Real or Fake Fair Food Food Network hosts Carla Hall & Nancy Fuller play a Real or Fake quiz to decide which deep-fried and delicious fair foods actually exist, and which ones that, with any luck, will exist one day.

Real or Fake Fair Food

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OPHIRA EISENBERG, HOST:

Our next two guests are all over the Food Network. Carla Hall was a fan-favorite cheftestant (ph) on "Top Chef" and currently hosts Food Network's "Baking Championships." Her upcoming children's book is called "Carla Hall And The Christmas Cornbread" (ph). Nancy Fuller owns the huge food distributor Ginsberg's Foods and hosts the show "Farmhouse Rules" and is a judge on Food Network's "Baking Championships." She's joining us by phone from Knoxville, Tenn.

Carla, Nancy, hello.

CARLA HALL: Hello. Thank you for having us.

NANCY FULLER: Thank you very much for having us.

EISENBERG: Such a pleasure. Carla, tell me about this upcoming children's book that you have called "Carla And The Christmas Cornbread."

HALL: I am so excited about it. When I was a kid, I loved drawing. So I loved drawing cartoons, so I've wanted to do a children's book forever. And this is a book that chronicles my childhood going to my grandmother's house for Sunday suppers. But during this book, we are celebrating Christmas. And I'm cooking with her because I ate Santa's cookies, and then she has to replace the cookies with - what? - Christmas cornbread, which is something that she made up because that's what grandmothers do.

EISENBERG: Is there anything about Christmas cornbread that is specific to the recipe?

HALL: Well, one of the things that we do is make a cinnamon butter...

EISENBERG: Oh.

JONATHAN COULTON, BYLINE: Oh.

HALL: ...That we turn the regular cornbread that she would normally make into something that's holidayish (ph) and just using some of these warming spices. So there's cinnamon and vanilla in the butter.

EISENBERG: Oh, that sounds...

COULTON: That sounds delicious.

EISENBERG: ...So delightful.

FULLER: Sounds delicious.

EISENBERG: And Nancy, one of the things that I've heard you talk about is - people ask you many questions, like, if you could cook for anyone, who would you pick? And you've said Julia Child. My question to you is, what would you make her?

FULLER: Oh, you know, I guess I didn't think about that. I guess I thought that...

(LAUGHTER)

FULLER: ...I guess I kind of just thought that maybe she would cook with me and I'd learn a little something.

COULTON: Oh.

EISENBERG: Oh, yeah.

FULLER: Yeah. So if I were going to cook with her, it would probably be my Chop Chop in the Pot Chicken because it's fail-safe and she would love it. And it's the whole chicken. It's the carrots and the beets, onions, it's celery. It's whatever you want, any kind of vegetable you want...

EISENBERG: Delicious.

FULLER: ...And a little white wine.

(LAUGHTER)

EISENBERG: Ah ha.

HALL: Of course, Nancy. Of course.

COULTON: Sure.

EISENBERG: A secret.

HALL: Nancy's not going to do anything without the wine.

FULLER: Or the tequila or the bourbon.

EISENBERG: Right?

COULTON: Yeah.

EISENBERG: Right. That's on the side, right? That's on the side (laughter).

COULTON: Yeah, on the side.

FULLER: Both.

EISENBERG: On the - both.

FULLER: Both places (laughter).

EISENBERG: OK. So we have a couple great games for you. Carla, Nancy, are you ready to play some games?

FULLER: Sure.

HALL: I love games.

EISENBERG: Great. So this is a - let's do a warmup. We asked our Twitter followers to suggest some ingredients. I'm going to give you a set of those ingredients, and I just ask that the two of you work together to improvise a dish that incorporates them both. So your ingredients are Cruzan Black Strap Rum...

FULLER: Oh.

HALL: Nancy doesn't know what to do with that. OK, what else?

EISENBERG: ...And the other ingredient is...

HALL: OK.

EISENBERG: ...A can of tiny shrimp.

COULTON: (Laughter).

HALL: OK, Nancy. Here we are. You know you going to know what to do with the alcohol...

FULLER: Yep.

