As long as we’re talking about food…

Philadelphia does not have a monopoly on American cuisine. It is Minnesota State Fair season! We’re all gonna DIEEEEE.

It opens 27 August. That’s about when classes start, so I have an excuse to avoid this opportunity to destroy my digestive system, my veins and arteries, my liver, my urinary system, and my olfactory/taste centers.


  1. brett says

    They had that at the Pioneer Day celebration I went to a few days ago here in Salt Lake City. Lots of carnival-style food: fried everything, etc. I tried a funnel cake the size of a dinner plate, and ate about a third of it successfully.

  2. yazikus says

    I do not own a deep fryer. This is on purpose. I fear if I did have one, I’d be trying to deep fry everything, just to see if I could. There was a King of the Hill episode that culminated with the attempt to deep fry a can of beer- I would hate to see myself reach that point!

    That said, the last few county fairs have had some really, really shitty food. There are a ton of local food trucks in my town, and instead of sourcing those they bring in out of town fair-food people. It is just gross.

  3. slithey tove (twas brillig (stevem)) says

    Once I went to the Massachusettz “Big E” festival at Springfield, and was gobsmacked that one could find booths selling deep fried *. (where * is used in the sense of “anything”) Including “deep fried ice cream”. I smacked my head with “WHA!?!?!?”
    I since heard (somewhere), that deep fry actually produces a LESS greasy food than pan frying. Pan frying lets the food soak up the grease during the cooking, while deep-frying sears the surface so quickly, nothing can penetrate except the heat, to perform the cooking. The only rival is hot air frying, where zero grease is used, nor hot surfaces.
    The searing of deep fry only applies to the meat substance, the batter surrounding the meat, however, is there to absorb all that greasy liquids (to provide flavor, they say).

  4. pwillow1 says

    Never been to the MN State Fair, but damn, fried pickles and cheese curds sound pretty damn tasty.

  5. says

    yazikus, I do not own a deep fryer for similar reasons. I miss the crunch of french fries, making wonderful battered fish, and so many other things, but deep fried foods are very much comfort food for me, and I end up using it far too much.

    I was at a nearby festival recently and was pretty impressed by the food, I am used to seeing nothing but fries, hot dogs, burgers and deep fried doughy things, but there was a lot more as well, Afghani, Greek, Ethiopian and many others. Of course, I say there was more than the usual fried stuff, but there was an awful lot of that as well. There must have been 10 places selling funnel cakes.

  6. yazikus says

    Travis, exactly. Too much temptation. Poutine does sound delicious.

    Since we are talking about food, I had an exciting culinary success over the weekend. I made a veggie lasagna, and in the cheese mixture I put: ricotta, heavy cream, egg, spices + stuff, Parmesan, shredded mozz. & then shredded some hakuri salad turnips & kohlrabi as well. It looked like all cheese, as the turnip & kohlrabi are both shredded and white. It was probably at 50-50 veggie to cheese ratio. When baked, it was delicious, filling and didn’t feel un-cheesy at all. Between that and all of the veggies in the red sauce I made (eggplant, mushrooms, squash, onions, etc) it was veggie-tastic. And I was able to use up the last week’s CSA leftovers.

  7. TonyJ says

    I have a deep fryer, and I only use it about once a year for fish and chips. It’s a pain in the ass to clean. That might keep some of you from over using one.

  8. gadfly47 says

    The best corn on the cob I ever tasted was at the Minnesota State Fair. It had been grilled in its own leaves over charcoal. The stand operator pulled back the leaves and used them as a handle as he dipped the entire ear in melted butter. He added salt and pepper and handed it to me. I’m salivating just thinking about it.

  9. inflection says

    Had “fried Coke” at the Texas state fair once. I was curious how they would do it.

    Turned out it was balls of batter with Coke in them, flash-fried and served with whipped cream. I dunno, I wouldn’t eat it every week but it was okay.

  10. Menyambal - torched by an angel says

    From the new foods page:

    Kimchi ‘n’ Curry Poutine

    Braised pork and potatoes smothered with curry gravy and cheddar cheese, then topped with kimchi and a poached egg.

    Oh jeeze. I want.

  11. Al Dente says

    A booth at one local county fair last summer offered “deep fried sushi.” It was fried fish with a wasabi batter. Not bad if you like wasabi.

  12. says

    I have never understood how anyone could expect it would turn out well if you combined all those fried foods with lots of sling-’em, scare-’em rides.

  13. says

    I saw the Kimchi ‘n’ Curry Poutine too, Menyambal, and had the same reaction. And the Tikka onna stick looks pretty good too — and the cannelloni. And the Italian dessert nachos. And…

    I’m very glad I’m nowhere near MN, as I’d have to be removed in a wheelbarrow.

  14. magistramarla says

    I made home made mu shu pork to use up left-over roast pork and vegetables.
    Much healthier than deep-frying.

  15. Thumper: Who Presents Boxes Which Are Not Opened says

    …I have an excuse to avoid this…

    Is Minnesotan cuisine really that bad? I’m envisioning a lot of cheese and lutefisk.