State Fair Potato Salad

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  • 3 1/2 pounds red-skinned potatoes, peeled, cut into 3/4-inch pieces
  • 1/4 cup juices from jar of sweet pickles
  • 4 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 3 hard-boiled eggs, peeled, chopped
  • 1/2 cup chopped red onion
  • 1/2 cup chopped sweet pickles

Recipe Preparation

  • Cook potatoes in large pot of boiling salted water until just tender, about 10 minutes. Drain; transfer to large bowl. Drizzle pickle juices over potatoes and toss gently. Cool to room temperature.

  • Whisk mayonnaise, buttermilk, mustard, sugar, and pepper in medium bowl to blend. Pour over potatoes. Add eggs, onion, celery, and pickles and toss gently to blend. Season to taste with salt. DO AHEAD Can be made 8 hours ahead. Chill. Bring to room temperature before serving.

Recipe by Michael McLaughlin,Reviews Section

Blue Ribbon USA: Prizewinning Recipes from State and County Fairs Hardcover – Illustrated, May 10, 2007

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Raspberry lattice pie Maple creme brulee Red 'n' orange summer potato salad Carmel cashew fruit salad

Jeffrey Doyle-Horney of Stoughton beat out 30 other entrants to win the first Kenmore Family Favorite Fruit Pies competition at the fair with this recipe tribute to his grandma. The win earned him $8,000-plus in prizes, including a $5,000 kitchen appliance makeover and a trip to the Food Network's New York City Wine & Food Festival. Judges for the open-to-the-public event held the first Sunday of the fair were chef Michael Feker of Il Mito restaurant, Kenmore executive chef Kari Karch and veteran State Fair judge Kristy Williams.

Grandmother Lucy's Raspberry Lattice Pie Makes 8 servings

While dough chills, make filling. In a large bowl, combine raspberries, sugar, flour, cinnamon and butter (in small dots). Let mixture sit 30 minutes.

When ready to bake, preheat oven to 350 degrees.

On a lightly floured surface, roll out one portion of dough and fit into 9-inch pie pan. Line with wax paper and pie weights and bake in preheated oven 25 minutes. Remove from oven, remove wax paper and weights and set crust aside to cool.

Roll out other portion of dough into an oval shape and cut into ½-inch strips (about 18 strips) using a scalloped pastry cutter.

Add filling to prebaked bottom crust. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

Weave the cut pastry into a lattice top by first laying half the strips about ¼ inch apart on top of the pie. To easily weave the remaining strips, fold back every other strip of the bottom layer, then lay a strip down at a diagonal angle. Place the folded strips back over the strip just laid, and fold back the opposite bottom layer strips. Lay another strip down parallel to the first, place the folded strips back in place and repeat until the pie is covered.

Cover pastry strips with eggwash and sprinkle with clear sanding sugar. Trim edges of piecrust as needed. Bake in preheated oven 10 minutes, then reduce temperature to 350 degrees and bake another 35 minutes. Remove from heat and cool before cutting and serving.

Note: We found frozen black raspberries at Brennan's Market in Brookfield. One package yielded 3 cups of berries.


Combine 1½ cups flour with sugar and salt in food processor. Process in butter and lard 15 seconds. Pulse in remaining cup of flour until you have a mealy consistency.

Transfer all to a large bowl. Add cold water. Knead together quickly until well blended. Divide dough into two disc-shaped portions and refrigerate &mdash wrapped in plastic &mdash 1 hour.

Dawn Zastrow of Franklin took first place and won $150 in the Superstar Potato Salad contest, sponsored by the Wisconsin Potato Growers Auxiliary, for this colorful salad featuring roasted red-skinned and sweet potatoes.

A judge remarked that this was the best potato salad she had ever eaten, while adding that she's not a potato salad fan.

What to eat at the State Fair of Texas? Try ⟎lebrity' foods, or oddballs like cotton candy burrito, fried potato salad

7:02 PM on Sep 23, 2019 CDT

You'd better bring a big appetite to the State Fair of Texas.

Visitors to this delicious event will find 256 concession stands throughout Fair Park — which is both impressive and intimidating for those who arrive with stomachs growling. What to eat? And where?

