We rarely get political here on Eat Arkansas, preferring to leave that sort of thing to our betters over at the Arkansas Blog. After all, this is a food blog, and we’re inclined to break bread with pretty much anyone, no matter of political leanings — especially if they offer to pick up the check.

But it’s political season here in the Natural State, and with current Governor Mike Beebe term-limited out of office, we’re going to have a new governor in 2015. And while the campaign ads have been interrupting Wheel of Fortune at my house for what seems like a geologic age, neither candidate has given me the information that I think we need in order to make an informed decision for governor: their favorite recipe. So, I went and asked Mike Ross and Asa Hutchinson just what they liked to eat, and both candidates were kind enough to play along — and no matter your feelings about each man’s stances on the issues, you have to give them both credit for one thing: They love dessert.


First up, former Congressman Mike Ross, from the Democratic Party. Ross spent 12 years in the United States Congress from the Fourth district. He sends us a recipe for banana pudding from his mother, Frances Ross, which he says “has been one of my favorites since I was a kid — and continues to be one today.” I’m pretty fond of banana pudding myself, Congressman, so I’m right there with you.

Frances Ross’ Banana Pudding


*3 cups milk
*1-1/2 cups sugar
*4 tablespoons of flour
*3 eggs (yolks only)
*1/2 teaspoon salt
*4 tablespoons butter
*1 teaspoon vanilla flavoring

Put 2 cups milk in a 2 quart saucepan and heat very slowly.


While milk is heating, beat together 1 1/2 cups sugar, 4 tablespoons flour, 3 egg yolks. Add the 1 remaining cup of milk and mix well.

Add the above mixture to the 2 cups of heated milk and stir constantly until thickened and can tell is beginning to boil.

Add the 4 tablespoons of butter and 1 teaspoon vanilla flavoring.

Place vanilla wafers in bottom of 2 qt. dish, add part of the mixture. Slice two bananas next, add remaining mixture.


Serve with whipped topping, or beat egg whites and place on top and cook in oven for 15 minutes at 350 degrees.

Our second recipe is from former Congressman and DHS Undersecretary Asa Hutchinson from the Republican Party. Hutchinson’s wife Susan was kind enough to send along one of his favorite recipes, a classic apple pie that he  “likes it best warm with vanilla ice cream. But he also likes a cold slice re-heated in a little butter in a skillet for a tasty treat or addition to breakfast.” That skillet preparation sounds like a winner to me.

Apple pie recipe from the 1970 printing of the Betty Crocker Cookbook

Makes one 9 inch pie
Use your favorite pie crust. I always make my own with the recipe from the same Betty Crocker Cookbook.

*3/4 Cup sugar
*1/4 Cup Gold Medal flour, non-rising
*1/2 teaspoon nutmeg (optional)
*1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
*Dash of salt
*6 Cups of thinly sliced pared tart apples
(Asa prefers a sweeter apple e.g. Delicious)
*2 Tablespoons butter or margarine (optional)

Heat oven to 425 degrees. Prepare the pastry of your choice. Stir together sugar, flour, nutmeg, cinnamon and salt; mix with apples.

Turn into pastry-lined pie pan; dot with butter.

Cover with top crust which has slits cut in it; seal and flute.

Cover edge with 2 to 3 inch strip of aluminum foil to prevent excessive browning; remove foil last 15 minutes of baking.


Bake 40 to 50 minutes or until crust is brown and juice begins to bubble through slits in crust.

So how did they do? Which recipe sounds better to you all? Honestly, my preference would probably be a bit of both, preferably after a big potluck dinner. I’d like to thank each candidate for participating in this political recipe spotlight — and remember everybody, no matter who you like, be sure and vote!