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Aug 23, 2010 06:13 PM

Big E 2010 -- Fair Food Highlights

As Labor Day quickly approaches, my thoughts start turning towards the junk-food highlight of my year: the Big E in West Springfield, MA. For those of you not familiar with the event, the Big E is a combined state fair for the five New England states. In addition to the farm and craft displays, the midway, and the Mardi Gras parade, the Big E features dozens and dozens of food vendors selling from carts, trucks, and from inside each state's pavilion. I'll post below my list of foods I'm looking forward to, but I'm interested to hear what other people's fair favorites are, as well as what new finds people are discovering this year.

The list of State House vendors is at and the list of outside vendors is at but it seems incomplete (many vendors say on their own sites that they will be there, but aren't listed yet).

My list:
Chocolate Covered Bacon (CT)
)Stuffed Quahog (RI)
Salmon on a Stick (ME)
Pumpkin Rice Pudding (Down Home Pudding, near gate 9)
Apple Crisp w/ ice cream or cheddar cheese (VT)
Gorgonzola cheese fries (MIA in 2009 but on New England Ave near the Young Bldg in 2008)
Lobster roll (ME)
Pierogies (Millie's Pierogies)
Finnish pancakes (MA - Finn Cakes)
Fried pickles (Dr. Vegetable)
Fried Oreos (Piche's Beignets)
Del’s (frozen) Lemonade (RI - Del's Lemonade)
Big Éclair (New England Center)
Maple milk (VT or Farm Center)
Ravioli (RI - Venda Ravioli)
Cabot's Big E exclusive extra-sharp cheddar (VT)
Kettle corn (MA or NH)

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  1. If you are looking for something to skip, pass on the chocolate covered bacon. The company that sells it is a vendor at my office once or twice a month and I bought some last week.
    Their chocolate is just not good. I was really excited for the flavor combo and the chocolate quality really ruined it for me.

    My must haves are:
    Clam Cakes(RI)
    Buffalo French Fries and Fried Jalapenos (vendor across from Midway)
    Chicken Souvlaki

    1. Any deep fried butter available? Big hit at the Texas State Fair.

      1. The last time I checked there were SIX New England States and all of them are represented at the Big E.

        1 Reply
        1. re: jcanino

          Correct. I don't know how I screwed that one up.

        2. I'm not even going this year again. The food just isn't that good and not worth waiting in line a long time for. I had the eclair a few years back and it wasn't that good.

          1 Reply
          1. re: javaandjazz

            Please tell all you friends and family too! If I wait 5 less minutes in 12 lines I can get an extra hour of eating in!!!! =P

          2. actually the best food I have had in the past was the cuban trailer near the entrance/exit. We did takeout from there and ate it when we got home.

            3 Replies
            1. re: javaandjazz

              I'll have to remember the Cuban trailer, J&J. I'm assuming you mean the entrance by gate 9. What kind of things do they have there? This year the alpaca show is on during the middle of the week, (Tue, Wed, Thu), so that will make it nicer for us to attend -- less crowds. It would be nice to try something different.

              1. re: junescook

                It was basic spanish food, roast pork, rice and beans, yucca, plantains, etc. It was good.

                1. re: javaandjazz

                  I think I'm going to follow your lead and grab some on the way out. Sounds good and different.