On its first year, my cousin Yogi, who exhibits his sheep at the Iowa State Fair, was not busy on the Thursday morning of the contest. I asked if he’d like to come along with me and observe the judging. He agreed, so we headed over to the Food Building. While we watched the contest, I asked the supervisor what happens to the entries after the judges have finished tasting them. She replied, “They get thrown away.” Yogi and I were both feeling a bit hungry, and as farmers, we wanted to do our part in curbing food waste in the United States. As the contest progressed, Yogi and I ate whatever the judges hadn’t. The judging concluded, and everyone prepared to hear the results. When first place was announced, Yogi and I looked at each other and agreed that, yes, it had been the most delicious. The supervisor came over and asked where the remainder of the first prize entry was, as it is customary for the winning entry to be displayed with a blue ribbon for the remainder of the fair. Yogi and I were forced to sheepishly admit that we had eaten all of it, not wanting such a delicious dish to go to waste! The supervisor was clearly displeased. But we learned our lesson, and at this year’s contest, we made sure to wait until the results were announced before eating the leftovers. Even the first runner-up was delicious! Yum!
You can now find the award-winning Cinnamon Ridge Cheese curds at North Scott Foods in Eldridge, along with Freight House Farmers Market and Cinnamon Ridge Country Cupboard. Happy Thanksgiving!