Mealtime Mama: Aunt Carrie shares her orange cookies recipe + instant spiced tea


Our thanks to Carrie Chastain of Siloam Springs for the sweet recipes below. Mrs. Chastain, an outgoing grandmother of eight, says the cookie recipe goes back so far in the family’s history that she has no idea where it really came from.

The orange cookies were originally baked on a wood stove and the ingredients list had to be adapted to modern measurements.

Aunt Carrie’s Orange Cookies:

sugar2 cups sugar

1 cup butter (salted is preferred)

2 eggs

1 cup sour milk or 1 cup milk and 2 teaspoons vinegar

1 orange, juice and grated rind (I put about a half teaspoon orange flavoring in also)

1 teaspoon soda

4 and ½ cups sifted flour

Cream sugar and butter, add juice and rind of orange, then eggs, add milk and flour. Stir soda in last ¼ cup milk. Add to mixture.

Drop by teaspoons on buttered pans. Bake at 350 degrees until brown. (This is a very old recipe, but I found it takes about 12 minutes.)


1 box powdered sugar

1 orange, juice and grated rind

2 T butter

A little milk

Melt butter and add small amount of sugar, cream well, add orange juice and ring and remaining sugar.

Makes about 128 “good-sized” cookies. Can make half recipe for fewer cookies.

Instant Spiced Tea:

1 cup instant tea

1 ½ cups Tang or similar orange drink mix

cinnamon1 package lemon Kool-aid

½ T ginger

2 T cinnamon

1 cup sugar

Mix all ingredients well and store in covered container. Add 2 rounded teaspoons of mixture to a cup of hot water.

If you’re too busy to cook this week, visit Ozark Natural Food’s cafe for some healthy, delicious food to eat there — or to go. They have a hot bar, sandwiches, soups, pizza… Even a breakfast bar! Click here to visit A la Carte.

Note from the mamas: These recipes originally published in 2009.


Mealtime Mama: ‘Sunshine on a Cloudy Day’ Cake


I recently discovered a cake over the Thanksgiving holiday and my whole family loved it.

If you want a pretty, delicious cake to bring to a Christmas party, this is a good one.

Sunshine on a Cloudy Day Cake

1 Yellow cake mix

eggs brown3 eggs

1 can mandarin oranges (don’t drain)

1 large can crushed pineapple (don’t drain)

1 box instant vanilla pudding

1 container of whipped topping

Directions: Blend these ingredients together well: the yellow cake mix, three eggs and mandarin oranges, including the juice. I put my batter into two round pans to make a layer cake. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes (or until it springs when you press it). Let the cakes cool thoroughly. Thoroughly, mamas! If you don’t, you’ll end up with melty icing. Speaking of icing, you make it by hand mixing together the box of instant pudding (just the powder), the can of crushed pineapple with juice and a container of whipped topping.

This is an awesome treat, I assure you.

Happy baking!

ONF store

Mealtime Mama: Cranberry Relish


We love finding new ideas for dinner (and great, natural products) on the Ozark Natural Foods website.

Below is a recipe for cranberry relish that would be beautiful on a holiday table.

Cranberry Relish

onf recipes2 cups fresh cranberries
2 granny smith apples, cored
1 large orange, peeled
1-1&1/2 cups turbinado sugar

Directions: Mix all the ingredients together in a bowl, then blend together in a food processor. Use the lighter settings so it doesn’t look like mush but more of a coarse blend, chill and serve. Add more or less sugar depending on your taste preferences (I prefer tart flavors over sweet so I use less sugar). You can also substitute the sugar with dates or try adding other fruits like mangoes, pomegranate seeds, or even pineapple.

Recipe from Pauline Thiessen, Produce Manager

If you’d like to see more ONF healthy cooking recipes, click here. If you’re thinking about holiday gifts, they have gift cards available for purchase on the website. Click here to buy a gift card for the person who’s really hard to buy for, but loves all things fresh, natural and organic! They can also use the gift cards for lattes and lunch in the cafe :)


Mealtime Mama: Junior League of Northwest Arkansas’ Pumpkin Pie Cake


At the Northwest Arkansas Boutique Show over the weekend, some of the fabulous ladies from the Junior League of NWA were there serving Pumpkin Pie Cake.

cookbookWe kept seeing shoppers with little samples of the dessert and wondered where they were coming from. Even the kids were gobbling it up. When Gwen and I took turns leaving our booth to go shop, I stopped by the Junior League booth and spotted the samples.

