Mealtime Mama: Raspberry Streusel Squares


My husband’s Aunt Irene is a great cook.

I haven’t seen her since we visited the shore six years ago, but I still have a little file of recipes she sent me after our trip. I noticed this one tucked away today and thought I’d share:

Raspberry Streusel Squares

1 1/2 cups flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup sugar

1/2 cup light brown sugar

3/4 cups butter (softened)

1 1/2 cups quick cooking rolled oats

1 jar (10 oz. or 3/4 cup) red seedless raspberry preserves

1/4 cup chopped almond slivers

Powdered sugar

Directions: Sift into bowl — combine flour, baking powder and salt in mixing bowl; stir in sugars. Cut in butter until mixture is crumbly; stir in oats.

Press about two-thirds of mixture onto bottom of lightly greased 9×9 inch baking pan. Spread on whipped preserves (after having taken the jam from the jar and put it into a bowl and whipped it).

Add almonds to remaining crumb mixture and sprinkle over preserves, patting down lightly.

Temperature: Bake at 375 degrees for 30-40 minutes or until golden brown. Cool, then cut in squares and sprinkle with powdered sugar.


Mealtime Mama: Oatmeal cookies made by mom


When my siblings and I go “home” to my parents’ house, we inevitably finish dinner and say we’re craving something sweet.

We often ask our mother to make oatmeal cookies, maybe because she always has the ingredients on hand. Or maybe because, when I bite into one, I seriously feel about 8 years old again. Especially when I eat them warm right out of the oven.

I’ve really been craving those cookies lately, so I’m pretty sure I know what I’m going to ask for the next time I visit.

Shannon’s Mom’s Oatmeal Cookies

quick oats1 stick butter

1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar

1/4 cup granulated sugar

1 egg

1/2 teaspoon vanilla

3/4 cup all purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon soda

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 1/2 cups oatmeal

Directions: Beat together butter and sugars. Add egg and vanilla. Beat well. Add flour, soda and salt. Mix well. Add oatmeal and mix. Drop by rounded spoonfuls on ungreased cookie sheet. Serve warm and start a new family tradition!

ozark-natural-foodsOzark Natural Foods is a locally owned consumer cooperative dedicated to participatory democracy. Its mission is to provide owners and the Northwest Arkansas community with natural and organic products that encourage healthful living and a sustainable planet. Click here to become an owner, which has all kinds of special benefits!

*This post originally published on nwaMotherlode in May 2013.

Mealtime Mama: Italian Style Roasted Peppers


If  you love bell peppers (we do!), below is a unique recipe from the Ozark Natural Foods website to try this summer.

If you’d like to see other recipes on the ONF site, click here.

Italian Style Roasted Peppers

onf bell peppers4 large green bell peppers

1 large red pepper

2 large cloves garlic

3 Tbsp olive oil

Black pepper to taste

Directions: Wash and dry peppers. Place on greased baking sheet under broiler. Broil and turn peppers until skin gets black on all sides. Or, use tongs and hold over gas flame. Wrap in kitchen towel and allow to cool to touch (or place in paper bag and close) at least 10 minutes. Peel off charred skin, remove stem and seed. Cut into thin strips. Mix pepper strips with garlic, olive oil and black pepper. Cover and refrigerate 3 hours or overnight.

ONF storeOzark Natural Foods is Northwest Arkansas’ natural-foods Co-op, owned by a community of more than 10,000 investors, most of whom live in Northwest Arkansas. ONF has been an essential part of the community for more than 40 years, growing with Fayetteville and the surrounding area.

Mealtime Mama: Cool summer recipes

mealtimemama-ONF It may be hot outside, but it’s precisely the time to bring the heat to my mouth. Whether you use fresh tomatoes or canned, this homemade salsa is a fresh treat.

In the summer, my mom always has it waiting for me when I arrive “home” for a visit. I even had it for breakfast one day! I love it that much. Below the salsa recipe is another family favorite that involves fresh broccoli. No turning on the oven for this one and it’s super good, especially to share at a potluck. Don’t let the broccoli fool you; the recipe also has BACON in it.

Banquet Salsa:

tomatoes-on-vine.PNGHalf a large green bell pepper (or one small)

1/2 jalapeno

Small onion, diced

1 (14.5 ounce) can of diced tomatoes

Diced garlic (two cloves)

Cilantro to taste (finely chopped)

1 teaspoon sugar

1/2 teaspoon lemon juice

Salt & pepper to taste

Place bell pepper and jalapeno into the oven and broil them until the skin browns. Then peel the skin off and dice finely. Mix the other ingredients together and chill. Enjoy!

Broccoli Salad:

broc.jpg2 bunches broccoli, separated into florets

8 bacon strips, fried and crumbled

1/2 cup chopped onion (red adds color)

2 tablespoons sunflower seeds

2 tablespoons raisins (or to taste)

2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar

1/2 cup sugar

1 cup mayonnaise

In a large salad bowl, combine broccoli, bacon and onion. Set aside. In another bowl, combine mayo, sugar and vinegar until smooth. Just before serving, pour dressing over salad and toss.

ONF storeNote from the mamas: The Summer Remix symbol appears on posts previously published on nwaMotherlode that were noted as a “reader favorite”. If you missed the original publication date, we hope you’ll enjoy this encore performance. Happy summer!


Mealtime Mama: Dark Chocolate Avocado Truffles

mealtimemama-ONFKaylin Gilkey blogs about healthy living — which includes healthy eating — at Enticing Healthy Eating and is working toward a holistic health coaching certificate.

She loves to take recipes and healthy them up. Thus, these dark chocolate AVOCADO truffles.

kaylin's trufflesWant to try them out? Here’s the recipe and directions:

Dark Chocolate Avocado Truffles

Makes 16-20 truffles


1 1/2 small, ripe avocados
5 oz. dark chocolate
1 heaping Tbsp. Splenda brown sugar blend (or 2 Tbsp. brown sugar)
1/4 tsp. vanilla extract
1/8 tsp. salt
3 Tbsp. unsweetened cocoa powder (separated)


Slice avocado in half, pit the avocado, then get all of the flesh out into a medium sized bowl. Using a fork, mash the avocado until lump-free.

For the dark chocolate, try to find baking bars or dark chocolate bars rather than dark chocolate chips if you can. I used Ghirardelli Dark Chocolate bars.  Melt the chocolate in microwave safe bowl.  Add the melted chocolate, brown sugar, vanilla, salt, and about 1 1/2 Tbsp. of the cocoa powder to bowl of mashed avocado.  Stir well to combine.

Place the mixture in the bowl into the fridge and let set for at 40 minutes. Use a small ice cream scoop or a small tablespoon to scoop about tablespoon-sized truffle balls. Roll the truffles around in your hands, then roll them in the remaining 1 1/2 Tbsp. cocoa powder. Place all truffles back in the fridge to fully set for a bit longer. Yes, I know it’s hard to wait, but it’ll be worth it! Then pop one in your mouth. Smile and enjoy your healthy treat.

Kaylin GilkeyKaylin Gilkey blogs at Enticing Healthy Eating and is very passionate about food, nutrition and health. She can’t wait to help others reach their health goals. She works at Back in Emotion Chiropractic and Wellness Clinic in Bentonville. She’ll start soon teaching nutrition workshops and classes at at the Artist Retreat Center in Bella Vista and at Back in Emotion. CLICK HERE to visit her business Facebook page, which is Kaylin’s Keys to Health.

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