Officials with the State Fair of Texas announced the finalists for the 13th annual Big Tex Choice Awards Wednesday morning.
The 10 finalists will compete for the titles of Best Taste — now separated into Sweet and Savory categories — and Most Creative at the 2017 State Fair:
- Deep Fried Chicken Noodle Soup on a Stick
by Sherry & Chris Howard (Savory)
Homestyle, perfectly spiced chicken noodle soup is deep fried and served on a stick. Each bite size ball will have an indention for a spoonful of savory broth sauce to complete the harmony of the best chicken noodle soup you’ve ever had, and certainly the first on a stick! Each dish is served with a side of crackers.
- Deep Fried Froot Loops®
by Gracie & Milton Whitley (Sweet)
A classic cereal with a State Fair twist! Sweetened Froot Loops® are folded into whipped marshmallow, dipped in a creamy batter, fried to a golden brown, and then topped with a drizzle of glaze and powdered sugar. Breakfast cereal just got better!
- Fat Smooth
by Tami Nevins-Mayes (Sweet)
Three delicious Belgium mini cream puffs on a skewer are dipped in a Café Du Monde® beignet batter. They are then fried until golden brown, dusted in powdered sugar, and drizzled with a chocolate and caramel sauce. The perfect combination to create bring-you-to-your-knees goodness.
- Fernie’s Fried Texas Sheet Cake
by Winter Family Concessions (Sweet)
Start with a Texas-sized slice of fudgy chocolate brownie cake generously coated in ground cocoa puffs, panko and cinnamon sugar. The coated brownie is fried, giving it an ooey-gooey molten center with a crunch outside. The delicious fresh-from-the-fryer brownie is then glazed with a rich, dark icing made with Dr. Pepper®. The chocolatey glaze soaks into the warm brownie while cascading down the sides. The cake is served with chopped Texas pecans, a dollop of whipped cream and garnished with a fresh strawberry carved to mimic a Lady Bird Johnson rose.
- Funnel Cake Bacon Queso Burger
by Tom Grace & Edna Sutton (Savory)
Begin with two funnel cakes that are fried to a golden crunch (aka "buns"). The first funnel bun is topped with a juicy, freshly-grilled burger patty, a heaping helping of crispy bacon, and gooey queso! It is completed with another funnel bun and generously dusted with powdered sugar.
- Gulf Coast Fish Bowl
by Clint Probst (Sweet)
A whimsical beverage featuring all the flavors of your favorite tropical coast, with a kick! Your drinkable aquarium begins with Nerds® candy gravel. Next, the drink is iced and filled with a specially-formulated blue alcoholic punch. Swedish Fish® swim through the ice while a pineapple slice serves as the lid! Each sip brings a stream of crunchy candy and tropical punch up the straw causing a flavor explosion that transports you beachside with every sip!
- Pinot Noir Popcorn
by The Parish Family (Sweet)
It's a blend of Santa Monica Kettle Corn generously dusted with a Pinot Noir burgundy wine powder. The wine-flavored popcorn is paired with savory cheddar cheese flavors to give you the perfect balance of sweet and savory. A perfect pair for a poppin’ snack!
- Surfin’ Turfin’ Tator Boat
by Melissa & David Harrison (Savory)
Succulent lobster meat is marinated in lemon herb butter and partnered with seasoned steak that is grilled to perfection. Both are topped with cheddar and romano cheeses after being stuffed into a piping-hot baked potato with roasted garlic butter melted inside. It is topped off with a single empress cut lobster claw and a side of lemon butter for dipping.
- Texas Fajita Fries
by Nick Bert (Savory)
Tenderly breaded deep-fried beef fajita strips are seasoned with a sriracha spice mix and served in a bread cone. Presented on a bed of Texas toothpicks (fried onions and jalapeños) with a side of pico de gallo and a cool, yet spicy, sour cream guacamole hot sauce. Texas fajita fries can be enjoyed as a sandwich or individually like French fries.
- The Tamale Donut
by Justin Martinez (Savory)
Take a traditional tamale and turn it into a not-so-traditional donut! Our "Classic Pork" Tamale Donut starts with slow-cooked pork carnitas, blended with authentic "made-from-scratch" masa. Each dish is hand-formed into the donut shape and fried until crispy on the outside and soft on the inside. The "Classic Pork" Tamale Donut is finished off with a drizzle of homemade creamy jalapeno salsa.
The 13th annual Big Tex Choice Awards takes place at 2 p.m. Aug. 27 at the Tower Building at Fair Park. Tickets will be available online at BigTex.com for $100.
Officials announced the semifinalists for the awards July 28, which included:
Proceeds from the awards ceremony will be donated to the State Fair of Texas Youth Scholarship Program, which has awarded more than $8.7 million in scholarships to more than 1,800 students in its 24-year history.