Here's the trick: Use the Big Tex Choice Awards winners as edible Cliff's Notes. These three winning foods were picked by a panel of judges as some of the most delicious and ambitious new dishes at the fair. They're celebrities. Fried-food royalty. Don't miss 'em:

Big Red Chicken Bread is worth a try not only because of its clever name but also because it's an inventive play on chicken and waffles. The dish from brothers Brent and Juan Reaves (who operate Smokey John's Bar-B-Que near Love Field Airport in Dallas) make a doughnut spiked with Big Red soda, then top it with a piece of fried chicken. It was judges' favorite sweet dish this year, but it's more of a main course than a dessert. Take a photo before you take a bite: Each piece of chicken comes wearing a cute pair of sunglasses. The dish costs 17 coupons, or $8.50.

Ruth's Stuffed Fried Taco Cone was judges' favorite savory dish. It's made by concessionaire Ruth Hauntz in conjunction with the Reaves brothers. The taco cone is designed as a walk-and-eat dish and is made with barbacoa, black beans and cilantro-lime rice inside a fried taco shell. It costs 18 coupons, or $9.

Fla'Mango Tango was crowned "most creative." It's a simple dessert of mango wrapped in fried pastry dough. Take concessionaire Denise Garza-De La Cruz's advice and dip the fried mango into the strawberry-mango sorbet. It's a crunchy, cold, satisfying bite, especially in warmer weather. It's the priciest item on this list, at 25 coupons, or $12.50.

Longtime fair favorites will still be sold at concession stands around Fair Park, too. Suggestions include a corny dog from Fletcher's, smoked bologna from Little Bob's Bar-B-Que, and funnel cakes from concessionaire Wanda Fern Winter, who is in her nineties and still works at the fair. Check out this story about the "4 essential State Fair of Texas foods."

Of course, the State Fair of Texas is stocked with other new items. More than a dozen semi-finalists for the Big Tex Choice Awards will be for sale inside Fair Park. Some of the more surprising recipes include:

a Champagne JELL-O shot spiked with slices of jalapeño

a glass of wine-based whiskey mixed with egg whites, lemon juice, maple syrup and beer, dressed with a fried pickle, onion ring and jalapeño popper — all called the Fry Rub & Rye

Iowa State Fair Recipes

A happy little boy gets ready to devour this yummy Caramel Pecan Roll.

Cheryl Slocum, Country Living Food Editor, arrived at the fair with a sweet mission: to find the best all-American apple pie. Seeking the perfect alchemy of fruity filling and flaky crust, she and fellow judges awarded the blue ribbon to Christine Montalvo, of West Des Moines. "The apples were tender, not mushy," says Cheryl, "And little cutouts of dough decorated the crust." Montalvo remembers: "While my ribs were smoking, I tackled pie and a conference call." The ribs also won a blue ribbon.

A chef sporting a quirky apron tosses pork chops onto the grill.

These potato chips covered in cheese and sprinkled with peppers spice up the festivities. Another twist on potato chips &mdash potato chip cookies.

Creative Arts Cookbook

Each year, the State Fair of Texas ribbon-winning recipes are shared in a one-of-a-kind cookbook. Recipes that have either made it through generations or perhaps a newly inspired dish, this selection of history cannot be found anywhere else. Purchase your winning recipes cookbook today or enjoy the ones we’ve selected below.

By Phillip Morales | May 18, 2021

Wisconsin State Fair winning recipes, from cake to bread to cookies

Our 2018 collection of winning State Fair recipes concludes with recipes for a “futuristic” cookie, a Black Forest cherry dessert and a blueberry version of the Moscow mule cocktail.

Enjoy trying all 12 tested recipes below.

Catherine Price of Big Bend won a blue ribbon for this multilayered cherry dessert, a variation of the classic Black Forest torte, in the Thyme for Door County’s Signature Dessert competition. She won a gift basket from the Wisconsin Cherry Growers valued at $50.

Black Forest Trifle


  • 6 eggs, separated
  • ½ cup plus 3 tablespoons sugar (divided)
  • 1 ½ teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup flour, sifted
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • Powdered sugar for dusting

Cherry mixtures:

  • 4 cups sweetened Door County Cherries with juice (divided, thawed if frozen)
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • ¼ cup kirsch

Kirsch pudding:

  • 1 cup sugar
  • ¼ cup cornstarch
  • ¾ teaspoon salt
  • 2 ½ cups whole milk
  • ¾ cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 2 tablespoons kirsch
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Chocolate-kirsch whipped cream:

  • 1 ½ cups heavy whipping cream
  • ¼ cup powdered sugar
  • ¼ scant cup kirsch, or to taste
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 tablespoons Dutch-process cocoa powder, sifted

For garnish:

Make ladyfingers: Position two racks in the center of oven and preheat to 350 degrees. Line two baking sheet with parchment paper.

