AD Main Menu

Photos: Alaska-grown food at the fair

Wasilla restaurant Red Beet features locally-grown ingredients in many of its Alaska State Fair offerings, including salmon, onions, cheese, grains and beets. August 28, 2014
Loren Holmes / Alaska Dispatch News
Shannon Heimerl hands a customer a beet and raspberry smoothie at the Red Beet stand at the Alaska State Fair on Thursday, August 28, 2014. Red Beet features many locally-grown ingredients, including the beets and raspberries.
Loren Holmes / Alaska Dispatch News
Cincinnati resident Ann Russell tries her first Alaskan oyster on Thursday, August 28, 2014 at the Pristine Products booth at the Alaska State Fair in Palmer. She kept the shell as a souvenir.
Loren Holmes / Alaska Dispatch News
Shawna Brown shucks oysters on Thursday, August 28, 2014 at the Pristine Products booth at the Alaska State Fair in Palmer. The booth features oysters from Prince William Sound.
Loren Holmes / Alaska Dispatch News
The Pristine Products booth at the Alaska State Fair in Palmer serves oysters from Prince William Sound. August 28, 2014
Loren Holmes / Alaska Dispatch News
Sisters Cathie Clements, left, and Deborah Denis enjoy a salmon quesadilla on Thursday, August 28, 2014 at the Salmon Express booth at the Alaska State Fair in Palmer. The salmon is wild-caught Alaska salmon.
Loren Holmes / Alaska Dispatch News
Mr. Gyro owner Hugo Jimenez has been serving Alaska grown potatoes for the past two years at his booth at the Alaska State Fair in Palmer. August 28, 2014
Loren Holmes / Alaska Dispatch News
Larry Gibson gets ready to chow down on Seward-caught halibut from the Seafood Alaska booth on Thursday, August 28, 2014 at the Alaska State Fair in Palmer.
Loren Holmes / Alaska Dispatch News
Paddy Wagon co-owner Kevin Coe chops locally-grown potatoes at his booth on Thursday, August 28, 2014 at the Alaska State Fair in Palmer. The Paddy Wagon has been a fixture at the fair since 1970 and serves Alaska grown beef, tomatoes and lettuce in addition to the fries made from local potatoes. “Straight from the ground to the grease,” said Coe.
Loren Holmes / Alaska Dispatch News
Loren Holmes

Just a few of the nearly 70 food vendors at the fair this year build their menus around locally grown, fresh produce despite the Matanuska Valley’s New Deal farm colony roots and a two-year Alaska Grown campaign to get more veggies from nearby fields and other local products into food booths. 

But let’s be honest here.

One of the reasons farm-fresh goodness doesn’t dominate at the fair boils down to the deep-fried competition.

Read more: Alaska groan: Produce from Mat-Su farms is rare at state fair food stands