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Good Food, Fatty Food, Blue Food


The California State Fair opens today at Cal Expo with new treats and old favorites.

New foods and cooking ideas will be on display.  Some of the food is good for you…some is not.  This year, you’ll find spaghetti ice cream –which does not taste like it sounds, bacon served in ways you never imagined,  deep fried watermelon and a deep-fried-pineapple-upside-down cake in the form of a lollipop.  

Tony Cardinali of Cardinale Sweet Treats is responsible for the spaghetti ice cream and the deep-fried fruit.  He says sometimes the food is as much an event as an edible item:   

"Camera comes out, they take a picture, take a bite. It seems like, with our food, I’ve never seen people so much pictures of their food.”

While there is a lot of food of questionable nutritional value, the fair will offer healthy alternatives. 

Nancy Koch supervises the urban gardening and state agriculture displays.  She says every day at the fair you can learn how to use healthy food in your cooking:

“We’ve invited chefs, farmers, we even have a master gardener, we have a food truck group that are gonna come in and prepare different meals based upon picking the crop out of the garden and then preparing it right before your eyes with our outdoor grill.”

For the food vendors, fair time is profit time.  Adriana Johnson manages the Allstars Dips display.  She says the dried dip mixes have a loyal following. 

“They come looking for us.  They come with their list, their supplies, their labels and they know what kind they like.”

Allstars Dips will have new products this year and the fair itself has some new additions.

The California letters that used to be out in front of Disney’s California Adventure are now in front of Cal Expo.  And the nightly fireworks shows will be replaced with longer shows on Thursday and Friday nights. 

Seven-hundred-thousand people are expected to attend this year’s fair. 

0711 bm fair nancy koch urban gardening

Bob Moffitt

Sacramento Region Reporter

Bob reports on all things northern California and Nevada. His coverage of police technology, local athletes, and the environment has won a regional Associated Press and several Edward R. Murrow awards.   Read Full Bio 

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