Arkansas - The Natural State
Updated: Apr 6
Official Motto: The People Rule
Suggested Motto: The Rednecks Rule
Two Truths and a Lie
Arkansas is home to the nation’s first federally protected natural resource, Hot Springs National Park, and the first National River. A 1972 Act protects the Buffalo River as it flows undammed for 135 scenic miles surrounded by pine forests and the Ozark mountains.
In September of 1958, Governor Orval Faubus, closed all the high schools within Little Rock, the state’s capital and largest city, to prevent the spread of poliovirus. They remained closed for the entire academic year.
The Arkansas School for the Deaf adopted a Leopard mascot in the 1940s. In 2016, the British rock band, Def Leppard, played a concert in Little Rock. The band took time to meet students from the school and posed for a picture to show support for the Deaf Leopards.
The Recipe - Pecan Sables
Arkansas is a beautiful state with a plethora of hot springs, forests, and diamonds. The state also has a plethora of official symbols including a state dinosaur, Arkansaurus fridayi, and a state cooking vessel, the Dutch Oven. This recipe honors the state grain, rice, and the state nut, pecans. Arkansas grows more rice than any other state in the nation; the plant adorns the official state quarter.
First, I roasted pecans until they were nearly burnt and filled the kitchen with a lovely nutty aroma. When they cooled I crushed the nuts and mixed them into a shortbread dough. I used half rice flour and half all-purpose wheat flour to complete the dough. Rice flour is gluten-free which helps shortbread achieve an extra crumbly texture. I call these cookies sables which is the French word for sand. They could also be called Pecan Sandies or pecan shortbread. Whatever you call them, they are still delicious.
I pressed the mixture into a tin and baked it whole. After removing from the oven, I sprinkled superfine sugar along the top to create a sparkly, sweet crunch atop the cookies. I tried very hard to cut them into neat diamond shapes, but shortbread likes to crumble and make a mess. It is best to let it be rustic and delicious, I shouldn’t have tried to dress it up.
These cookies were addictive. I accidentally ate five in a row while photographing them. To save me from gluttony, I took the batch to work and they disappeared by lunchtime.
Want to experience Arkansas for yourself? Then Teresa recommends ...
My baby’s first road trip was to Eureka Springs, Arkansas. We enjoyed hiking in the woods, exploring quaint shops, and dining out with only minimal crying. We explored the historic Basin Park Hotel and danced in the “Barefoot Ballroom” I would love to return and explore the majestic Ozark country again. In the meantime, I just might reread Maya Angelou’s autobiography, “I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings.”
Time for the whole truth
Governor Faubus was angry that federal troops guarded and allowed nine black students to attend Little Rock Central High during the 1957-1958 school year. To prevent further integration he closed all the public high schools for the 1958-1959 school year.
(By the way, you can click on any of the 2 truths and a lie statements to visit the source of the trivia)