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The Fair and Food

The fair is one of my favorite summer activities. Some are better than others for different reasons. The large county fairs in Califonia were bigger than many big State Fairs in some of the states I have lived in. I think how our communities are changing and the weather may have something to do with the lower turnout at all the fairs. Also, we have forgotten that the fair was not just the rides, but a great big party where you could catch up with neighbors or see a new trend for living, or a wholesome way for folks to cut loose and have some fun.

Fair Ferris Wheel
What some think the fair means- rides

Since moving to the midwest from California in 2002, I have tried to participate in the local fair. Not for the possibility of a ribbon, but to be a part of my community. To share with others some of what I love to do and if time permits go and see what others like to do too. Last year with COVID, the whole fair thing was canceled in Kentucky, (I’m sure it was pretty much the same everywhere, not just Kentucky). In 2019 we were in the throes of moving and remodeling; I just didn’t have the energy to find quilts or the fairgrounds in a new county!

Because the move took us to a new county, I was not able to participate in the county fair of the old address. However, I did help to set up that County Fair quilt exhibit. I still belong to the guild that sets it up. It is always fun to see the many quilts from quilters that do not belong to a ‘guild’. Since moving to Kentucky I say every year, I should exhibit a quilt at the State Fair too. This year I made that happen. The Kentucky State Fair is held in Louisville in the second half of August. I entered 3 small pieces and to my surprise, one was sporting a ribbon! It is a postcard and is 4″ x 6″! I think the ribbon has a larger surface area than the entry!

A fair ribbon
Entered a postcard at the State Fair. Won a red ribbon

This has nothing to do with the fair, but when I am not sewing I find myself in the kitchen. Recently I did a little dehydrating. The garden produced lots of tomatoes, onions, and garlic. I just peeled and chopped the garlic, and then dehydrated it. For the onions, I cooked them and then dehydrated them. I will grind them into a powder. Powdered food is super concentrated so a little bit goes a long way. When I process tomatoes I save the tomato skins to dehydrate and then powder. It adds a really big punch of tomato flavor by the tablespoon. We had a fair amount of cherry tomatoes so I also dehydrated many of those, which I also powdered. In addition, I also dried some basil. This summer I canned 2 kinds of pickles, bread and butter and dills too!

Kitchen Goodies canned
There are some unusual foods displayed here. 2 kinds of pickles. Dehydrated Garlic, tomato skins, and a jar with dehydrated cherry tomatoes, 2 tomato powers, basil, and caramelized onions

This summer the garden produced an abundance of different things. Cucumbers, onions, and garlic were the surprising leaders. However, butternut squash will come in at the top this year. We learned while living in South Africa, that the butternut squash is a pumpkin. They did not seem to have a variety of the gourd we call a pumpkin. I liked it every way I had it served! I plan to put some in the dehydrator this year too! Thinking ahead, maybe there is a dehydrated category in the Culinary Division at the fair.

All for now. More later. Beth

2 thoughts on “The Fair and Food

  1. The county fair around here only shows a tiny part of each entry (they get way too many entries and are in a tiny space for ‘craft’ things). I’ve never entered. Congrats on the red ribbon.

    1. I think ours is like that too… I did not have a chance to go… houseguests, but the previous county hung as many as we could, on quilt frames. So you could walk among them too! The red ribbon was a nice surprise!!! Thanks, Beth

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