In the past, come state fair time, my ritual was to simply try all of the vendor concoctions created around the “year of the _______” theme.
But the Year of Popcorn is different. There’s only so much you can do with popcorn besides caramelize it, shake some flavoring on it, or craft it into the impressive but hardly edible “World’s Largest Popcorn Ball.” So the fair bypassed a competition this year, opting instead to just have a list available to journalists of first-time food variations.
Fair enough (so to speak). But I didn’t adhere too closely to the officially recognized choices, skipping the latest round of “Hey, let’s deep fry something we haven’t deep fried before” and replacing them with a few newbies that weren’t on the distributed list.