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The Deep-Fried Review of the N.C. State Fair or I Can’t Believe I Ate That

Gentle Readers, though The Practical Cook no longer wears the crown or sash of Deep Fried Ambassador, her commitment to Fried remains strong as always. This past weekend, Team Practical Cook headed to the fair to try, well, almost one of everything.

Deep Fried Mini Cinnamon Rolls with Bacon Sprinkles

Deep Fried Mini Cinnamon Rolls with Bacon Sprinkles

This year’s sensation is the Deep-Fried Mini Cinnamon Roll with Bacon Sprinkles. Hot, sticky, and bacony. Wow, just wow. It was disturbingly delicious. We scraped off the bits for the Eldest so she could remain true to her vegetarian ways.

How was it? Roll the tape:

We also tried the Deep-Fried Girl Scout Cookies (aka, Caramel Delites) and were less wowed by them. Beautiful, but empty.

Deep Fried Girl Scout Cookies: Caramel Delites (aka Samoas)

Deep Fried Girl Scout Cookies: Caramel Delites (aka Samoas)

The single most requested item: fried okra from the State Farmers Market food stand. It was the bomb, as always. That was lunch. Followed by corn and an apple dumpling. I actually lost count of the desserts.

Fried okra from the State Farmers Market food cart. It is a family favorite.

Fried okra from the State Farmers Market food cart. It is a family favorite.

So if you are heading to the fair this year, do not go halfway. Upon hearing that certain individuals weren’t planning to eat anything fried, the Eldest offered a mildly Elvis-like sneer and said, “why bother going?” And that is how I know I’m raising my children properly.

If you don't eat fried, why bother going to the fair? -- The Eldest

If you don’t eat fried, why bother going to the fair? — The Eldest

If you haven’t been to the fair in a while, consider going on a weekday, or early. It’s not as crowded, and it is a lot of fun. Don’t miss the endless samples in the made in NC tent and the Kerr Scott building. Also, we love the oversized vegetables and creative art made from them.

Say pumpkin pie!

Say pumpkin pie!

This is our fall family tradition. We go, we eat an obnoxious amount of Fried, and we break every rule of common sense. Then we go home and have a nice salad. Have you been to the fair this year? What fried goodness did you try?

Fearless on the Ferris Wheel.

Fearless on the Ferris Wheel.

Send your celery and carrot sticks to practical cook at gmail dot com. Connect on Facebook: The Practical Cook Blog. (Thanks in advance for spreading The Practical Cook Blog word. Press “like” on Facebook today!)

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Coming up Friday, Broccoli Pasta Recipe.

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First Time at the Fair: The Practical Cooks Junior Review (And Love-A-Fair with video)

Gentle Readers, The Practical Cook is proud to introduce today’s guest bloggers, The Practical Cooks Junior. As first time fair-goers, their perspective is energizing and a reminder that a field trip is a worthy investment of time and energy.

Let’s hear from TPCs Jr, shall we? Roll the tape:

To quote the Youngest upon arrival: “They have everything in the world here.” Yes, yes they do.

Stick Together at the Fair: We Descend Like a Barrel of Monkeys

Stick Together at the Fair: We Descend Like a Barrel of Monkeys

First, the Eldest in her own words, her journalistic debut, because nothing is wasted on a writer:

The Eldest's First Trip to the Fair, Journal Entry

The Eldest's First Trip to the Fair, Journal Entry

Here’s a transcript of the Eldest’s journal entry, with a little editorial clean-up:

I went to the state fair. It was fun. There were animals. There was fried food. There were rides. We went on the Ferris wheel today. I saw the animals. I ate a hot dog. I ate a fried okra. I ate a fried Oreo. I ate an apple dumpling. I drank lemonade and a cider.

If you wondered if TPC Jr was related to me in the food department, there you go.

Deep Fried Okra from the Farmer's Market Wagon: Group Favorite!

Deep Fried Okra from the Farmer's Market Wagon: Group Favorite!

Though the Eldest mentions okra as singular, let me tell you, she chose to eat more of this than the ear of corn her sister had. It was in fact that good, and every member of the crew, including all Complicated Vegetarians, like it. We’ll be going back for more.

Apple Dumpling: From Smitty's, These Rock in Ways I Can't Express

Apple Dumpling: From Smitty's, These Rock in Ways I Can't Express

Speaking of the CVs, witness the three-straw action on the apple cider freezie, found in Heritage Circle.

Apple Cider Freezie: Another Refreshing Delight (as Witnessed Here)

Apple Cider Freezie: Another Refreshing Delight (as Witnessed Here)

But we weren’t the only ones dining. We also got to see some piglets and a calf having breakfast:

Piglets Need to Eat Too!

Piglets Need to Eat Too!

And of course, we had to take the ceremonial photo in front of the overlarge produce:

The Junior Deep Fried Crew + The Pumpkins

The Junior Deep Fried Crew + The Pumpkins

This just in, if you’re afraid of heights, and the Youngest isn’t, the Ferris Wheel can be a challenge (“sit down, mommy’s trying not to barf”). However, it was a highlight of the trip for everyone:

Ferris Wheel: We got the Carolina Blue car, much to the joy of the Eldest.

Ferris Wheel: We got the Carolina Blue car, much to the joy of the Eldest.

Special thanks to my guest bloggers today, for the great review and for generally being awesome.

The Eldest, Having Just Enjoyed Maple Butter (from the fair) in Oatmeal

The Eldest, Having Just Enjoyed Maple Butter (from the fair) in Oatmeal

The Youngest Masters the Art of Mobile Eating

The Youngest Masters the Art of Mobile Eating

The Corn Husk Dolls, Because TPC's Jr Want to Share

The Corn Husk Dolls, Because TPC's Jr Want to Share

Do you remember your first trip to the fair? Have you taken your kids? Share your stories in the comments below, or Tweet with #ncstatefair as the hashtag. (And do please comment and “like,” the Youngest is very metrics driven and will inquire how many people “liked” this. What can I say, future Social Media expert.)

Send thoughts and queries (cooking ones, not just fried ones) to practical cook at gmail dot com. Connect on Facebook: The Practical Cook Blog. (Thanks in advance for spreading The Practical Cook Blog word. Press “like” on Facebook today!)

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Tomorrow, we wrap things up with Highlights from the N.C. State Fair: Top 5 List.

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