It's the special, Minnesota State Fair FOOD-ONLY Edition!
As I pointed out in the previous post, there is plenty to enjoy and celebrate at the Great Minnesota Get-Together. For many of us, however, the main attraction is really the food. It's a once-a-year binge-fest...a plethora of deep-fried goodness...a smorgasbord on a stick. It's an amazing opportunity to enjoy old favorites like cheese curds and corn dogs, while pursuing new culinary adventures, such as wild rice cheeseburgers and chocolate-covered bacon (don't knock it 'til you've tried it).
But why is the food so amazing? What is it that causes us to go so completely overboard, gastronomically-speaking? Well, they've figured out ways to deep fry--to perfection--candy bars and Oreos, mac-n-cheese and pickle chips, corn fritters with honey butter and spiral-cut potatoes, sliced razor-thin and drenched in cheese and sour cream. All just heavenly.
|It's Joe Mauer!|
And we haven't even touched the gold standard yet: the cheese curds.
So we're gonna skip the part where I ramble on and bore you to tears. The contribution of the State Fair food (other than heart disease, diabetes and rampant obesity) is clearly unabashed glee. There's nothing else to say. So let's let the pictures* be worth a thousand words...and a million calories! (And check back between now and September 6th...there may be additional pictures posted if there are additional trips to the Fair. Am I a dedicated blogger, or what?)
|Corn Fritters! Usually my first taste of the Fair each year...thanks, in large part, to their proximity to the main gates. And also, the honey butter.|
|Imported fresh each day from Ellsworth, WI...the original cheese curds. Nothing compares...nothing even comes close...|
|Pickle chips...I don't know where these moved to...used to be the Food Building. I liked 'em. Oh well...|
|Cinnie Smith mini cinnamon rolls. Well worth the hike to the far, far northern end of the Fairgrounds. If you have the time, stay and watch the staff make them...super fun!|
|Best Mini Donuts ever...right next to Ye Old Mill.|
|Chocolate-covered bacon from Famous Dave's. I really enjoyed this, but wouldn't need it every year.|
|Walleye Cakes from Giggle's Campfire Grill...one of my absolute must-haves at the Fair. Probably my second favorite item (after the cheese curds).|
|Best fries ever. And for reasons I can't explain, I have to get them from the booth by Empire Commons, not the Midway. I know they're the same. I can't help it.|
|Sweet Martha's...how can you not?! Again with the weird location issues...they have to come from the booth by the Grandstand. With lots of milk.|
|Danderlute Ratsbain agrees: gotta have the wild rice cheeseburger from the Food Building. Seriously great burger...and there's usually a coupon in the Blue Ribbon Book! SCORE.|
|Hot Dish on a Stick! Meatball - tater tot - meatball - tater tot - meatball...and a side of mushroom gravy. Dee-lish!|
|One might think that it's rather banal to get ice cream at the State Fair, since there are so many other choices. But this chocolate delectableness from the Dairy Building (Empire Commons) shouldn't be missed!|
|French Meadow Bakery...rockin' our world with French Toast Tots and Mushroom/Swiss Risotto Poppers. New faves!|
*These pictures span 3-4 years and a good half-dozen trips to the Fair. So the answers to your questions are:
|Mac-n-Cheese on a Stick from Axel's. Pretty simple. Pretty yummy.|
|Peaches and Cream - one of the items getting lots of critical acclaim this year. Am happy to report that it lives up to the hype! Fresh, fresh peaches, crunchy ginger snaps and soft serve. The perfect summery sundae.|
|Ma Ronning, this one's for you: the pork chop! Smokey, charred goodness...on a stick, of course.|
|Corn. The original "food on a stick."|
So there you have it, folks! Hope your appetites are whetted and your culinary imaginations are on fire!
See you at the Fair!________________________________________________
- No, I did not eat all this in one trip.
- Yes, I shared most of these things with other folks.
- No, I do not get tired of the grease/salt/fat/sugar, and if you do, well la-dee-dah and good for you. You go on with your healthy, healthy self.
- Yes, there are extra trips to the gym immediately before and after Fair season.