In bowl of a stand mixer, beat egg yolks, ½ cup sugar and vanilla on medium-high speed until mixture doubles in volume. Very gently fold flour into the yolk mixture with a rubber spatula. Batter will be very thick.

In clean stand mixer bowl, with clean beater, whisk egg whites and salt on medium speed until soft peaks form. Gradually add remaining 3 tablespoons sugar whisk until soft peaks form again. Gradually and gently fold beaten whites into yolk mixture until just incorporated.

When ready, pipe about 4-by-2-inch fingers onto each of the prepared baking sheets, leaving at least 2 inches between portions of dough. Dust generously with powdered sugar. Batter will be on the thin side and will spread slightly.

Bake in preheated oven until very slightly browned around the edges, 10 to 12 minutes. Let ladyfingers cool on baking sheet 1 to 2 minutes. While they are still warm, transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. You will get about 36 ladyfingers. You will not need to use them all extras can be frozen. The recipe also can be cut in half.

Make cherry mixtures.

For cherries with syrup: Place 1 cup cherries in a medium saucepan with ¼ cup cherry juice and ¼ cup sugar. Bring to a boil and cook until mixture begins to thicken. Do not overcook. Cherries will remain whole. The consistency should be looser than a regular preserve for easy spreading over ladyfingers.

For marinated cherries: Place remaining cherries and juice in a bowl and add the ¼ cup kirsch. Cover, place in the refrigerator and let soak about 30 minutes. Drain the cherries before using, but retain the juice to drizzle over the ladyfingers. You may not need to use all the juice

Make kirsch pudding: In a medium saucepan, combine sugar, cornstarch and salt. Add milk and cream and whisk to combine. Add egg, whisk again, and place saucepan over medium-high heat, whisking constantly. Once mixture begins to thicken and bubbles begin popping on the surface, turn heat to medium and whisk vigorously 45 seconds. Remove pan from heat. Add kirsch, butter and vanilla and whisk until they are incorporated. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until completely cool.

Make chocolate-kirsch whipped cream: In bowl of a stand mixer, pour in the cream. Whip on medium speed until just thickened. Add powdered sugar, kirsch, vanilla and cocoa powder and, with mixer on medium-high speed, whip cream until it holds stiff peaks that stand upright when the whisk is raised.

Assemble cake: For the first layer, using a small offset spatula or back of a spoon, spread more than half of the pudding on the bottom of an 8-inch trifle pan that is at least 4 inches tall. Cover as much of the pudding as possible with a layer of ladyfingers. You may have to cut some of them to fit. Spread all the cherries with syrup over the ladyfingers.

For the second layer: Add half of the remaining pudding, a layer of ladyfingers, half the marinated cherries, then drizzle a light sprinkling of some of the remaining juice from the marinated cherries over the mixture.

For the third layer: Add remaining pudding, another layer of ladyfingers, remaining marinated cherries and a light sprinkling of some of the remaining juice.

Finally, spread top of trifle with the whipped cream and then generously top with shaved chocolate. Gently cover pan with plastic wrap. Refrigerate 24 hours before serving.

Blueberry simple syrup lends a unique flavor to this version of the Moscow mule. (Photo: Kate Fons)

This year’s fair cocktail competition asked for a Milwaukee version of the Moscow mule. Here is the winning version, from Ashley Glembin of Brookfield. She won a $150 gift card from The Packing House restaurant.

Blueberry Milwaukee Moscow Mule

Blueberry simple syrup:

For the cocktail:

  • 2 ounces Wisconsin vodka
  • 2 ounces blueberry simple syrup
  • 8 ounces ginger beer
  • Juice of ½ lime

For the rim: ½ teaspoon grated fresh ginger mixed with 2 tablespoons sugar

For garnish: fresh blueberries, raspberries and lime slices

Make simple syrup: Combine blueberries, sugar and water in a saucepan. Bring to a boil and let boil 8 minutes. Strain syrup and let cool completely.

Make cocktail mixture: In a cocktail shaker, combine vodka, simple syrup, ginger beer and lime juice.

Rub the remaining lime half around the rims of two mule mugs. Dip rims into ginger-sugar mixture.

Divide cocktail mixture between the mugs, over ice. Garnish with blueberries, raspberries and a lime slice.

