Saturday, August 6, 2011

Justin and Nana Eat Weird Stuff For Your Entertainment (US Edition): Funnel Cake

My mother, sister, and I went to the Ohio State Fair to see the legendary Loretta Lynn in concert. (She's 76 and, for the record, sounds better than ever). American State Fairs are known for many things, like livestock exhibitions, midway rides, and butter sculptures. More than anything else, they're famous for frying absolutely anything.

Funnel Cake is a fair staple which I've actually never had before. What is a funnel cake? You take batter, spatter it into sizzling hot oil, deep-fry it, and cover it in powdered sugar. In other words, it's manna from heaven.


If you look closely behind my sister Jackie and me in the picture above, you can see that the funnel cake stand also offers deep-fried Twinkies. This always puzzled me, as I was under the impression that Twinkies were already deep-fried, but I guess there's no harm in meta-frying (see definition of "meta" here).

The fried food options at the fair are truly multifarious. Here are some of the many foods fair vendors will immerse in batter and boiling oil for your consumption:

First, why let Twinkies have all the fun? Why not fry Oreos, Reese's cups, or a full-size Snickers bar?

Get a taste of out-of-state exotica with deep fried whoopie pies, all the way from Kentucky!

Don't have a sweet tooth? Satiate your craving for savory with fried pickles!

Finally, there's always the elegant, Zen-like simplicity of plain old "Fried Dough."

And believe me, I know zen-like simplicity. I live in Japan!