Friday, August 19, 2011

food fun?

Today is the day The Ex opens. The Canadian National Exhibition. A Toronto tradition since 1879. I haven't been going that long, but people around here seem to have long, fond memories of The Ex of old.  There have been many changes and evolutions at this venerable old fairground. The Ex itself is a little underwhelming and I am not a midway fan, but the one unifying memory seems to be the food. Specifically, The Food Building.  The Food Building was the place to go to get all those free samples. Back in the day, the stalls used to be geared towards manufacturers who would provide freebies or cheap samples of their new wares (some of them even cooked!) to entice you to later buy their product at your local supermarket. We would leave there a lot less hungry and arms laden with bags and bags of food and coupons and recipes. The last time I was there it had evolved into a glorified food court of fast food chains, many of which could be found at any mall. Where's the excitement in that?

Of course there is also the carnival food that is new and, erm, exciting. Though every year it seems to become more and more bizarre. And unhealthy. Truly unhealthy. Last year it was fried butter, this year it is the Krispy Kreme donut cheeseburger, coming in at a whopping 1500 calories. Also on offer are such things as deep fried cola, deep fried mac and cheese, deep fried kool ade, deep fried cheese curds, deep fried pop tarts. Noticing a trend here?

And to think I thought Tiny Tom Donuts were a wonderful novelty. And candy floss. All could only be gotten only at The Ex.

Then, today, in Shoppers Drug Mart I found this

Is nothing sacred anymore?

Where's the excitement in that?


  1. I am, I'm sorry to admit, a HUGE fan of cotton candy. But it's not as good out of a tub as it is spun onto a paper cone.

  2. SAW : I rather like candy floss/cotton candy myself, but I have never seen it sold this way before!

  3. I bet it isn't as good this way. I wouldn't buy it anyway. Besides, it's pure sugar.

  4. Nora: yep, spun sugar - yummy! in my day though it was either blue or pink - I don't remember any specific flavour to it.

  5. Ah yes, we call it candy floss. I was never allowed it. My daughter was allowed to have it once (that we knew about)

    Dreadful stuff ;)

  6. At the fair my sisters always bought cotton candy. I bought buttery pop corn. Long after theirs was gone, I was still licking butter off my fingers.

  7. I do love me some freshly spun cotton candy. Tubs just don't cut it!
    ANd I also love Kettle yummy!!

  8. Gilly: we seem to use both cotton candy and candy floss, in fact I have to stop and think which one is more prevalent.

    Gail; the stickiness is a bit of a turn off for me

    SueAnn: I imagine people thought the same about popcorn at one time, that it must be fresh or not at all!

  9. Exposition/Fair/Carnival food is, by definition, VeryVeryBadForYou. Hence it's attraction. It's like daring the gods to strike you dead on the spot. But oh! what a way to go!
    The healthiest food I ever ate at one of those events was boiled peanuts at the Florida state fair. They were horrible . . . tasted like mushy kidney beans mixed with dirt.

  10. All I can ask is: Is nothing sacred?

  11. Most of that weird fried stuff is a result of the Texas State Fair. They have a contest every year and the stuff eventually ends up all over the place. Sorry about that.
    Did you call cotton candy "candy floss?" I've never heard that before.

  12. Deep fried BUTTER?

    That is totally repulsive.

  13. mein gott! We had our own Candy Floss maker which thankfully was broken in the earthquakes (can't remember which one!) but my kids still hover near any stall that sells the stuff at markets. But deep fried butter??


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