Molasses-Coconut-Butterscotch Cookies feature two kinds of baking chips. (Photo: Cathy Jakicic)

Linda Gottlieb of Port Washington answered the call for a “futuristic” molasses cookie with this recipe featuring two flavors of baking chips, coconut and spices.

Molasses-Coconut-Butterscotch Cookies

  • ¾ cup solid vegetable shortening
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • ½ cup molasses
  • 2 ¼ cups flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon ground cloves
  • ½ teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1 teaspoon coconut extract
  • 1 cup shredded coconut
  • 1 cup cinnamon baking chips, chilled
  • 1 cup butterscotch chips, chilled
  • Cinnamon sugar for rolling
  • ¼ cup butterscotch chips
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil
  • 3 to 4 tablespoons powdered sugar
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons toasted coconut

Make cookies: In bowl, thoroughly mix shortening, brown sugar, egg and molasses. Add flour, baking soda, salt and spices. Add coconut extract and mix thoroughly. Stir in coconut and both chilled chips. Cover and refrigerate at least 1 hour.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Shape dough into medium-size balls (1 inch or so in diameter). Roll in cinnamon sugar and place on ungreased baking sheet. Bake in preheated oven 10 to 12 minutes or until just set. Do not overbake. Remove from oven, let sit 2 minutes and then remove from baking sheet. Cool on rack.

Make the drizzle: Melt butterscotch chips in microwave with coconut oil. Add enough powdered sugar to make a drizzling consistency. (Do not mix chips with water or milk, as the drizzle will “seize up.”) Drizzle on cookies and sprinkle with toasted coconut.

Kind of Corny Green Bean Salad earned its creator a $100 cash prize. (Photo: Joanne Kempinger Demski)

Beth Campbell of Belleville won a $100 cash prize from Wisconsin Farm Bureau Foundation for this salad recipe. It took first in the Fun-Fair-Fetti Bean Salad Celebration class.

Kind of Corny Green Bean Salad

  • 1 ½ tablespoons lime juice
  • ½ teaspoon lime zest
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • 4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • Pinch of kosher salt
  • Pinch of black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 2 ears sweet corn, shucked, kernels cut off (about 1 ½ cups)
  • 1 red bell pepper, cut into small squares
  • 1 orange bell pepper, cut into small squares
  • 1 jalapeño pepper, finely minced
  • ½ cup chopped jicama
  • 4 green onions, finely sliced, white and green parts kept separate (divided)
  • 4 ounces yellow beans, ends trimmed, cut into 1-inch lengths
  • 4 ounces green beans, ends trimmed, cut into 1-inch lengths
  • 4 ounces radishes (about 4 large), cut into bite-size pieces

In a medium bowl, combine lime juice and zest and honey. Whisking constantly, slowly drizzle in the olive oil. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Bring a medium pot of salted water to a boil.

Meanwhile, heat vegetable oil in a large nonstick or cast-iron skillet over high heat until shimmering. Add corn, shake once to distribute and cook without moving until darkly charred on one side, about 3 minutes. Toss and flip the corn and repeat until the corn is covered in dark spots, about 8 minutes total. Add bell peppers, jalapeño, jicama and whites of green onion. Cook, tossing frequently, until softened, about 2 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Transfer to a large bowl and let cool a few minutes.

When water has come to a boil, add yellow and green beans and cook just until tender-crisp, about 3 minutes. Drain beans and run under cold running water until cool. Add beans to corn mixture in bowl. Add radishes and dressing and toss to combine thoroughly. Season to taste with more salt and pepper, as needed. Garnish with green onion greens. Serve at room temperature.

Coffee Break Cookies feature coffee in both the cookie dough and the frosting. (Photo: Kate Fons)

These coffee-flavored cookies took first in the Thyme for a Coffee Cookie Break class. Barbara Zagrodnik of Greenfield won a Berres Brothers Coffee gift basket valued at over $100.

Coffee Break Cookies

  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 ounce (2 tablespoons) cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 large egg
  • 3 cups flour
  • 3 tablespoons ground coffee
  • 1 ½ teaspoons baking power
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 2 ½ cups powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 teaspoons finely ground Irish cream coffee (see note) plus additional for sprinkling

Make cookies: In bowl of stand mixer, beat butter, sugar and cream cheese on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. In a small bowl, combine vanilla and egg. Add to butter mixture and beat on low speed until combined.

In another bowl, stir together the flour, coffee, baking powder and salt. With mixer on low speed, gradually add dry ingredients to butter mixture, mixing until soft dough has formed.

