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State Fair’s Top New Foods: Fried Carrot Cake And Bacon Margarita

State Fair of Texas
Fernie’s Holy Moly Carrot Cake Roly (pictured) and Smoky Bacon Margarita won top honors at Sunday's Big Tex Choice Awards.";

Five stories that have North Texas talking: the king and queen of State Fair food are crowned; UT-Austin removes the Jefferson Davis statue; more on the Harris County deputy shooting; and more.

The king and queen of State Fair of Texas foods were crowned Sunday. Fernie’s Holy Moly Carrot Cake Roly won best tasting, while Smoky Bacon Margarita won most creative in the annual Big Tex Choice Awards. Christi Erpillo’s dessert includes bread with cinnamon, carrot cake, raisins and carrots. It’s rolled in cream cheese and then covered in panko, graham crackers, cinnamon and nutmeg. The fair trumpets: “Holy moly – this is far from your typical dessert!” (For the record: Erpillo's family also introduced funnel cake to the State Fair back in the day.) Isaac Rousso’s drink infuses bacon into a frozen lime margarita. Then bacon crumbles are thrown on top. The awards are a big deal for fair food vendors – winners are practically guaranteed long lines and strong sales due to all of the publicity. There were eight finalists, from fried lobster to fried alligator. Catch up on the finalists here.

  • A 30-year-old man is to be arraigned Monday in the shooting of a Harris County sheriff’s deputy. Shannon J. Miles, who has been charged with capital murder in the fatal shooting of the uniformed sheriff's deputy, had a lengthy criminal record going back a decade, but never spent more than short stints in jail. Miles, whose criminal record includes convictions for resisting arrest and disorderly conduct with a firearm, is to be arraigned Monday in the shooting of Darren Goforth, a 10-year veteran of the Harris County Sheriff's Office. Miles' arrest Saturday came less than 24 hours after authorities said he ambushed Goforth at a suburban Houston Chevron station. Harris County Sheriff Ron Hickman says the attack was "clearly unprovoked," and there is no evidence that Goforth knew Miles. Hickman says investigators have no information from Miles that would shed light on his motive. The Houston Chronicle has more details. [Associated Press]

  • University of Texas at Austin has removed the Jefferson Davis statue. The Texas Tribune reports: “About 100 students, university staff members and other Austinites gathered to see the relocation of the controversial statue of the Confederate president. Workers wrapped the statue in plastic and cut its bolts loose from its column before lifting it onto a trailer on the back of a truck. UT President Greg Fenves announced during the summer the statue will move to the Dolph Briscoe Center for American History. The decision came after he received recommendations from a task force he assembled on the future of statues of Confederate veterans.” [Texas Tribune]

  • The New York Times profiles Phyllis Randolph Frye of Houston, the nation’s first openly transgender judge. “Nearly four decades before Caitlyn Jenner introduced herself to the world, Phyllis Randolph Frye came out as a transgender woman in a far less glamorous way. No Diane Sawyer, no Vanity Fair,” the Times writes.  “It was the summer of 1976. As Bruce Jenner, 26, was celebrating his decathlon victory at the Montreal Olympics, Phillip Frye, 28, was admitting defeat in suppressing his gender identity. He, becoming she, had already lost a lot: He had been forced to resign from the military for “sexual deviation.” He had been disowned by his parents, divorced by his first wife and separated from his son. He had been dismissed from several engineering jobs.” [The New York Times]

  • Did you miss KXT’s Summer Cut? Relive Saturday’s festival via “KXT has likewise found its level and embraced it, promoting a sizable number of shows, while also overseeing its own concert series (the annual “Barefoot at the Belmont” performances) and Summer Cut, which, for the first time this year, moved from Gexa Energy Pavilion to the South Side Ballroom. The contraction in space made for a more intimate experience — not to mention a far more temperate one; the air conditioning was as much of a featured player as any musician on stage — and arguably the most satisfying festival-going experience yet offered in North Texas this year. Although promoters love putting bands and fans in large outdoor spaces when it’s warm outside, there’s something to be said for being able to focus on the music, and not whether you’re about to sweat to death.” []
Eric Aasen is KERA’s managing editor. He helps lead the station's news department, including radio and digital reporters, producers and newscasters. He also oversees, the station’s news website, and manages the station's digital news projects. He reports and writes stories for the website and contributes pieces to KERA radio. He's discussed breaking news live on various public radio programs, including The Takeaway, Here & Now and Texas Standard, as well as radio and TV programs in New Zealand and the United Kingdom.