Carnival food is a sure-fire way to hurt myself. I love it. It hates me. I still want it.
Welcome to my obsession with fair food. I’m assuming this blog post is a part one of many, so let’s just call this…
Unexpectedly Fried Things, the 2018 Edition
(a blog post in which America’s fairs try to kill me, one booth at a time)
Full disclosure: I didn’t eat these all during one event. I actually didn’t finish any of them. It may look like I have a death wish via deep fryer, but I really don’t. Plus, I’m supposed to be on a diet. Stupid diet.
Ah, Oreos, corporate America’s mass-produced answer to dessert. Oreos are two cardboard wafers created during someone’s daydream of chocolate–someone who in fact had no chocolate–and then filled with a gluey disk of extruded white stuff. Deep-fried, the cookie that famously stands up to a glass of milk becomes soggy, and the filing turns a weird yellowish color that makes you doubt snot should taste this sweet.
Verdict: ick! And it gets stuck in your molars. I ran into someone from the gym while I was eating it (which actually made it slightly tastier in its illicitness).
Twinkies are supposed to have a shelf-life measured in number of apocalypses you want to survive. The tangy chemical aftertaste is there to assure you that you’ll outlive both the zombies chasing you and mass-extinction-event veteran cockroaches who’ve already survived the ice age. However, a Twinkie evidently cannot go up against a deep fryer. The filling totally disappears during its plunge into the oil. In fact, I wasn’t sure if I’d received an actual Twinkie instead of a random lump of fried dough.
Verdict: disappointing. My faith in Twinkies as the bartering currency of the future has been destroyed. Note to self: invest in candied roaches.
Deep-Fried Snickers Bar
As the national food of Scotland (alongside haggis), deep-fried Snickers has a big Robert Burns-sized reputation to live up to, and this is the first bit of fried decadence that finally succeeds. It was insanely rich and chocolatey. Everything inside the chocolate bar melted into a gooey instant-diabetes delivery mechanism.
Verdict: holy sugar coma. Super delicious, but definitely the fast track to injuring yourself, both by requiring future dialysis and by killing your dignity. Like zip-lining, I did it and lived*. I will never do it again. Also, I chomped into it in the wind, so there was no way I was hiding my overindulgence from anyone at the fair. (Have I mentioned I’m supposed to be a fitness instructor?)
Deep-Fried Pumpkin Pie
I rounded the back corner of my local county fair’s tractor exhibit and stumbled to a halt in front of a vendor for deep-fried pumpkin pie. I usually like my pumpkin pie with whipped cream right before I slide into a turkey coma, but in the spirit of science, I went for it. I got a modestly sized wedge of warm pie nestled in a crispy exterior. The whole thing wasn’t overly sweet. Until I dumped a pile of cinnamon sugar on it.
Verdict: nirvana. I experienced a satori brain flash biting into this thing. It was so good, I had to stuff some in my spouse’s mouth. (He confiscated the rest of it from me.) If you’re a pumpkin pie fan and you get a chance to try this, do it. Dooooo eeeeeet. My God in heaven, it was tasty.
Huzzah to the beef jerky!
My last outing of the summer was to the Bristol Renaissance Faire in Wisconsin. I bypassed the ye olde turkey legs, dill pickles, and curly fries in favor of the beef jerky vendor. Out of original, spicy, and teriyaki, I picked the latter. (I still have a raging sweet tooth despite all the abuse I put myself through this summer. Or maybe, because of it.) For my five bucks, I got a large swath of delicious handmade meat substance with the perfect amount of flavor.
Verdict: awesome. Everything I could have hoped for. A perfect end to the season.
But now that I’ve tried all these things, will have to have eat the weird gator bits or turkey testicles in the future? Tune in next time…
*I have never actually been on a zip line.
What am I up to? I’m working on edits to the third (and final) book in the Rise of the Masks series. I also just started writing Josie Tucker #5. If you sign up for my newsletter, you won’t miss a single exciting update.