HALL: ...But can I start with the shrimp?

EISENBERG: (Laughter) Yes.

FULLER: Well, I'm going to drink the alcohol, and all you have to work with is shrimp.

(LAUGHTER)

EISENBERG: I'm coming over.

COULTON: I'll get the alcohol, and you get a can opener and a fork.

EISENBERG: You know what? I am totally in...

HALL: OK.

EISENBERG: ...For this dinner party. I will be there.

(LAUGHTER)

FULLER: Do we have butter in the refrigerator?

COULTON: Oh, yeah.

HALL: Oh, we always have butter. Come on.

EISENBERG: Absolutely.

FULLER: All right. So we always have butter. The salt's already in the shrimp. Maybe more of a meal is making a pasta and the shrimp and the butter, garlic, parsley, maybe just a little bit of that rum.

(LAUGHTER)

EISENBERG: Amazing. I love it.

HALL: Boom. I like it, Nancy. I'm high-fiving you from afar.

FULLER: OK.

EISENBERG: So now we have a little speed round for you. You're going to take turns playing this game. It's called Real or Fake Fair Food. We're going to give you the name of a state and a food that you can experience at its state fair, and you just tell us if it's something real or something we made up. So, Carla, this is for you. Arkansas - fried Pop-Tarts.

HALL: Real.

EISENBERG: That is real.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

EISENBERG: California - fried White Castle burgers.

HALL: California - fake.

EISENBERG: It is real.

(SOUNDBITE OF BUZZER)

HALL: What?

EISENBERG: Yes.

HALL: In California?

EISENBERG: I know.

HALL: OK.

EISENBERG: Montana - fried cough drops?

HALL: No. Fake.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

EISENBERG: Fake. That is fake.

(LAUGHTER)

EISENBERG: Utah - fried Jell-O.

HALL: Real.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

EISENBERG: That is real. Alaska - fried snow cone.

HALL: Fake.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

EISENBERG: Correct. Minnesota - fried pickles and chocolate.

HALL: Real.

EISENBERG: Totally real.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

EISENBERG: Texas - cotton candy tacos.

HALL: It's Texas. I'm going to say real.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

EISENBERG: You are correct once again.

(LAUGHTER)

EISENBERG: And finally, Indiana - fried Pepsi.

HALL: Fried Pepsi batter - I'm going to - real.

EISENBERG: It is real.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

EISENBERG: And you were definitely on the right track. They replace the water in the batter with Pepsi. The treat has been described as a doughnut hole but with a noticeable Pepsi undertone.

HALL: Yes. I love it. And I think I did very well.

COULTON: Yeah. Nancy, the score to beat is 7. Carla got 7 out of 8, which is pretty impressive. So I'm going to give you eight right now. Are you ready?

FULLER: I'm ready.

COULTON: Here we go. Texas - Kool-Aid pickles.

FULLER: Real.

COULTON: That is real.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

COULTON: California - Python kebabs.

FULLER: Fake.

COULTON: That is real.

(SOUNDBITE OF BUZZER)

FULLER: Yuck.

COULTON: Illinois - alligator on a stick.

FULLER: Yeah.

COULTON: Yeah, that's real.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

COULTON: Iowa - fried butter.

FULLER: Real.

COULTON: Yeah, that's real.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

COULTON: Arkansas - barbecue pulled pork parfait.

FULLER: Real.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

COULTON: Yes, real. Missouri - turkey smoothie.

FULLER: Fake.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

COULTON: (Laughter) Yeah, that's right. That's disgusting. Florida - peanut butter ramen burger.

FULLER: Real.

COULTON: Yeah, that's real.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

COULTON: And lastly, Tennessee - hot beef sundae.

FULLER: Real.

COULTON: Yeah, that is correct.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

FULLER: Who won?

(LAUGHTER)

EISENBERG: Good to know where your head's at.

COULTON: It is a tie. You guys tied at 7 out of 8.

EISENBERG: You tied.

COULTON: Very impressive. Very impressive.

EISENBERG: Wow. And I think we learned that you can fry anything.

COULTON: Yeah.

HALL: 100%.

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