Place a rectangular sheet of parchment on a clean surface. Pat the dough out into a rectangular shape. Cover with another sheet of parchment and roll out dough to ½-inch thickness. Remove top sheet and transfer dough to a baking sheet. Refrigerate covered overnight.

When ready to bake, preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line two baking sheets with parchment.

Cut out dough with a 2-inch round cookie or biscuit cutter. Transfer cutouts to baking sheets.

Bake in preheated oven 15 to 20 minutes. Cookies will be soft when taken out of oven. Hold cookies on baking sheets 10 minutes and then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely before frosting.

Make frosting: Using whisk attachment of a stand mixer, whip the butter on medium-high speed 5 minutes, stopping once to scrape side of bowl. Reduce mixer speed to low and add powdered sugar a little at a time. Once all powdered sugar has been added, increase speed to medium-high and whip until fluffy, about 1 to 2 minutes. Add vanilla and the 2 tablespoons coffee and continue to mix until completely incorporated.

Frost cookies and sprinkle additional coffee over frosting.

Notes: Berres Brothers makes an Irish cream coffee. Tester got two dozen cookies but then refrigerated the dough scraps for 30 minutes and rerolled them for an extra dozen. There was enough frosting for the extra cookies.

Oats and nuts, dried fruits and chocolate-covered dried cherries all go into this maple syrup-sweetened granola. (Photo: Nancy Stohs)

Lois J. Trongard of Pewaukee took first in the maple syrup granola class with this fruity-nutty recipe, winning a $50 maple syrup gift basket.

Healthy Maple Granola

  • 4 cups old-fashioned rolled oats (see note)
  • 1 ½ cups raw nuts and/or seeds (see note)
  • 1 teaspoon fine-grain sea salt (or ¾ teaspoon standard table salt)
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • ½ cup melted coconut oil
  • ½ cup maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2/3 cup dried fruit, chopped if large (see note)
  • 1 cup chocolate-covered dried cherries
  • ½ cup coconut flakes (optional)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a half-sheet pan with parchment.

In a large mixing bowl, combine oats, nuts, salt, cinnamon and cayenne. Stir thoroughly to combine.

Stir in oil, maple syrup and vanilla. Turn mixture out onto prepared pan and, using a large spoon, spread into an even layer.

Bake in preheated oven 22 to 26 minutes, stirring halfway through. Granola should be turning lightly golden (keep an eye on it). The granola will crisp up as it cools.

Once granola is cool, stir in fruit, chocolate-covered cherries and, if using, coconut.

Store in an airtight container at room temperature 1 to 2 weeks, or keep in the freezer for a longer shelf life.

Notes: For gluten-free granola, use certified gluten-free oats. For nuts/seeds, Trongard used 2 cups pecans and ½ cup pepitas.

For dried fruit, she used an organic blend of cranberries, blueberries, goldenberries and tart cherries. The brand is Patience Fruit Co., and it’s available at some Sendik’s stores, such as the one in Hartland.

Banana Split Muffins bring together all the flavors of the classic dessert. (Photo: Nancy Stohs)

James Napierala of West Allis won a $250 gift certificate to the online Baker’s Catalogue of King Arthur Flour with this banana split muffin recipe. The category was Thyme for Mixing Up Muffin Fun, and it was for kids only.

Banana Split Muffins

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup whole-wheat flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¾ cup packed brown sugar
  • ¼ cup canola oil
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup mashed banana (about 2 ½ medium)
  • ½ cup vanilla yogurt
  • ¼ cup buttermilk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ cup drained crushed pineapple
  • ¼ cup mini chocolate chips plus more for the top
  • 7 maraschino cherries, halved

For muffins: Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line 14 cups of standard-size muffin pans with liners and coat liners with vegetable oil spray.

In a medium bowl, whisk together flours, baking powder, baking soda and salt.

In a large bowl, whisk or beat sugar with oil and eggs until foamy, about 1 minute. Whisk in banana, yogurt, buttermilk and vanilla. Stir in flour mixture until just moistened, then fold in pineapple and the ¼ cup chocolate chips.

Using an ice cream scoop or a spoon, fill muffin cups with batter about three-fourths full (or a little more). Top each with a cherry half and some mini chocolate chips.

Bake in preheated oven 15 to 20 minutes, until muffins are golden and a toothpick inserted into center comes out clean. Remove from oven and cool in pan on rack 10 minutes. Remove muffins from pan and let cool completely.

