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25 Deep-Fried Foods From the Texas State Fair

For years, county fairs have been at the forefront of deep-frying science, splicing and creating mutant “foods” that are all at once monstrous and wondrous. The Texas State Fair — the largest state fair in the country — holds a yearly competition for the most innovative deep-fried foods. Here are 25 fried Frankenfoods from fairs past:

1. Bubblegum

Photo: CC Collin Harvey on Flickr

It's actually bubblegum-flavored marshmallows, battered and deep fried and sprinkled with Chicklets. Do you chew this? Eat it? Who knows, but you can buy it.

2. Butter

Photo: CC mgerskup on Flickr

Frozen balls of butter, battered and fried and served with four sauces. Because why not.

3. Beer

Photo: CC Stacy Huggins on Flickr

Nope, this isn’t beer battered. This is beer: battered and fried. The beer is poured into little ravioli pockets which burst with scalding suds upon first bite.

4. Peanut Butter Banana Cheeseburgers

Photo: FoodBeast

Elvis would probably make a special trip to Texas just to see this.

5. Coke

Photo: CC L. Richarz on Flickr

An enterprising chef found a way to deep fry soda without the 3rd degree burns.

6. Chicken Fried Bacon

Photo: CC ladybugbkt on Flickr

This is self-explanatory. And probably delicious.

7. Jelly Belly Jelly Beans

Photo: CC RosieTulips on Flickr

It's really just batter with some Jelly Belly jelly beans mixed in, like a fritter on a sugar high.

8. Cadbury Crème Eggs

Photo: CC goodiesfirst on Flickr

Easter doesn’t have nearly enough fried foods... until now.

9. Pizza

Photo: CC Siggi Churchill on Flickr

It's not just pizza ingredients inside a ball of dough. No. It's an actual slice of pizza, breaded and fried.

10. Kool-Aid

Photo: CC nineminutes on Flickr

With an extra sprinkle of Kool-Aid powder over the top instead of powdered sugar.

11. French Fry Coated Hot Dog

Photo: CC phil.lees on Flickr

See? It exists.

12. Pecan Pie

Photo: CC erichcpeters on Flickr

There's probably not a more delicious way to gain five pounds.

13. Lattes

Photo: CC Traveling Fools of America on Flickr

This one is a bit of a misnomer, it seems; the fried part is a sweet dough, which is topped with coffee-flavored ice cream, whipped cream and shaved chocolate.

14. PB&J

Photo: CC bittermelon on Flickr

With a banana thrown in for good measure.

15. Salsa

Photo: thestir.com

Deep-fried condiments can't be a good thing, but according to some people, this is the best-tasting item at the fair. It's salsa mixed with masa, then rolled in crushed tortilla chips before frying.

16. Pop Tarts

Photo: CC RosieTulips on Flickr

It's hard to see, but there's a Pop Tart in there.

17. Margaritas

Photo: CC David Berkowitz on Flickr

Funnel cake batter made with margarita mixer, fried and soaked in more margarita, all served in a salt-rimmed glass.

18. Club Salad

Photo: New York Daily News

The thing about salad is that it’s good for you, usually. Not this time. This is a spinach wrap filled with ham, bacon, cheese, chicken, tomatoes, shredded lettuce and carrots, fried and served on a bed of lettuce.

19. S'mores

Photo: CC David Berkowitz on Flickr

It was only a matter of time.

20. Pumpkin Pie

Photo: CC Collin Harvey on Flickr

It's a pocket filled with pumpkin pie, rolled in cinnamon and ginger snaps, fried and served with whipped cream.

21. Pineapple Upside Down Cake

Photo: CC Blazenhoff on Flickr

Each item is battered and fried individually, skewered and served with whipped cream and a cherry. The "upside-down" part is up to you.

22. Deep Fried Cheesecake

Photo: CC Stacey Huggins on Flickr

Cheesecake filling wrapped in a tortilla, fried.

23. Oreos

Photo: CC Jenn Larsen on Flickr

These are amazing, actually.

And this year's winners, announced this week:

24. Fried Jambalaya: Best Taste

Photo: David Woo for The Dallas Morning News

25. Fried Bacon Cinnamon Roll: Most Creative

Photo: David Woo for The Dallas Morning News

Follow Cole on Twitter: @ColeGamble

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Job Alert: The UK Needs a Chicken Nugget Taste-Tester

Do you like highly-processed chicken molded into mushy, breaded bites? Are you willing to relocate to England? Can your palate distinguish a savory nugget from a mediocre one? Your dream job awaits, AJC.com reports.

British retail chain B&M recently posted a job listing calling for a "chicken nugget connoisseur" to help the company get feedback on their new line of frozen food products. The chosen applicant—or applicants—will get a monthly voucher worth £25 ($34) to spend on frozen goods. Job duties consist of eating nuggets and other items and then providing B&M feedback.

The post describes the position as "temporary," so it's unlikely there's opportunity for advancement. If you care to apply, B&M will accept a paragraph describing yourself and why you’d be good for the job—though if you actually have a CV full of previous nugget-related positions, we're confident they'd love to see it.

[h/t AJC.com]

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Animals
Switzerland Just Made It Illegal to Boil Live Lobsters
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No, lobsters don’t scream when you toss them into a pot of boiling water, but as far as the Swiss government is concerned, they can still feel pain. The path most lobsters take to the dinner plate is supposedly so inhumane that Switzerland has banned boiling lobsters alive unless they are stunned first, The Guardian reports.

The new law is based on assertions from animal rights advocates and some scientists that crustaceans like lobsters have complex nervous systems, making death by boiling incredibly painful. If chefs want to include lobster on their menus, they’re now required to knock them out before preparing them. Acceptable stunning methods under Swiss law include electric shock and the “mechanical destruction” of the lobster’s brain (i.e. stabbing it in the head).

The government has also outlawed the transportation of live lobsters on ice or in icy water. The animals should instead be kept in containers that are as close to their natural environment as possible until they’re ready for the pot.

Proponents of animal rights are happy with the decision, but others, including some scientists, are skeptical. The data still isn’t clear as to whether or not lobsters feel pain, at least in the way people think of it. Bob Bayer, head of the University of Maine’s Lobster Institute, told Mental Floss in 2014 that lobsters “sense their environment, but don’t have the intellectual hardware to process pain.”

If you live in a place where boiling lobsters is legal, but still have ethical concerns over eating them, try tossing your lobster in the freezer before giving it a hot water bath. Chilling it puts it to sleep and is less messy than butchering it while it’s still alive.

[h/t The Guardian]

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