What is it that folks love about the Big E? The rides? The attractions? The music? Oh yeah--all of those things! But c'mon. Fess up. What's the real reason people love the Big E and why it attracts over a million visitors a year? You know the answer. It's the food.

This year, for the 2021 Eastern States Exposition, the Big E has unveiled a lot of new delicious eats to go along with all the returning favorites. Trust me, even if I mention just a small sampling of what is being offered, you'll no doubt find something that sounds scrumptious!

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First off, if you've visited the Big E before, then you know that if you can think of a food item to deep-fry, chances are they've already done it. Everyone already knows about the deep-fried Oreos and Snickers bars, but does anyone remember when they deep-fried jelly beans??? I do...

This year in that same category, they're going to have deep-fried tacos! I'm sure that I'll have to try at least one...thousand of those. One of the new food locations at the fair, Emma's, will be offering cookie dough on a stick in five different flavors.

The Big E Bakery will be bringing back the very popular original Cream Puffs and the recently introduced chocolate ganache topped Cream Puffs, but they also have a new flavor for this year's fair. You probably already guessed it. Pumpkin Cream Puffs!

How's this for kinda weird, kinda cool, kinda delicious? The All American Craft Beer Bar and Grill will be serving up, in addition to many other great dishes, a "Bloody Mary" grilled cheese with hickory-smoked bacon and tomato topped with a mayo-based sauce featuring Tabasco, horseradish, and relish. They will also have Buffalo Chicken Meatballs, served with a Ranch dressing.

The New England Craft Pub will be offering a pulled-pork-filled popover and what they're calling a "Taco Bag", with Fritos corn chips, fire-roasted corn salsa, and cheese! Now that sounds dynamite!

And that is just a small sampling of the food being offered at this year's Big E. They will have everything from hot honey chicken bites and a Nashville hot chicken sandwich, to fried cinnamon balls and deep-fried pineapple with coconut sauce. The Meatball Factory has even updated their Dilly Dilly Dog, introduced in 2018.

In case you're unfamiliar, the original Dilly Dilly Dog featured a hollowed-out pickle stuffed with a hot dog, fried in corn-dog batter. This year, you can have the hot dog wrapped in bacon before it goes inside the pickle. Wow!

Do yourself a flavor--I mean, favor, and check it out for yourself. Visit the Big E's website here for more great food items, ticket information, scheduled concerts, and much more.

This year's Big E runs September 17 through October 3 at the Eastern States Exposition Fairgrounds in West Springfield.

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