Labor Day is the official start of the State Fair season in Texas with the announcement of the fried food kings for the year. Yesterday was no disappointment as the media gathered inside the Embarcadero yesterday morning. With cameras loaded and necks stretched we peered into the eyes of each judge as they quietly nibbled the likes of Fried Nutella and Chicken-Fried Meatloaf.
There were eight finalists looking to walk away with the 2013 Big Tex Choice Award for either the Most Creative or Best tasting. Winning this award historically means that you cold expect up to an additional $250,000 in sales for the year – and a plastic replica of Big Tex.
In the end the judges found the Deep Fried Cuban Roll created by Isaac Rousso, the genius behind the Fried Pop Tart, to reign supreme in taste, and Justin and Rudy Martinez’ Fried Thanksgiving Dinner to be the most creative. Below we have the descriptions of each winner, or you can check out all eight of the finalists here. When it comes to the Fry-O-Lator’s at the State Fair, there are no losers.
Deep Fried Cuban Roll – A filling of slow cooked pork shoulder, chopped ham, Swiss cheese, pickles, and secret sauce is spread onto a slice of Swiss cheese, rolled up in pastry dough, and deep fried. Roll is served with a side of mojo sauce for dipping.
Fried Thanksgiving Dinner – Mama’s homemade stuffing and diced roasted turkey are rolled in a ball. Next it’s dipped in southern cream corn and rolled in seasoned corn meal – all fried to a crispy golden brown. Served with old fashion giblet brown gravy. The zesty orange cranberry sauce fills your dipping needs and results in a complete thanksgiving dinner.
Next year we would like to see actual food judges take to the stage such as the genius James Beard award winning writer at the Dallas Observer, Alice Laussade. She was nominated for a James Beard for her comedic writing about the Fair and we find it curious the good people running this show wouldn’t want to capitalize on this with a parade, or allow her to be the voice of Big Tex for a day. A Cheap Bastard Day would be pretty cool. I envision half price fried balls of meat with frothy dollar beers.