epic road trip on US Highway 71 to watch the making of the famed round patties and to see how they were made.
Elve Otwell had been working at a candy company in the 1950s. The company made a lot of different confections, including peanut patties. But Otwell didn't care for how they were made, so he came up with a new recipe and started making his own. Thus, the Elve's Peanut Patty Company was born in 1956.
|Elve's Peanut Patties spotted at Monster Mart in Fouke.|
A few years back, Mr. Otwell decided to retire. He first sold the business to Pam Brackman, who in turn sold it to Joe and Shelly Hickey. Today, Mr. Otwell and Pam and Shelly are the only people who know the recipe and the exact ratios involved in making those peanut patties.
If you order your peanut patties online, they're made after you order. They're available in boxes of 20 that way, which is great if you don't live in the area and you'd like your own.
The patties are all delivered to stores by the Hickeys, too, so they know exactly where those peanut patties are going... including places like the
|For Hilton Honors members, Elve's Peanut Patties are one of|
the snacks Gold and Diamond members can choose.
The second thing you need to know is - all peanut patties are not created equal. Almost to the letter, every peanut patty I've seen except those sold by Elve's are pink or red. That's due to food coloring, and it's just not necessary. The patties Elve's makes are a little pinkish, but that's because peanut skins can be a little reddish.
The peanuts used are actually from within a short distance, from Texas and Oklahoma. They could be from Arkansas, when there are enough peanuts being produced to purchase them, but Texarkana is a border town and these peanuts are still local to Elve's.
As Shelly worked on pouring in the candy, her assistant used the back of a spoon to smush the mixture down into the rings. A lot ended up outside the rings, but that's all right. I'll show you why in a minute.
This little operation isn't open to the general public. Some candy places offer tours, but all that's made here are the peanut patties. That's okay, I'm showing you around.
Shelly says Elve's Peanut Patty Company goes through about 1500 pounds of peanuts a month on an average month, but much more during the Four States Fair, when new patties are delivered daily to the fairgrounds.
In the coming months, Elve's Peanut Patties will be arriving on shelves here in Central Arkansas. That means more of us will be able to enjoy these
If you'd like to order your own, check out this website.
Last place visited? Four States Auto Museum
And then, read about El Chico's Arkansas connection
Our overnight accommodations in Texarkana at the Hampton Inn, room 400
Arkansas Welcome Center at Red River
And... downtown Ashdown
also Karen's Krystals in Lockesburg
Cossatot State Park Natural Area
and Queen Wilhelmina State Park Lodge
followed by a tour of Arkansas's oldest movie house, Scott Theater in Waldron.