Many individuals may be intimidated to cook in the kitchen; for those who have vision loss, the intimidation factor may heighten. Preparing meals at home should not be a scary task to do, especially if you know the right meal tips and safety tricks for your condition. By adapting a few kitchen accessories and utensils, the user should be able to create an enjoyable cooking environment.
Cutting and Chopping
• Use cutting boards that are high contrast with your food. For instance, use a white cutting board for a red bell pepper or a dark cutting board with a white onion.
• A pizza cutter can be used for sandwiches, quesadillas, and other flatter foods.
• Knives typically have a curve towards the point. To identify the sharp side, try rocking the knife back and forth on the cutting board or hard surface. If it rocks, use that side downwards to cut the food.
• While cutting, always tuck your fingertips behind your knuckles (towards your palm while holding the item) to avoid slicing them. The knife’s side can rest along the middle link of your finger and will dodge sharp parts cutting flesh.
• Use measuring spoons or cups that have large print and contrasting colors from the ingredients.
• Individual spoons and cups may be easier to measure desired amounts rather than using large cups with markings.
• When measuring spices, consider dipping the clean measuring spoon into the spice container and leveling the amount with the lid; this can avoid over pouring.
• When measuring liquids, touch the container and the measuring cup together while pouring to be sure the liquid goes into the cup. If the liquid is cold, you can use a clean finger as a guide to know when the glass is almost full. For hot liquids, consider measuring the liquid out as cold first and then heating in the microwave or stove.
Oven and Stove Top Safety
• Wear oven mitts that come up high on the arm.
• Turn off stove top flames if needing to reach across the stove top to switch knobs or grab something.
• Pull the oven racks slightly out of the oven when removing items. This will eliminate reaching into the oven and potentially burning yourself.
• If needing to flip foods, it may be easier to use a pair of tongs to grab the item.
• Consider using rubber bands on canned goods to help identify items. For instance, use one rubber band for a can of green beans and two for a can of beans.
• Use colored duct tape or electrical tape to help identify items. Other items that could help categorize foods would be foam letters, Velcro, or pipe cleaners.
• Try grouping certain foods together or placing in alphabetical order to organize the pantry.
• Store flour and sugar in different-sized containers.
• Wear short sleeves to avoid longer ones getting caught on fire or in foods.
• Other than using a voice thermometer or kitchen timer to determine when a food is done cooking, you can also carefully touch the item, listen for certain crisp noises, or perhaps smell it to distinguish if is finished.
• Find cookbooks that are available in large print, Braille, or on audio.
Have you successfully used these tips or have a few more suggestions? Start some conversation below by leaving a comment and letting us know!