For icing: Mix powdered sugar and milk until smooth. Spread evenly over tops of muffins and sprinkle with sprinkles.

Wisconsin-Grown Roasted Corn and Potato Salad, with a creamy herb dressing, was a winner at the state fair. (Photo: Nancy Stohs)

Deb Westerhoff of Hayward won $150 cash from the Wisconsin Potato Growers Auxiliary for this winner in the Fun-Fair-Fetti Potato Salad Fun contest.

Wisconsin-Grown Roasted Corn and Potato Salad

  • 1 pound red baby potatoes, halved
  • 1 red bell pepper, cut into large dice
  • ½ head of purple cauliflower (or white), broken into small florets
  • ¼ cup plus 1 tablespoon olive oil (divided)
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 ear of corn in the husk
  • Juice and grated zest of 1 lemon
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 2 tablespoon chopped fresh dill
  • 2 tablespoons chopped flat-leaf parsley
  • ¼ cup sour cream
  • 2 tablespoons mayonnaise
  • ½ medium red onion, diced

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

In a large bowl, toss potato halves, red bell pepper and cauliflower with 1 tablespoon olive oil and salt and pepper to taste. Spread on a parchment-lined baking sheet in a single layer.
Place ear of corn (still in the husk) on a separate baking sheet.

Place the first baking sheet on middle rack of preheated oven and the sheet with the corn on the lower rack. Roast 30 minutes.

Remove corn from oven and continue roasting potatoes, pepper and cauliflower 30 more minutes, or until potatoes are tender. Meanwhile, remove husks from corn and cut kernels of the cob.

In a small mixing bowl, whisk together remaining ¼ cup olive oil, the lemon juice and zest, garlic, mustard, dill, parsley, sour cream and mayo. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Place all the roasted vegetables in a large bowl. Add red onion. Drizzle some of the dressing over vegetables. Toss to combine.

Store leftovers in a covered container in refrigerator.

Oranges and lemons brighten this winner in the citrus quick bread category. (Photo: Kate Fons)

This bread, winner in the citrus quick bread category, was “perfectly mixed,” with “nice presentation” and “beautiful color,” according to the judges, who also praised it for being moist with a “wonderful fresh flavor.” Beverly Boettcher of Muskego took the blue ribbon.

Orange Lemon Citrus Bread

  • 2 cups flour
  • 2 ½ teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 ⅓ cups sugar
  • 1 tablespoon grated lemon peel
  • 1 tablespoon grated orange peel
  • 2 large eggs
  • ¼ cup (½ stick) butter, room temperature
  • ¼ cup vegetable oil
  • 1 cup half-and-half cream
  • 1 teaspoon lemon extract
  • 1 teaspoon orange extract
  • 1 can (15 ounces) mandarin oranges, drained

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line an 8 ½-by-4 ½-inch loaf pan with parchment paper.

In a large bowl, combine flour, baking powder and salt.

In a medium bowl, mix sugar, lemon peel, orange peel and eggs until thick. Add butter, oil, half-and-half and lemon and orange extracts.

Add egg mixture to flour mixture gently and then fold in mandarin oranges.

Bake in preheated oven 50 to 55 minutes. Cool on wire rack 5 minutes.

Meanwhile, combine marmalade and lemon peel in small microwaveable bowl. Microwave on high 15 seconds.

Remove bread from pan to wire rack. Spread marmalade mixture evenly over the top.

Cool completely before serving.

Corned Beef and Cabbage Savory Pancakes are topped with sesame seeds and green onions. (Photo: Joanne Kempinger Demski)

Beth Campbell of Belleville won first place in a category for any recipe using cabbage with this savory pancake featuring corned beef.

Corned Beef and Cabbage Savory Pancakes

  • 1 small head green cabbage
  • 1 medium carrot
  • 3 green onions
  • 1 cup finely sliced and diced cooked corned beef (about ½ pound)
  • 2 extra-large eggs
  • ½ cup water
  • 1 ½ tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
  • ¾ to 1 cup flour
  • Vegetable oil for frying
  • ¼ cup mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons sriracha or to taste
  • ½ tablespoon sesame seeds
  • 2 green onions, sliced

Remove any wilted leaves from outside of cabbage and discard.

Cut cabbage into quarters and remove core. Thinly slice or shred half the cabbage or until you have 4 to 5 cups.
Peel carrot and shred using a large-hole grater. Slice the 3 green onions, then slice and dice corned beef to measure 1 cup.

