Monday, August 18, 2008

Battle of the Fair Food

Summer is an unending schedule of small town fairs and festivals. It's as if every town wants to get in their licks before the summer is over.

This weekend there were no less than three festivals within 20 miles of here. Elburn Days is a fun tradition, South Elgin Riverfest is a bit further away and there was also the Steam Power Show in Sycamore.

Since my energies are at a low point I had to choose.......I made it to two! Unfortunately I was only able to make it into Elburn early on Saturday morning. My plan was to try and meet up with one of my local readers.

When I arrived the 4-H judging was underway. I'm going to try and post a video tomorrow of all the 4-H hogs walking around and around in the judging area. It was a mob scene and they were noisy. The kids were doing their best to keep the hogs under control.

In the center of the park I found the fair food booths were having a standoff. On one side the outsiders.


They were serving the most stomach churning combination of foods.

Wisconsin Cheddar Cheese Curds (fried, I'm sure)
Onion Blossom
Coconut Shrimp
Corn Dogs
Onion Rings
Texas Style Cheese Fries
Mozzarella Sticks
Battered Mushrooms
Jalapeno Poppers
Deep Fried Snickers
Deep Fried Twinkies

Wash it all down with Lemonade or Strawberry shake-up.

Opposite was the local contender, serving mostly Chicago style Italian food items.


But I walked the gauntlet between them to reach my goal.....the church tent! Church ladies bake a ridiculous number of pies and of course it's my duty to TEST DRIVE SOME PIE!!!

This was a slice of blueberry pie.


The filling was strictly out of the can but the crust was excellent, very flaky and if you look carefully you'll see that it was lightly dusted with some cinnamon. I swear that a pie crust pie (no filling) would be fine with me. I love flaky pie crust.

There was also apple, strawberry rhubarb and some other flavors available but since I was joining the Farmer at another festival later in the day I had to pace myself.

Unfortunately since I was there very early in the day I missed my local reader. Sorry Mary!!

NOTE: Come back tomorrow and we'll meet some of the people at Elburn Days including one of my Peeps!


Significant Snail said...

1) Love the musicical selection with your post

2)Extremely jealous of that beautiful slice of blueberry pie!

Louise said...

Good pie crust without the filling is QUITE all right with me. When I make pies, I always make more crust than I need and just bake it by itself. Healthy and slimming, I know, but OH SO GOOD!

belladella said...

Oh, that looks so good. Is it okay to eat pie for breakfast? :) I so wish I had some.

Simple Answer said...

Whatever you eat at a fair is calorie free. That includes the deep fried snickers.

Molly said...

Okay, I must ask: what exactly is a Wisconsin Cheddar Cheese Curd? I love cheese and have never tried this before. That I know about.

Mary said...

Deep fried SNICKERS?! Yikes! that pie looks great -- I think I gained five lbs. just looking at it!

Vee ~ A Haven for Vee said...

So you didn't try the fried Wisconsin cheese curds? How are we supposed to know if they're any good? :D

Glad that you are feeling energetic enough to make it to two fairs! It was the annual balloon festival here and I missed the entire event.


I get you. I so get you.

Jill said...

Wow... another fair! I hope your feet felt good enough to walk around.

As for meeting your peeps - how cool is that that you were going to hang with a fellow reader. :)

Cindy La Ferle said...

Thanks for the nostalgic summer visit to the fair -- and wonderful music to accompany it! In Michigan, we have a state fair coming up soon, and you've inspired me to attend! Hope your summer is unfolding nicely.

Mary said...

wisconsin cheese curds are colby cheese curds.. before they are pressed into the mold and cured for a while. They are lightly battered and deep fried and wonderful

Glad you liked the pie. The festival was wonderful. And Louise sprinkle it with cinnamon sugar before you bake the crust leftovers and call it "poor man's pie"

C.C. said...

Oh my gosh, that pie looks so very very good! Enjoy these waning days of summer!

BittersweetPunkin said...

WOW...and I'm on a diet again. I adore pie too. Whenever I bake one I take the leftover pie dough and spread it with jam, cinnamon and sugar..then roll it up and cut it in little pieces then Grandmother used to do this and my family looks forward to it too!!
Have a great day...btw...LOVED the bowling ball ideas..if I ever come across one at a yard sale I'll know just what to do with it!!

lifeinredshoes said...

Mmmm, pie.

Heather said...

That piece of pie looks just so all-American. I like a good slice of peach pie myself. YUMMMMM....

Suzanne said...

S. Snail - Thanks. I liked this version better than the original. The pie was very good. Wish you were here.

Louise - Let's get together and make some pie crust pie. Perhaps just lightly dusted with some cinnamon, sugar and butter.

Belladella - OK? Pie is one of the four major food groups and is perfectly appropriate for breakfast.

S.A. - I'm so glad you're visiting me from Jordan today. I agree that at a fair everything is zero calories. I haven't yet tried the fried snickers.

Molly - A cheese curd is kind of like a very dense glob of cheese......and they squeak!

Mary - Yes, deep fried Snickers. I'm surprised you haven't tried it at home.

Vee - I should have tried the cheese curds. There is so much interest in these things I'm going to go on a mission to find some and fry them up using a recipe I found. The Canadians (Quebec) have come up with a most ridiculous way to eat cheese curds. Stay tuned because I'm going to have to cover this also.

Liberty Post - As my resident Canadian do you know the dish I'm talking about? Come on, I'm counting on you. TAG - I get you too!!!

Jill - Oh, the fairs and festivals are never-ending around here. We gotta make our own fun, don't you know. I had to skip the Sugar Grove Corn Boil a while back. A girl can only take so much.

Cindy - You've got to go the fair and report back to us. I've got more fairs coming up, including a festival where my house band, Tin Horse will be playing.

Mary - I'm so sorry I missed you. Tell the church ladies they did a spectacular job. Psst....I'm working on an apron design that I call "The Church Lady" apron!

C.C. - Omigosh, I'm so happy that you stopped by today. I'm really surprised that you're up and running on that computer. Hey everybody, C.C. just moved to Africa......Jill is in India and Simple Answer is in Jordan. Quite the globe trotters, these ladies.

Punkin - I do somewhat the same thing except that I've never tried it with jam. Yum, I'm going to have to do that soon.

Red Shoes - Yay to pie.

Heather- Yes, I always think of pie as being very All American.

Thanks everyone for visiting today. I appreciate your company and your supportive comments over the past few days.

- Suzanne

Lisa said...

That pie looks sooooo delicious. Now I must find some-lol. Nice photos of the fair.

Shelly G and Hope P said...

I love this post... because the walk of treats is exactly how a county fair is... I love going to ours because most of the food booths are the same as they were when I was a child... My biggest problem is deciding where I will place my food vote... and that is such a tough choice... but I can tell you if we had the choice of pie... I would be there :)~