Jun 18, 2010
As the weather warms, it’s only a matter of time before the fair rolls into town, bringing communities together for a few days of gazing at livestock, spinning on rickety carnival rides, and most importantly, eating mountains of delicious food. As a longtime connoisseur of fair food, I had the opportunity to visit the San Diego County Fair this past week, and let’s just say that I didn’t leave hungry.
Each year, the food vendors roll out all sorts of new treats to consume, some yummy and most that your typical cardiologist would gasp in horror at the very thought of putting something like that in your body. Fried foods are especially popular, with seemingly every food that is possible to dip in batter present and accounted for. In years past, deep-fried Snickers bars were a crowd favorite. Last year, deep-fried Oreo cookies and pickles, as well as chocolate dipped bacon were all the rage. So, as I headed out to the fair this year, I wondered how they would top themselves. I wasn’t disappointed, although I must admit that I did not have the courage to sample all of these new delicacies for myself.
The most talked about item this year was deep-fried Klondike bars, with a close runner-up being deep-fried Pop Tarts. Other popular treats included the “Zucchini Weenie,” which featured a hot dog implanted into a zucchini, then battered and, you guessed it, fried, and the “Hash Dog” which consisted of a hot dog, wrapped in hash browns and fried up. Less enticing to me were the chocolate-dipped pickles, deep-fried frog legs and, hold on to your heart, deep-fried butter. Yes, it is hard to imagine a less-healthy snack, but from my observations, there was no shortage of eager customers. In fact, while I also saw a booth selling fresh fruits and vegetables (unfried), it was devoid of customers each time I passed by. Apparently, healthy foods may have their place on our dinner tables, but when it comes to visiting the fair, most prefer to throw caution to the wind. And hey, if you are going to risk your life on a roller coaster operated by a Charles Manson look-alike, what’s a little deep-fried butter in the grand scheme of things? If you would like to see more of this year’s fair food, just click here and prepare to either drool or be disgusted.
So, what are your favorite fair foods? Have you tried any of the above-mentioned treats, or do you stick to more familiar faire, such as cinnamon rolls, candy apples and Kettle Corn?