Measuring out ingredients

Measuring out ingredients is a real challenge for low vision patients. Liquids in transparent measuring cups are virtually invisible. Patients overfill measuring cups which makes a mess. 

We teach different strategies for wet and dry measuring. For wet measuring, we first mark each quarter cup line with brightly colored bold lines. These lines are much easier to read than the original tiny lines painted onto measuring cups. We then teach patients to fill measuring cups in a pan with sides. That way, any possible spills are contained for an easy cleanup. Pouring is always easier when direct lighting is available. A desk lamp on the kitchen counter can make a big difference by illuminating the task.

Dry measuring can be made easier using a few strategies. Again, start with having a table lamp at the work station. We put tactile markings, called bump dots, on measuring cups to make them easier to identify. These bump dots can be easily seen and felt. Our system has four dots for the quarter cup measure, three dots the third cup measure leading up to one dot on the handle for the full cup measure. The next step is very important. Most people dip the measuring cup into the dry ingredient. We teach our patients to place the measuring cup into a big bowl. The dry ingredient is then spooned from the container into the measuring cup that is in the bowl until it is overfilled. We then have the patient using the dull side of a knife to scrap off the excess into the bowl. When finished, the cup measure is filled accurately and without any mess.

Cooking is really chemistry. If the right proportions are measured and used, delicious cupcakes get made.