That’s when they told me it was the Pumpkin Pie Cake recipe from page 162 in their Add Another Place Setting cookbook.

The recipe is delicious — and this is coming from someone who’s not normally a fan of  pumpkin desserts. I plan to make this one, though, because it tastes just like Fall.

The recipe is below. If you’d like to get your hands on one of the cookbooks, click here to go over and read more about it and to buy.

You can also buy it on Amazon here. The cookbook includes recipes that are Southern, with regional and international influences from the many new members added to the NWA community every year. It’s a “cook’s tour” of the area with recipes from a few local celebrities.

HEADS-UP: Stay tuned for a sweet giveaway coming up in the next few weeks, related to the Junior League!

Pumpkin Pie Cake

1 (29-ounce) can pumpkin

4 eggs

13 ounces evaporated milk

1 1/2 cups sugar

1 tablespoon cinnamon

1 teaspoon ginger

1/2 teaspoon nutmeg

1 (2-layer) package yellow cake mix

1 cup (2 sticks) butter, melted

1 cup chopped pecans

Whipped cream for garnish

Directions: Beat the pumpkin, eggs, evaporated milk, sugar, cinnamon, ginger and nutmeg in a mixing bowl. Pour into a greased 9X13-inch cake pan. Sprinkle the dry cake mix evenly over the top. Pour the butter evenly over the cake mix and sprinkle with the pecans. Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour. Remove to a wire rack to cool completely. Cut into squares and garnish with whipped cream.

Note from the mamas: When you’re planning your Thanksgiving meal, remember that Ozark Natural Foods has free range turkeys available. The turkeys, raised on a vegetarian diet with no hormones, antibiotics or preservatives, are supplied to the Co-op by Mary’s Free Range Organic Turkeys. Click here to read more about it on the ONF blog.


Mealtime Mama: Butterscotch Pumpkin Muffins


We posted the recipe for these muffins about three years ago and it seemed like a great time to share them again with Halloween so close.

A yummy dessert to share with friends at a party — or to make for your little ghosts and goblins.

The dessert is from Ceri Wilkin over a the blog Recipe Doodle. Click here to go visit Ceri’s blog! She recently revamped the site and it looks fabulous. She has lots of awesome recipes and she entertains a LOT so she’s a great food blogger to follow for tips and tricks.


butterscotch muffinsCeri says, “I love the combination of pumpkin and butterscotch in these two recipes – and so do my children!! The recipe comes from a wonderful lady, Susan, who ran a meal delivery business. Dinner to my door once a week was an absolute life saver when I had small children!

I recently took the muffins to a play date, and they received many compliments. I didn’t have time to cook the whole batch before leaving the house, so wrapped the remaining dough, popped it in the refrigerator, and cooked them up the next day – they turned out beautifully.”

1 3/4 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 cup pumpkin puree
2 eggs
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
3/4 cup butterscotch chips

Heat oven to 350F.
Coat muffin cups with nonstick spray or line with paper liners.
Sift together flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, ginger and nutmeg.
In a large mixing bowl, whisk together pumpkin, eggs, oil, granulated sugar, brown sugar and vanilla until well blended.
Gradually stir in flour mixture, then fold butterscotch chips into the batter.
Divide the batter evenly among prepared muffin cups, filling cups 2/3 full.
Bake 18 to 20 minutes, or until muffin tops spring back when touched lightly with a finger.
Cool in pan 5 minutes. Remove to wire rack and cool completely.


ceri croppedMore about Ceri: I am a wife, mother and recipe follower. For years I have tackled one new recipe a day – some are fabulous, some are not. In a past life I was an Occupational Therapist, Rugby and Netball player, Belly Dancer, lesson taker of golf, tennis and wine appreciation. My Husband owns Pizzerias, my Father was a butcher, my Mother a caterer, my older Brother makes the absolute best birthday cakes and desserts you will ever taste, my younger Brother owns restaurants in New Zealand and my kids love to eat. Click here to visit Ceri’s blog, Recipe Doodle.

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