillet and drain. Heat sauce together with sausage and pepperoni in skillet. Drain pasta and place in large shallow baking dish. Stir in meat sauce. Mix in half of the cheese and top with the remainder of the cheese. Grate some parmesan on top. Bake uncovered for about half an hour or until slightly browned and bubbly. For variation, add eight ounces of ricotta cheese with the other ingredients--makes it more like lasagna. Get an extra jar of sauce to top with after it is cooked if you like it saucier.

Ed and Karen’s Italian Hash
by Karen McDonald

Karen McDonaldKaren McDonald is a member-at-large of the West Virginia affiliate. She is the wife of longtime member and first vice president Ed McDonald. She has been a member of the affiliate for over twenty years, and she serves as its state secretary. She is also a musician and a partner in the couple's broadcast production business, EIO Productions.

The McDonalds put this recipe together one evening when they didn't have all the necessary ingredients for the dish they had in mind, and they ended up with a concoction that turned out to be a favorite.

2 pounds ground beef
2 peppers
2 or more onions, depending on size
1 28-ounce can tomatoes or two fourteen-ounce cans
1 tablespoon salt
1 tablespoon fresh garlic
1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
1 box of any kind of macaroni

Method: Brown ground beef, drain. Cook macaroni according to package directions. Grease slow cooker, add all ingredients and cook for three to five hours on high or seven to nine hours on low.

Orange Cream Cupcakes
by Sheena Struble

Sheena StrubleSheena has lived in a variety of places including Delaware, Maryland, Pennsylvania, and now, fortunately for us, West Virginia. She has a long work history as an executive with AT&T, but is now retired. Sheena is a member of the Kanawha Valley Chapter of the National Federation of the Blind of West Virginia and holds our newly established office, Chef and Cook. We are fortunate to have her aboard.


1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs, room temperature
2/3 cup granulated sugar
1 1/2 sticks (12 tablespoons) butter
2 teaspoons finely grated orange zest
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon orange extract
1 cup sour cream

3/4 cup fresh orange juice
1 8-ounce package cream cheese, room temperature
10 tablespoons butter, cut into pieces, room temperature
1 cup confectioners' sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon orange extract
2 teaspoons finely grated orange zest
6 drops yellow food coloring (optional)
2 drops red food coloring (optional)

Method: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and line muffin pans with cupcake liners. Whisk the flour, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl. Beat the eggs, granulated sugar, and butter in a large bowl with a mixer on medium-high speed until pale and fluffy, about two minutes. Reduce the speed to medium low, then add the orange zest, vanilla, and orange extract. Beat half of the flour mixture into the butter mixture. Then beat in the sour cream and end with the remaining flour mixture. Beat until just combined (do not over mix). Divide the batter evenly among the muffin cups, filling each muffin cup about two-thirds full. Bake until a toothpick inserted into the centers comes out clean, about eighteen minutes. Let cool five minutes; then remove the cupcakes from the muffin tins to a rack to cool completely.

Meanwhile, make the frosting. Bring the orange juice to a boil in a saucepan; reduce the heat to medium and simmer until reduced to 1 1/2 tablespoons, about eight minutes. Let cool. Beat the cream cheese in a large bowl with a mixer on medium-high speed until smooth and fluffy. Beat in the butter, a little at a time, until smooth. Reduce the mixer speed to low; sift the confectioners' sugar into the bowl and beat until smooth. Add the vanilla, the cooled orange syrup, orange extract, orange zest and food coloring and beat on medium speed until combined. Refrigerate if needed until spreadable, about fifteen minutes. Spread the frosting on the cupcakes.

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