Food author and blogger Kat Robinson just came out with a book called Arkansas Cookery. She went through church and community cookbooks to find old southern recipes.

You can get signed copies of her book on the Tonti Press website.

Robinson is also offering three in-person Cook The Book workshops this coming February at The Writers’ Colony at Dairy Hollow in Eureka Springs, where Arkansas Cookery was cooked, photographed and compiled. 

Below are the links and dates to register.

February 13th link

February 19th link

February 20th link


A personal favorite of mine, this rich but light cake is a lovely informal choice for your sideboard. While the tradition is to ice the cake in the pan, I have discovered the joys of the combination of hot icing and cold milk. That subtle Coke flavor is enticing, particularly amongst those who have never encountered this delicacy.

2 cups unsifted flour
2 cups sugar
2 sticks oleo or butter
3 Tablespoons cocoa
1 cup Coca-Cola
2 eggs
1/2 cup buttermilk
   OR 1/2 cup milk plus 1.5 teaspoons lemon juice
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 1/2 cups mini marshmallows

Heat oven to 350°F. If planning to ice cake, spread pecans from recipe below on sheet pan and slide into oven, removing when oven has reached desired temperature.

Combine flour and sugar. Heat butter, cocoa and Coke to boiling and pour over flour and sugar mixture. Beat eggs; add buttermilk or substitute, lemon juice, baking soda and vanilla and mix well. Add marshmallows. Combine with other ingredients.

Grease a large flat pan. Turn out batter and even out to one inch in depth. Bake at 350°F for 30-35 or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Have icing prepared for pour-over, if using.

1/2 cup oleo or butter
3 Tablespoons cocoa
6 Tablespoons Coca-Cola
1 box (16 ounces) confectioner’s
1 cup chopped pecans

Combine butter, cocoa and Coca-Cola and bring to a boil. Pour over confectioner’s sugar. Beat well. Stir in toasted pecans. 

Option 1 (traditional): While cake is still in pan, pour icing over and smooth. When cake is cool, slice as desired.
Option 2 (21st century): Allow cake to cool after baking. Slice cake as desired. Assemble and heat icing and pour over individual slices.

Recipe from Arkansas Cookery: Retro Recipes from The Natural State by Kat Robinson