In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, water, soy sauce and sesame oil until smooth. Begin whisking in the flour, ¼ cup at a time, until it forms a thick, smooth batter (about ¾ cup to start if first pancake is too loose, add more).

Add cabbage, carrot, green onions and corned beef and stir until vegetables are mixed and everything is evenly coated with batter.

Heat ½ to 1 tablespoon oil in a nonstick or cast-iron skillet over medium heat. Once hot, add ¾ cup vegetable-batter mixture. Press it down into the hot skillet to form a circle about 6 inches in diameter and ½ inch thick. Place a cover on the skillet to hold in the steam, which will help the cabbage soften as it cooks. Cook until golden brown on the bottom, 3 to 5 minutes, then — using an extra-wide spatula — flip and cook until golden brown on the second side.

Pile the cooked pancakes on a plate and cover with foil to keep them warm until ready to eat. Add more oil to skillet as needed.

For a bit of kick, mix together mayo and sriracha in a small bowl. Drizzle over the pancakes just before serving, followed by a sprinkle of sesame seeds and sliced green onions.

Robin Cake features mashed bananas plus sweetened tart cherries and hazelnuts for Wisconsin flair. (Photo: Nancy Stohs)

“The South has Hummingbird Cake, a classic that makes good use of ripe bananas,” wrote Clare Berquist of Mequon when submitting this recipe to the Wisconsin State Fair. “I felt as if Wisconsin needed an equivalent, a cake named after our state bird, the robin, that features Wisconsin produce, sour cherries and hazelnuts. This dense, rich and flavorful cake is decorated in a rustic ‘Up North’ style.”

The cake won a blue ribbon for Berquist in the First “Thyme” Cake Entry category.

The three-layer Robin Cake is a cherry lover's delight. (Photo: Nancy Stohs)

Robin Cake

  • 3 cups flour
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 3 large eggs, beaten
  • 1 ½ cups vegetable oil
  • 1 ½ teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 8 ounces chopped red tart cherries, with sugar, undrained (see note)
  • 2 cups mashed ripe bananas (from about 4 to 6 bananas)
  • 1 cup toasted, chopped hazelnuts, plus a few whole hazelnuts for decoration (see instructions)
  • 1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese, room temperature
  • ½ cup (1 stick) butter, room temperature
  • 1 package (16 ounces) powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

To make cake, preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Toast hazelnuts in preheated oven 3 to 5 minutes. Remove from oven leave oven on.

In a large bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, salt, baking soda and cinnamon.

Add eggs and oil, stirring just until dry ingredients are moistened. Stir in vanilla, cherries, bananas and the toasted chopped hazelnuts.

Divide batter evenly among three well-greased and floured 9-inch round cake pans.

Bake in preheated oven 25 to 30 minutes, until a wooden toothpick comes out clean.

Cool on wire racks 10 minutes. Remove from pans to wire racks and let cool completely, about 1 hour.

Make frosting: Using electric mixer, beat cream cheese and butter on medium-low speed until smooth. Gradually add powdered sugar, beating at low speed until blended after each addition.

Stir in vanilla. Increase speed to medium-high and beat until fluffy, 1 to 2 minutes.

Assemble cake: Place one cake layer on a serving platter, spread top with 1 cup frosting. Top with second layer and spread with 1 cup frosting. Top with third layer and spread remaining frosting over top of cake. Arrange hazelnuts on top of cake.

Note: Door County cherries with sugar are sold in 1-pound tubs at Sendik’s and may be available at other stores. For this recipe, use half the cherries and half the juice in the tub.

Chai Ginger Cookies are spiced with cinnamon, ginger, cloves and black pepper. (Photo: Nancy Stohs)

Beverly Boettcher of Muskego took second place in the Chai-Ginger Inspired Cookie category at State Fair. The judges said it would have been a clear first-place winner had the cookies been more uniform in size.

Chai Ginger Cookies

  • 2 ¼ cups flour
  • 2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • ¾ cup (1 ½ sticks) butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tablespoon orange juice
  • ¼ cup molasses
  • 1 teaspoon orange extract
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar

In a bowl, sift together dry ingredients (flour, ginger, baking soda, cinnamon, cloves, cardamom, salt and pepper).

In another bowl, cream butter and brown sugar. Add egg and beat until fully incorporated. Add orange juice, molasses and orange extract until combined. Add dry ingredients in small batches until combined.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Take about 2 tablespoons of dough and roll into balls. Then dip into granulated sugar and slightly flatten.

