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State Fair of Texas Warmup: The Fried Creations Start Rolling In

State fair season is here, especially in northern states that don't have to wait till summer's swelter abates to have a little fried food fun. Iowa and Minnesota recently released their food menus for this year's events, and there's a whole lot more to eat than fried things on a stick. (There is a lot of on-a-stick, too.) Consider this a warmup for the State Fair of Texas.

In Minnesota it looks like the Blue Moon Drive-in Theaters is leading the creativity front. They're not even leaning on bubbling oil to get their food to delicious. Chop dogs feature diced hot dogs cooked on a flat griddle and served in a bread pocket. Don't forget to order yours with chili. They're also making caramel corn with liquid nitrogen, so cups of sweetened confection trail a fog of vapor in the warm summer air.

In the definitely freaky category, Axel's is serving up Wisconsin cheddar cheese nuggets breaded with cocoa puffs, fried and served with a chocolate dipping sauce. Can you picture a toddler going to town on these? The little brown nuggets of melted cheese are sure to require two-dozen napkins at least.

Iowa meanwhile, boasts 60 distinct foods served on a stick. In addition to traditional corn dogs, fair goers can order fried brownies on-a-stick, a soft, salted, chocolate-dipped almond pretzel on-a-stick and something called a coconut mountain, yes, on a stick

There's even a smoothie on a stick, which is thankfully not deep fried. The simple strawberry smoothie is frozen impaled on a stick, and served to those looking for more healthy options of refreshment on a hot summer day.

Speaking of health matters, you better hit the gym, Texans. It won't be long before we're talking about our own coronary on a stick, right here in Dallas.

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