There are a lot of things to love about Minnesota. First and foremost, they were home to Prince, but they also have the lakes, the wildlife, and an uncanny ability to categorize everything mixed with cool-whip as a salad. Minnesota really is an amazing place. Which is why it comes as no surprise that their state fair is going to blow the doors off what you thought you could expect from fair food.
Their list of 2016 25 new menu items was just announced and it looks like something we all need to appreciate together. It includes creations that seem tasty beyond our wildest dreams and others that have seeped up from the darkest depths of our collective drunken-munchies nightmares.
We pulled a collection of our favorites:
A modern, mid-westernized version of the Hawaiian Spam musubi, except with an egg and some wasabi. Not where we expected Minnesota’s head to be at, but it’s a bold start.
Candied Bacon Donut Sliders
That’s what we’re talking about. Candied bacon in a mini-doughnut sandwich, glazed in chocolate red wine ganache. Send help.
Paneer On A Spear
Deep fried with an Indian flair. Seasoned paneer cheese coated with a local craft beer batter, fried, and served with tomato garlic chutney. A new take on an old classic, this is something we could get into, unlike the…
Deep Fried Nacho Supreme
Pepper jack cheese cubes coated with a mixture of crushed seasoned tortilla chips and nacho cheese, then deep-fried, covered with taco meat, guacamole, more nacho cheese and sour cream, and served with jalapeños on the side. No. Go home Minnesota, you’re drunk.
A fish-shaped (carp, get it? Minnesota has mad puns) buttermilk miso waffle cone filled with balsamic-roasted strawberry compote and topped with vanilla ice cream, graham cracker crumble, and a fresh strawberry.
Macaroni and Cheese with Cheese Curds
It is exactly what it sounds like: piles of cheese on top of piles of cheese on top of noodles. A comfort food if there ever was one.
Cheesy French Onion Monkey Bread
Savory, pull-apart artisan bread loaf filled with caramelized onions, cheese and beef broth, then baked in a wood-fired oven. Even knowing what we know about wood fire ovens, it’s no excuse to walk away from this one.
New Orleans gumbo meet middle American french fries in a weird kind of poutine? The gumbo is made with andouille sausage, chicken, bell peppers, onions, celery and a rich roux-based sauce. A combination none of us knew we wanted to try, but now we’re all fry-curious.
Contrary to how it looks, this might be the healthiest thing at the fair. It consists of a Lamb dog served hot in a bun with garlic sautéed kale, raw fermented sauerkraut, quinoa and honey mustard drizzle. It’s a hot dog through and through but it might be a healthy relief from things like…
Deep Fried Grilled Cheese Bites
They are exactly what they sound like and, deep down, an 8-year-old version of myself is losing his sh*t right now.
Reuben Pickle Dog
This is just a lazy-mans deconstructed Reuben—right? A dill pickle spear with sauerkraut and Thousand Island dressing wrapped in a slice of corned beef.
Last but not least we have cheese-flavored SPAM that has been cubed, battered and deep-fried, served with a side of ranch dressing. Because, in what world is one spam item enough?