Overcoming Obstacles in Cooking Reviewed By Conny Withay of
Conny Withay

Reviewer Conny Withay:Operating her own business in office management since 1991, Conny is an avid reader and volunteers with the elderly playing her designed The Write Word Game. A cum laude graduate with a degree in art living in the Pacific Northwest, she is married with two sons, two daughters-in-law, and three grandchildren.

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By Conny Withay
Published on April 1, 2014

Author: Matthew W. Miller
Publisher: Balboa Press
ISBN: 978-1-4525-7067-9

Author: Matthew W. Miller
Publisher: Balboa Press
ISBN: 978-1-4525-7067-9

People with cerebral palsy may need more time to learn how to cook than those without this condition. It may take them ten minutes or ten years to learn something, so be patient with them,” Matthew W. Miller writes in his book, Overcoming Obstacles in Cooking.

At ninety pages, this paperback targets readers who want to learn how to cook or teach those with disabilities the craft of cooking. With the author having mild cerebral palsy, its fifty recipes are easy to understand and make, sometimes perhaps without any assistance.

The first six chapters are divided into recipes of main dishes, breads, vegetables, soups and salads, and desserts. Color-coded by chapter, there is the name of the recipe at the top of the page, a highlighted-rectangle area that contains the ingredients needed, and instructions along with the person who submitted the recipe.

Although there are no photographs of the finished products, some of the examples include Kelli’s Favorite Oatmeal Waffles, Manicotti Miner’s Delight, Dough Knots, Yellow Squash Fritters, Cheryle’s Steak Salad, Venison Vegetable Soup, Fruit Pizza Cookies, Mother’s Frozen Lemon Pie, and Autumn’s Favorite Enchiladas. 

After sixty pages dedicated to recipes, there are three pages of colored photographs depicting many of the unnamed chefs who have overcome obstacles and their helpers.

Some of the ten appendixes should be at the start of the book instead of the end as they are informative and interesting. There are important tips to learn how to cook by using crafts and hands-on cooking activities, how to use food in the classroom setting by subject, putting school supply lists together that work in the kitchen, tips overcoming obstacles, and a teaching people with disabilities how to cook questionnaire. Even a cooking shopping list is included with foods, DVDs, appliance/household items, and recommended stores. 

Overcoming any disability in life is challenging and a struggle. The joy and happiness outweighs the frustration and confusion when Steak in a Sac, Broccoli Bread, Scalloped Tomatoes, and a Layered Salad is served for dinner, leaving room for Ladyfinger Surprise.

Miller should be commended for considering the needs of those who suffer from a disability. If there were product photographs, an alphabetical index, and more organization of important facts in the beginning, this would be a five-star cookbook for anyone who likes to make quick, delicious meals. 

Thanks to the author for furnishing this complimentary book in exchange for a review based on the reader’s opinions.

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