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Cooking for the Holidays

As Thanksgiving and the holiday season approach, whether you’re hosting a meal, preparing goodies for visitors, or creating tasty gifts, some tips on planning can help the process along. Following are some tips from VisionAware for cooks who are blind or visually impaired:

Decide What to Prepare: Assess your skill level regarding what you can do easily and tailor recipe choices accordingly. If you are not very experienced and/or are still learning adaptive techniques, plan gifts like “dump, mix, and go appetizers, candies, and desserts,” easy-to-prepare dishes, or jarred mixes. Those who are more advanced can make items such as baked goods from scratch.

“Make a List and Check It Twice:” Use braille, large print, a digital recorder, or smart phone to record what you will need. Check your refrigerator or pantry to determine what you already have in stock.

Shop, But Not Until You Drop: Consider using grocery delivery services, like Amazon Fresh,, or those offered through large grocery store chains, or companies like Instacart. Delivery may be free and even if there is a fee, it may be comparable to a paratransit round trip.

Schedule Tasks: Determine what can be prepared the day before a get-together or, if on the actual day, consider scheduling “in 15-minute increments” up until the time to serve. Plan what cooking implements will be needed as well.

Ask for Help: Most guests are glad to assist, whether it’s carving the turkey, serving the food, or clean up.

For more details and additional tips, check out the article on Cooking for the Holidays When You Are Blind or Visually Impaired.