State Fair Fried Foods Unveiled

State Fair of Texas 2013 Big Tex fried food awards exalts Nutella and fried meatloaf

State Fair reveals fried food finalists for 2013 Big Tex Choice Awards

Fried King Ranch casserole at State Fair of Texas
Big Tex Choice Awards loves fried food. Photo by Marc Lee
Big Tex, State Fair of Texas
The State Fair opens September 25. Photo by Marc Lee
Fried King Ranch casserole at State Fair of Texas
Big Tex, State Fair of Texas

The day has arrived, when your arteries quiver in fear: The State Fair of Texas has announced its ninth annual Big Tex Choice Awards in which vendors compete for Best Taste and Most Creative new foods.

A group of contestants presented their creations in August; the field has been narrowed to eight. A panel of three judges will pick winners in two categories. Last year's winners were deep fried jambalaya (Best Taste) and fried bacon cinnamon roll (Most Creative).

This year, the finalists include one made with trendy ingredient Nutella and a clever one that sums up an entire meal. Most are savory; only two are sweet.

  • Awesome Deep Fried Nutella
  • Deep Fried Cuban Roll
  • Fernie’s Deep Fried King Ranch Casserole
  • Fried Thanksgiving Dinner
  • Golden Fried Millionaire Pie
  • Southern Style Chicken-Fried Meatloaf
  • Spinach Dip Bites
  • Texas Fried Fireball

To the descriptions:

Awesome Deep Fried Nutella – Cream cheese and Nutella are whipped and spread over flaky phyllo dough sheets, rolled up and deep fried. Served with a drizzle of honey and shaved almonds.

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.

Fernie’s Deep Fried King Ranch Casserole – This stick-to-your-ribs, Texas-shaped creation is cheesy, salty, spicy goodness dipped in zesty Southwestern egg wash, coated in panko bread crumbs and deep fried until golden brown. Served with a side of red, white and blue tortilla chips and your choice of our homemade “salsafied” sour cream or cheesy queso.

Fried Thanksgiving Dinner – Mama’s homemade stuffing and diced roasted turkey are rolled in a ball. Next it’s dipped in Southern cream corn, rolled in seasoned cornmeal and fried to a golden brown. Served with old-fashioned giblet brown gravy. The zesty orange cranberry sauce fills your dipping needs and results in a complete Thanksgiving dinner — fried.

Golden Fried Millionaire Pie – Sweetened, fluffy cream cheese filling is loaded with golden pineapple and Texas pecans then wrapped in a flaky pie crust and fried to a golden brown. Topped with whipped cream, toasted coconut and candied pecans.

Spinach Dip Bites – Creamy and delicious spinach artichoke dip bites are coated with crispy tortilla chips and flash-fried until golden brown. Bites are served with salsa for an additional kick.

Southern Style Chicken-Fried Meatloaf – Homemade meatloaf slices are coated in an authentic Texas chicken-fried breading and deep fried until golden brown. Served with garlic mashed potatoes, Texas cream gravy and a ketchup-brown sugar glaze for dipping.

Texas Fried Fireball – Pimento cheese, pickles, cayenne pepper and bacon are rolled into a ball, dipped in buttermilk, covered with a jalapeño-infused batter and deep fried. Served with chipotle ranch for dipping.

The 2013 State Fair of Texas will launch with a parade through downtown Dallas on Friday, September 27, at noon. The fair runs September 27-October 20.