State Fair Potato Salad - Recipes

These recipes scored the blue ribbon at their local state fair competition.

Bright lights, fried food, and the faint sound of trumpets carrying a chipper tune are what we fondly remember of the local state fairs of our childhood. But with all the crowds, games, and prizes, has anyone ever thought of where these traditions come from?

State fairs were born because of farming and agriculture they were the result of farmers looking to improve agricultural society by gathering together and discussing tips for farming, demonstrating livestock, and coming up with plans for bountiful harvests. Slowly, these exhibitions became competitions between the farmers, and the meetings grew far more social. Eventually, a tradition was born, and state fairs across the country began.

Competitions ranging from the largest-grown pumpkin to the best-arranged flowers have been gracing fairs for decades, and now cooking has become a popular addition. Showcasing everything from the best apple pies to SPAM donuts, home cooks all around the country enter to compete at their local state fairs, and it’s all for an extremely high honor — a blue ribbon.

"People of all ages and generations compete and showcase at the fair, and have for centuries," explains Cyndi Harles of The Blue Ribbon Group, which coordinates recipe contest programs with top fairs throughout the country on behalf of beloved, popular brands. "The first competitions we organized were cake, cookie, and bread contests in the 1980s and 1990s.

Thousands of hopefuls flock to flex their skills at annual fairs, and participating is fairly easy.

"Participants pre-register with their state fair or regional fair and check out their general and special contests (in what’s sometimes called a premium book)," Harles says. "Most often, you prepare your entry at home and deliver it to the fair for judging, following the guidelines. The contests are generally in culinary, creative arts, and home/hobby type buildings. Winning first place could mean anything from a coveted blue ribbon to national awards and prizes."

So, to find a recipe good enough to "wow" an entire state, we ventured across America with the help of The Blue Ribbon Group to bring you some of the best and tastiest fair fare in the country. From California to North Carolina, these blue ribbon recipes have wowed their local state fairs, so let them wow you, too.

Salaryman Potato Salad

1 1/2 pounds russet potatoes, peeled and cut into half-inch dice

1 Persian cucumber or 1/3 hothouse cucumber

1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard

2 teaspoons distilled white vinegar, plus more to taste as needed

2 ajitama eggs, halved (recipe follows)

Place the diced potatoes into a pot of salted cold water, set over medium heat and bring to a boil. Cook until tender — not al dente, but not quite mashed potatoes. Drain and let cool.

While the potatoes are boiling, slice the cucumbers no thicker than your favorite burger pickle. Season to taste with salt and set aside in the refrigerator.

Cut off the green parts of two of the scallions, and slice them into long ovals on the diagonal. Set them aside for garnish. Cut the rest — white and green parts — into O shapes.

Make the dressing: In a small bowl, whisk together the mayonnaise, the Dijon mustard, the Hondashi, the garlic and the vinegar. Set aside.

Place the drained potatoes in mixing bowl. Use a tea towel to squeeze the excess water out of the chilled cucumbers, then add them to the bowl. Add the O-shaped scallions and about 3/4 cup of the dressing, and fold together until the ingredients are well combined. Do not overmix or the potatoes may become gluey or overly starchy. Taste and correct seasoning, adding salt and/or vinegar as necessary, along with additional mayonnaise, if you like. Combine gently again. Refrigerate at least an hour before serving to give the flavors time to marry.

Divide the potato salad among four small plates (or two larger ones), top each with half an ajitama (or two halves), scatter the diagonal sliced scallion greens on top and serve.

Makes 2 to 4 servings, “depending on how much you love potato salad,” Holt says.

Source: Justin Holt, chef-owner of Salaryman

Sausage & Potato Salad

1 package Premio Sweet Italian Sausage
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
2 pounds new red potatoes,quatered
1 large onion, diced
1 cup mayonaise
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons black pepper
4 cloves fresh garlic, crushed

  • Always cook pork sausage to a minimum internal temperature of 160° F using a meat thermometer.
  • Always cook chicken sausage to a minimum internal temperature of 165° F using a meat thermometer.

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How to make Sausage & Potato Salad:

1. Heat a non stick grill pan on medium-high heat. Cut Premio Sausage into 3 inch pieces. Salt and pepper them and cook until cooked through, about 40 minutes set aside.

2. Boil potatoes in salted water drain well.

3. Add the onion, mayonaise, salt, pepper and garlic mix well until blended. Add the sausage mix it in well and serve.