Monday, November 30, 2009

Minnesota State Fair Food

Today, for the conclusion of the November blogging challenge, I thought I'd finally finish my wrap up of the Minnesota State Fair with the food portion of the day. Thanks to everyone who has commented this month! It's been fun and I'm going to try to keep it up (but not QUITE so frantic a pace).
The gang at the beginning of the day

I went to the State Fair with five friends on a Saturday in August. We spent nearly 12 hours at the fair and photographed almost every morsel of food that entered our mouths. This is the documentation of that process. Ratings will follow each picture. Thanks to all involved for appearing in pictures, even when you look goofy, and to Tricia for letting me use all her pictures.

Abby with Sparkling Apple Cider Float
Sparkling apple cider with cinnamon ice cream in it.

Apple Cider Float: D (not worth it)

Posing with my Cream Puff
Standard cream puff. I ended up with powdered sugar all over my jacket and whipped cream all over my face.
Cream Puff: B+ (Worth it, but not spectacular)

Big Fat Bacon (on a stick)
Slices of bacon (1/3 of a pound) on a stick. Simple concept. Pretty fatty.

Big Bacon on a Stick: ? (Untasted by me)

Deep Fried Reese's Peanut Butter Cups
Reese's battered and then deep fried. On toothpicks so they are kindof on sticks.

Deep Fried Reese's: A (Ben) C (Katie)

Chocolate Belgian Waffle on a Stick
Sadly, not served on a stick due to the strawberries and whipped cream.

Chocolate Belgian Waffle: ? (Untasted by me)

Fries and Soda
Fries and Soda. There's not much to be said about that.
Fries: A (Mmm, perfect)
Soda: ?

Green Pepper Rings and Cotton Candy
Green Pepper Rings are like onion rings but made with green pepper instead of onion.

Green Pepper Rings: B+

Cotton Candy is self explanatory.

Cotton Candy: ?

Fry Dog and Caramel Roll
Fry Dogs are a treat originally from South Korea, I think. The concept is a hot dog on a stick coated with french fries in a batter.

Fry Dog: C- (Concept sounded better in theory)

Caramel Rolls are self explanatory.

Caramel Roll: B

Hot Dish on a Stick
Hot Dish on a stick is a Minnesotan treat. (Hot dish being a Minnesotan term for casserole.) Hot Dish on a stick is tater tots and meatballs alternated on the stick, dipped in batter, and deep fried. They are served with two dipping sauces...cream of mushroom soup and ketchup.

Hot Dish on a Stick: A-

Lemonade is the classic summer drink at the fair.
Lemonade: B+ (I can't give it an A if it wasn't fresh pressed...)

Deep Fried Cream Cheese on a Stick
A big chunk of cream cheese, put on a stick, battered and deep fried and served with pepper jelly. Bizarre but not unlike cream cheese wontons. Far better than the Cheese on a Stick that was velveeta, I'm sure.
Deep Fried Cream Cheese on a Stick: B+ (for creativity)

Peach Glazed Pig Cheeks
Peach glazed pig cheeks were weird, but slightly peachy and served on toothpicks (thus they could be classified as on a stick). Famous Dave's always has something new and this was it. Still, halibut cheeks are yummier...

Peach glazed pig cheeks: B (too much gristle and fat)

Frozen chocolate banana
Who doesn't love chocolate dipped frozen bananas?

Frozen chocolate banana: B+

Tornado Potato

After the fry dog disappointed, I was worried about this other South Korean treat, but the Tornado Potato brought everything the Fry Dog lacked. This mean monster is like a GIANT potato chip made from one potato. They have cool tools to make them and the stick to the stick so that people can share. There were also different seasonings to sprinkle. I would have/could have eaten about 10 of these. Scary.

Tornado Potato: A+

Honey Ice Cream with Sunflower Seeds
Honey ice cream got Abby SUPER excited. I don't like honey, so I was less excited.
Honey Ice Cream with sunflower seeds: ?

Lingonberry Ice Cream
The Scandinavians sure knew what they were doing. I think this cone cost me $5, but it was worth it. AMAZING ice cream. Ok, not as good as Italian gelato, but hey, it didn't have chocolate in it. (And so good, Scott and Tricia got some minutes later.)
Lingonberry ice cream: A

At this point we did not eat for about an hour or two. We had too much oil in our bellies. But then we recovered and the eating resumed...

