Simple, fun, sweet fair food

<p>Marcus Remcharitar makes a funnel cake in the Davis Amusement carnival at the Umatilla County Fair Wednesday.</p>

Funnel cakes are simple and sweet and quite popular at the fair.

Davis Amusement employee Marcus Remcharitar cooks between 90 and 100 funnel cakes on a busy day, he said Wednesday at the Umatilla County Fair.

The 28-year-old from Las Vegas, who wants to go to school to become a chef, said there wasn’t much art to making a funnel cake.

He said he makes the batter by mixing water with powder from a bag of funnel cake mix.

“It’s like making pancakes but just a different mix,” he said.

He pours the batter slowly into hot oil in a deep fryer, he said, moving his hand to create the funnel cake pattern.

“You go in a circle first,” he said as he poured the batter inside a circular pan in the deep fryer. “Then you go sideways and cover in the holes, and the pan makes it look like a cake.”

The batter cooks into a cake quickly, he said as he grabbed the cooking cake with tongs.

“You cook them for a minute and a half, then flip them and cook them for a minute and a half on the other side,” Remcharitar said.

For the best finished product, it is important not to under- or overcook the cakes, he said.

“You want the top part and the bottom part crispy but the center soft,” he said. “It’s kind of like a crispy doughnut. When you bite into it, you get that crispy, mushy taste.”

Once the funnel cake is cooked, Remcharitar recommends topping it with only powdered sugar, but he said they are also offered with strawberries and whipped cream.

“The strawberries and whipped cream, that’s overrated,” he said. “It’s like diabetes waiting to happen.”

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