That doesn’t change the power of the name of the oldest bakery in northeast Arkansas — nor does it invalidate the family’s connection to pastry-making. Confused? Let me enlighten you.
Eventually, the little garage kitchen got to be too small for the operation, so in 1965 Mr. Batten moved out and east half a mile on Kingshighway to a spot that sat kitty-corner to Dog N’ Suds (which is still in operation today). While still small, a couple of people could come in and sit and have breakfast in the little eatery. Mr. Batten also made doughnuts for local grocery stores to sell, and his golden rings became the standard for the area.
Arkansas Pie: A Delicious Slice of The Natural State, Batten’s Bakery offers one of the singular traditional pies available anywhere – a chocolate old fashioned handpie that’s filled with cocoa, butter and sugar – not custard and certainly not pudding. The flavor of this pie, its flaky consistency and its density all remind me of the good things about growing up in Arkansas. It’s certainly a pie a grandmother would have conjured.
Batten's offers several different varieties of fried pies, and in the morning you can get one warmed up
And of course, there are more large pastry items to celebrate, in particular the fried cinnamon rolls and the apple fritters - which are large enough to fit a half-dozen box by theimselves.
UPDATE: Thanks to great comments by Paragould natives, the locations for early Batten's Bakery sites have been updated.
UPDATE #2: Wow... for some reason, between May 17th and 19th, 2017, this particular page has received 10,000 pageviews. Amazing.
Classic Eateries of the Arkansas Delta, by this author.