2012 Iowa State Fair Food Contests Announced

State Fair FoodIt may only be April on the calendar, but it is already time to start thinking about the 2012 Iowa State Fair.

The official 2012 Iowa State Fair Booklet has been published [this year’s theme: “Nothing Compares” which is going to have us singing Sinead O’Connor’s breathy “Nothing Compares 2 U” for the next four months].

We’re proud to announce that AllSpice is sponsoring nearly a dozen State Fair food contests this year, across a broad range of cuisines:

  • Baked Bread – incorporate at least three different spices in the recipe.
  • Olive Oil BreadExtra-Virgin Olive Oil is the only fat source allowed in the recipe.
  • Omi’s Sauerbraten – Looking for the best roast, and also the best gravy/sauce. Two categories/changes to win: Beef Sauerbraten, and Hunters’ [game] Sauerbraten, plus overall favorite.
  • Ice Cream – Get creative and show us your best ice cream flavored with spices, chiles, peppers or herbs.
  • Traditional Vinaigrette – What can you do with balsamic vinegar and extra-virgin olive oil? Throw in some seasonings, and dazzle us with your dressing!
  • Chutney – Starting with fruit and/or nuts, sugar, vinegar, and spices, cook up a chutney that knocks our socks off.
  • Mustard – Little bitty mustard seeds: so tiny, but pack such a big and tasty punch. Show us your mad mustard skills.
  • Snack Mix – We’re looking for a few good snacks, Chex-style. No limit on the number and types of ingredients and seasonings in your snack mix, but extra points given for “Snack-ability” [not getting spice-coated fingers when we eat]. Three sub-categories to win: Salty, Chocolate, and Sweet-n-Salty, plus an overall winning favorite.
  • Curry! – Curry favor with us, and show us your best dish. Three categories: beef, chicken, and meatless/vegetarian, along with a grand overall favorite.

The top three entries in each category will win AllSpice gift certificates, and all entrants will receive a five-ounce bottle of balsamic vinegar as a thank-you for their participation.

You can find the complete list of rules, categories, and descriptions of all the food making contests at this link. Online entries are accepted at the State Fair offices beginning May 1.