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August 10, 2010

Top Ten frightening state fair foods

corn dogsThe idea for this week's list comes from Owl Meat Gravy, who reminded me that it is the time of year for "disgusting fried state fair food."

The Howard County Fair opened its week-long run Saturday. The Maryland State Fair is Aug. 27 to Sept. 6.

So without further ado, here is the list:

Top Ten frightening state fair foods

1. Deep-fried butter

This is the creation of Abel Gonzales Jr., the culinary genius behind a range of deep-fried innovations at the State Fair of Texas. The fried butter took the Texas fair's "most creative" award when it was introduced last year. I think it should also have won "most homicidal."

2. Deep-fried Coca Cola

Two nutritional villains come together in this 830-calorie diet buster, another Gonzales creation. 

3. Chicken-fried bacon

No chickens were harmed in the creation of this treat.

4.  Doughnut burger

Attention, McDonald's bun-maker John Paterakis: Krispy Kremes are moving in on your territory.

5. Turkey Legs

Take a lean protein, supersize it, leave it in its skin, deep fry it -- and create a 1,100-calorie monster, according to

6. Deep-fried cheesecake

State fair concessionaires aren't the only ones peddling this artery clogger. So's Paula Deen. That should tell you something.

7. Deep-fried mac-n-cheese

See Paula Deen warning, above.

8. Deep-fried Twinkies 

9. Deep-fried lattes

Another culinary gift from Texas

10. Deep-fried guacamole

Take a heart-healthy fat and crisp it up in an unhealthy one. Evens out, right?

Sun file photo

Posted by Laura Vozzella at 5:22 AM | | Comments (7)


Just thinking about some of these concoctions is making me sick to my stomach.

The most foul thing I've ever sampled at a county fair (in Washington state) was some battered and deep fried spam (had to toss it, as just tasting it set my gag reflex off), but almost everything on this list sounds even more disgusting.

I realize no one is forcing anyone to eat this crap, but I just can't help asking over and over again... why do this?

I'm not shy about my love for fried things, even at the state fair (funnel cake comes to mind...) but jeez, all of these sound absolutely disgusting. Even the bacon, which is something I thought I would never say. Gack.

While I share a mild disgust and nausea over some of these items - I have to give them at least one little spot of credit.

Fair cuisine is the very epitome of sometimes food.

It's when deep-friend guacamole shows up on the menu at Taco Bell, that we all need to be deeply afraid.

Even though I'm doing my best to eat fresher and healthier in my every day life, I can't help but have a morbid curiosity about at least a few of those items -- in a manner not unlike one of those food travel shows where Anthony Bourdain goes abroad to feast on pig snouts or duck embryos.

You can also get fried cheesecake at the Thai Restaurant on Greenmount Ave. in Waverly. It'll be a happy death for me.

Nacho Mamas had deep fried mac n cheese on their menu for a while. They still might, it's been a year or so since I've been. Either way, it was wonderfully delicious, but I'll venture to say that having the same dish at the fair would most likely not be as good.

I TGIFridays also had a deep fried mac & cheese appetizer.

While many things on that list sound disgusting...i'm thinking the deep fried cheesecake might be yummy.

And every year, come fair time, I get one order of deep-fried oreos. Oh so good!!

Cream puffs. Wisconsin State Fair. Once a year indulgence. Not deep fried.

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About this blog

You are reading the archives. For updated blog posts about the Maryland food scene, see Richard Gorelick's new Baltimore Diner blog.
Richard Gorelick was appointed The Baltimore Sun's restaurant critic in September 2010. Before joining the paper staff fulltime, he contributed freelance criticism and features articles about food to area and regional publications. Along the way, he dispatched for short-distance trucking companies, shilled for cultural non-profits, and assisted in cognitive neurology research – never the subject, always the control.

He takes restaurants seriously but not himself, and his favorite restaurant is the one you love, too.

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