Deep Fried Cheese Curds

Take cheese curds, dip in batter, deep fry. Sadly, then they lose their squeak :( They may or may not be consumed with ketchup.

Deep Fried Cheese Curds: B+

Texas Steak Dinner on a Stick
These were basically steak and veggie kabobs with a dinner roll thrown on the end. Quite bizarre. I was debating whether or not I was hungry, so I didn't get one.
Texas Steak Dinner on a Stick: ?

I finally decided I was really really hungry and got a fajita. I forgot to take a picture of it until Tricia chastised me and caught me mid bite.
Fajita: B (really small, but met my needs)
Deep Fried Norwegian Banana Splits and Uffda Treat
A Deep Fried Norwegian Banana Split is a banana wrapped in lefse and deep fried. Then it's topped with ice cream and mixed berries (lingon berries included) and whipped cream. Then you eat it and it is delicious.
Deep Fried Norwegian Banana Split: A- (it wasn't on a stick, so it doesn't get an A)
Uffda Treat is a scoop of cheesecake filling in a krumkake shell, topped with a pecan praline sauce.
Uffda Treat: C (primarily for not being as awesome as the banana split)

Sweet Martha Cookies and Milk
You must end your state fair experience with Sweet Martha Cookies (chocolate chip is the only choice) and Milk. Get a Bucket of Cookies and run to the all-you-can-drink-milk-for-a-dollar booth. Sit on the grass and eat and drink. Only not more than about two glasses of milk cause you might get sick.
Sweet Martha Cookies: A
Milk: A+

If you are interested in coming to the 2010 Great Minnesota Get Together, you should let me know ASAP, so I can book a space on my floor for you. I already have at least two people coming, so it should be a great time. Every year they add new foods and so your culinary horizons of deep fried food and deep fried food on sticks can continually be expanded. Until then, you may want to eat salad.


tatgeer said...

I found this year's french fries to be far inferior to previous years. Less skin? Now I can't remember, just that they went from being super good fries to fairly standard but overpriced fries. :(

And, you ate an amazing amount of food. Just reading this made my tummy hurt!

Simon said...

Wow. That is a lot of deep-fried food on sticks. I think the only thing I would under no circumstances try is "Peach Glazed Pig Cheeks." I can't get past how gross the name sounds. Plus, pig cheeks? Really? We have to eat its FACE? Come on now. That's just mean.

I must say I am very impressed that you posted EVERY DAY, and it made me very happy and I hope you will be posting much much more in the future. (HINT.) However, as I was reading this it occurred to me that it's been a long time since I had 48 e-mails from you in my inbox. Like maybe about a month. HMM. But really, I have enjoyed reading posts from you every day, it always makes me happy :-)

Anne said...

Katie, this post was so disgusting I considered boycotting Minnesota. However, the prior post about crafting with your mother was so gosh-darn homey that it will make up for it. Your father needs me to help drive to Minneapolis at Christmas.
Anyway, it was wonderful to have you and Ben visit. Come again!

Katie said...

Erin - I don't know that I've eaten fries in the past, cause I usually have to save room for all the random stuff. But they were much better than many of the other things we ate (as evidenced by me eating them and eating them and eating them and eating them and then them being all gone...). Sorry for making your tummy hurt. I did have to wait three months to write the post about all the food. But I remember thinking that I didn't gain nearly as much weight, according to my Wii, as I expected.

Simon - YES IT IS! Ok. I was maybe against pig cheeks too. But then I met halibut cheeks. They are awesome. And then I met guanciale. Which is like bacon, but almost better. But it is pig cheeks. Which proves that pig cheeks rock. SO, while it sounds weird, it's not that weird. Although they weren't that good. And really, what else are you going to do with the cheek? Throw it out.

I did post every day, and did much less of all other things on the emailing you. But to be fair, the internet was more boring this month. So you have to think about if emails or blogs are more interesting. Emails are certainly easier for me to write :) I am glad that the posts made you happy though...see the latest for my new challenge. Or facebook for the alternate challenges that Reid and Ben have come up with.

Mom - I am sorry you feel that way. I guess you should never come to MN during August or September, although perhaps I am portraying the fair in a light that is negative to you. There is also lots of healthy local food. It is much harder to find though. I will definitely come visit you again, but Ben may have been scared off by your blow torch-wielding craziness...I will have to check with him. I am glad that you are not boycotting Minneapolis and are still planning to visit.