'state fairs' on Serious Eats

TGI Fry-Day: Deep-Fried Cheese and More at the Tennessee Valley Fair

The man in the window told me that deep-fried cheddar tastes "just like a grilled cheese." He was wrong. It doesn't taste like anything but itself, like soft (but not melted) cheddar cheese, salty and tangy and set off by a crispy layer of fried dough. Deep-fried cheddar cheese is a dangerously good thing that could catch on as more than a fairground novelty. More

Giant Produce at the Alaska State Fair

Even if you've seen giant watermelon and pumpkins and such at other fairs, nothing compares to this. The Alaska State Fair this year had pumpkins as large as 786 pounds (!). One of the cabbages weighed in at 86 pounds. There were giant zucchinis, paddy pans, and root vegetables of all sorts, along with giant flowers the size of basketballs. More

Hot Dog of the Week: Pennsylvania Farm Show Hot Dogs

The Pennsylvania Farm Show ends this weekend. It's an amazing spectacle—a weeklong extravaganza of the best that the state's farmers (and farmers in training) have to offer. Along with cooking demos, square dancing, prize roosters and pineapple upside-down cake contests, there are also two massive food courts with stands cranking out fair food all made with the bountiful harvest of Pennsylvania agriculture, including the hot dogs. Have you ever eaten a hot dog with a cow and pig staring right at you? More

Top 10 New Foods at the Arkansas State Fair

The Arkansas State Fair, which lasts until October 17, is in full swing in Little Rock. Like many other regional fairs, Arkansas boasts a lot of unusual (and usually deep fried) foods in its food court and on the midway. Here are ten new items joining local favorites like deep fried pickles and okra, Hubcap burgers, fried gator on a stick, and pineapple whips. More

Fair Food Roundup at the Orange County Fair in California

Some of the best guilty pleasures can be found at your local county or state fair. In a spectacular show of gustatory bravery, a couple of pals and I tackle the most daunting treats at the Orange County Fair in California. As the chocolate columnist, I stick to chocolate as much as I could—that's just a life choice, really—but these treats span the spectrum of sweet. More

Video: Boy Dances After Eating Deep-Fried Butter

What's inside deep-fried butter balls besides butterfat? Something funky that possesses little boys to break loose and shake it. The Texas State Fair's deep-fried butter (what can't you throw into a deep fryer?) inspires this boy to hunch over and get his boogie on. Are there some sort of deep-fried butter gods controlling his every move? Sure looks like he's under a spell, not to mention the happiest kid ever. The video, after the jump.... More

Photo of the Day: Mermaid Potato at the Humboldt County Fair

[Flickr: Extreme Craft] Because we really don't have enough diorama coverage on Serious Eats, check out this mermaid spud (mer-spud?) in a box from the annual Decorated Potato Contest at the Humboldt County Fair in California. Garth Johnson of the blog Extreme Craft shares photos of the starchy entries on his Flickr page. Since 1896, the whole county has come together with toothpicks and glue—and as crafting technology has advanced in recent years, googly eyes—for the event. The categories are divided by age of the potato dioramist and number of potatoes used. [via Craftzine] Related Alaska State Fair Cabbage Tops Guinness World Record Video: Minnesota State Fair's Food on a Stick Are Potato Peels Really Good for You?... More

Video: Minnesota State Fair's Food on a Stick

If it can be shoved on a stick, the Minnesota State Fair probably has it. In this video from Wallet Pop, Jason Cochran tries to find as many foods-on-sticks as possible, from the basic corn dog to Swedish meatballs to Scotch eggs. Methinks I need to plan to go to next year's fair. Watch the video after the jump.... More

Alaska State Fair Cabbage Tops Guinness World Record

[Photograph: Dean Phipps] There are cabbages and then there are 125.9-pound CABBAGES. Every year the Alaska State Fair holds a giant cabbage weigh-off where people battle for vegetable-growing prowess. This year, reports the Anchorage Daily News, Wasilla resident Steve Hubacek won for his green monster (the leaves span five feet!) beating the previous cabbage world record set in the UK in 1989 for 124 pounds. Related Giant Cabbage Weigh-Off at Alaska State Fair, 2008 Duchess Camilla Gets a Big Cabbage for Her Birthday Copious Cabbage [Talk]... More

What to Eat for Breakfast at the Minnesota State Fair

Hooray for foods on sticks! [Photographs: Lori Writer at Heavy Table] If you need direction on what to each for breakfast at the Minnesota State Fair, running from now until September 7, Heavy Table has you covered with their guide to the fair's breakfast choices. Whether you want something on a stick (chocolate-dipped waffles and bacon slabs, anyone?) or would rather eat sitting down (french toast, scrambled eggs, etc.), they give over 15 recommendations on where to get your morning sweets and savories. I'm glad that cream puffs count as breakfast. (You can also search for specific food items at the Fairborne's Fabulous Fair Food Finder.) Related In Videos: Foods on a Stick at the Minnesota State Fair What's... More

Top 10 Food Finds at the Iowa State Fair

[Flickr: kirkmwilkins] Endless Simmer picks the top 10 food finds at the Iowa State Fair, which took place earlier this month. The finds include foods on sticks, fried food on sticks, butter sculptures, and whatever the mystery cake above is that unsurprisingly won a first place ribbon in the Ugliest Cake competition. Related In Videos: Foods on a Stick at the Minnesota State Fair Deep-Fried Coke at the State Fair of Texas What's Your Favorite Food on a Stick? It's Gotta Be Served at the Minnesota State Fair... More

Deep-Fried Coke at the State Fair of Texas

State Fairs prove that you can deep fry anything your heart desires. Video blogger Sarah McColl of Pink of Perfection visited the State Fair of Texas and reports on its stomach ache-inducing culinary delights, including deep-fried Coke. The dessert consists of deep-fried Coke-flavored batter nuggets topped with Coke syrup and whipped cream. "If you like funnel cakes, you'll like this," says Sarah. Deep-fried coke was created by Abel Gonzales Jr. You can watch a video of him making it on The Today Show. [via Homesick Texan] Related Deep-Fried Jelly Bean Time at the Texas State Fair Visit the Indiana State Fair: Fried Food and Crawling Through a Colon Involved In Videos: Foods on a Stick at the Minnesota State... More

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