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The Orange County Fair ended last weekend, but throngs of fried food aficionados turned up to get their fair (sorry) share of deep fried Oreos, Snickers, Twinkies, and even fried cheese on a stick. While that might sound like groundbreaking fried fare, it's nothing compared to the Indiana State Fair, where this year the pièce de résistance is -- wait for it -- the doughnut burger: a cheeseburger sandwiched between two Krispy Kreme glazed doughnuts.
While the Krispy Kreme burger isn't groundbreaking -- a cheddar cheese bacon version found itself into Google's NYC cafeteria a few years ago -- we thought the trans fat ban would have at least silenced the burger's sizzle. Not so in Indiana, where the brains behind the state fair's doughnut burger is the Reas family, long-time fair concessionaires and Southern Indiana residents, who invented the $6.50 sweet-meets-salty (meets coronary) creation. Dennis Reas, who sells the doughnut burgers alongside his wife, Cheryl, spoke to The Indianapolis Star Press last week, saying, "You just have to have something new to keep people entertained." While the family originally came up with the doughnut burger concept a few years ago, they didn't start selling it until this year's Florida State Fair. So far, it's been a hit with fair patrons like Stacy Hine, 32, who took a bite of her doughnut bacon burger and exclaimed to the Star Press, "That's awesome. Seriously, that is so good."
As if the doughnut cheeseburger alone isn't enough, for an extra charge guests can top it with bacon, egg, and for a healthy twist, lettuce, tomato and onion. Reas also said he may start offering the burger with a jelly topping, which was a surprisingly common request at previous fair stops. Another surprise? The fact that Indiana only ranks 17 out of 51 on the list of America's fattest states, because just a few paces down from the doughnut burger stand was another one selling deep fried butter: chunks of chilled butter coated in cinnamon, dipped in batter and deep fried. No word on whether the stand -- or the fair -- was equipped with a defibrillator.
Christie Bishop also blogs at PardonMyCrumbs.com.