‘Deconstructed’ Fair Food Celebrates Coliseum Expansion
June 19, 2014 — TheStatehouseFile.com
INDIANAPOLIS – The theme for this year’s Indiana State Fair is “Reconstructed/Deconstructed,” which has given a handful of food vendors an opportunity to try some renovated recipes as they compete to offer the fair’s signature food.
Fair officials chose the theme because it’s the Year of the Coliseum, which just underwent a $63 million renovation.
On Wednesday in the Grand Hall, celebrity panelists sampled entries and offered insight in what is essentially the first round of judging for the 2014 Indiana State Fair Signature Food Competition.
The judges were Alyssa Garnett, Indiana State Fair Queen; Jolene Ketzenberger, founder and editor of www.EatDrinkIndy.com; Jason Gardner, men’s head basketball coach at Indiana University-Purdue University at Indianapolis; Kevin Freeman, WFMS morning show host; Greg Browning, WJJK morning show host; and Nikki Miller, WJJK afternoon show host.
“We have a really tough job,” Miller said with a laugh. The judges sampled five new foods and offered their comments to the public, which can vote online starting June 23.
The five creations were:
- Cheeseburger Basket on a Stick from Barto’s Catering, which consists of fresh seasoned ground beef and sharp aged cheddar cheese tucked in a hash brown potato ball and rolled in seasoned bread crumbs and deep-fried to golden brown. It is served on a stick.
- The Mac Daddy from Gobble Gobble, which is Gobble Gobble’s signature homemade macaroni and cheese topped with its own pulled pork BBQ turkey.
- Funnel Cake Ice Cream Sandwich from Urik Concessions, which consists of creamy, soft-serve vanilla ice cream sandwiched between two golden brown mini funnel cakes topped with powdered sugar and a drizzle of chocolate sauce.
- Fruit Twister Shake-up from Goodwin Family Products, which is made from fresh lemons, oranges, pineapple and strawberries that are shaken with sugar or Splenda, ice and water.
- Colossal Grilled Cheese Sandwich with a Salted Chocolate Caramel Shake, from the American Dairy Association, which includes a grilled cheese sandwich made of three columns of breaded mozzarella and American cheese, all on sour dough bread. It is accompanied by a salted chocolate caramel milkshake.Andy Klotz, state fair spokesman, said these five signature foods give a preview of the fantastic food that will be available come fair time.
Monica Urick, from Urik Concessions, said the company is a multiple-time Indiana State Fair Signature Food Competition champion, with various forms and styles of food in the past. This year, they are vying for the top spot with the “Funnel Cake Ice Cream Sandwich.”
“There’s always staple at the fair that people have to come and get, that they want to get, that they look forward to every year. For some people, it’s a corn dog. For some people, it’s a rib eye sandwich, a funnel cake or an elephant ear,” Urick said. “But then people like to try things that are different or new and try to mix things up a little bit.
All of these selections – and many more – will be available at the fair, which takes place Aug. 1-17.