Fried Twinkies a hit in Arkansas

Wednesday, October 16, 2002

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. -- In the South, where some joke that the four basic food groups are barbecued, baked, broiled or fried, state fairs are filled with booths that sell everything from corn on a stick to club-like turkey legs.

For dessert, an odd new treat has emerged: fried Twinkies.

Phil Dickson of Hot Springs has sold about 1,000 of the batter-dipped, deep-fried goodies topped with powdered sugar since the Arkansas State Fair opened Friday.

"It's amazing to me," Dickson said Monday. "The response has just been tremendous."

Each Twinkie, at 160 calories and five grams of fat a pop, is impaled on a stick and frozen until firm, then dipped in a batter similar to that used to fry fish.

Deep frying adds more calories and fat, and the powdered-sugar coating apparently complements the Twinkie's altered state.

"The inside creamy part stays cool, while the outside is warm," said Rhonda Yates, a postal worker spending her vacation helping Dickson with the Twinkie booth.

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