A deep fried Twinkie is a relatively recent invention, taking the popular Hostess Twinkie cake, freezing it, dipping it into batter and deep frying it to create a variation on the traditional snack cake. According to the Hostess website, Christopher Sell invented the "fried twinkie" at the ChipShop, his restaurant in Brooklyn, New York. According to CNN, the dish was adapted by Chris Mullen, but invented at a "Brooklyn restaurant." The deep-fried Twinkie was a runaway success after Mullen and his brother started selling it at country fairs in mid-August. "We sold 26,000 Twinkies in 18 days," By 2002, the Arkansas State Fair had introduced the fried Twinkie to great popular acclaim, and the notion spread to other state fairs across the U.S., as well as some establishments that specialize in fried foods.

Although variations exist in the form, the deep fried Twinkie is usually prepared with a fish batter, typically consisting of flour, egg and vinegar. Before dipping, an often wooden or plastic stick is inserted (to allow the consumer to hold it after preparation) through one end and the Twinkie is then frozen overnight to prevent melting while being deep fried. After coating, conventional cooking oil is typically used (although beef, suet, or tallow is sometimes used to give a "meaty" flavor).

It was described by the New York Times in this way: "Something magical occurs when the pastry hits the hot oil. The creamy white vegetable shortening filling liquefies, impregnating the sponge cake with its luscious vanilla flavor. . . The cake itself softens and warms, nearly melting, contrasting with the crisp, deep-fried crust in a buttery and suave way. The piece de resistance, however, is a ruby-hued berry sauce, adding a tart sophistication to all that airy sugary goodness." [1]

An unfried Twinkie has 150 Calories and five grams of fat. The batter and deep frying adds at least another 240 Calories and 28 grams of fat. When asked whether fair customers expressed concern about the health effects of the deep fried Twinkie, Mullens commented that "people at fairs don't tend to eat food that's good for them."

When prepared formally, the deep fried Twinkie is usually topped with powdered sugar and accompanied by a fruit dipping sauce. Raspberry sauce is the most frequently utilized in recipes.

Governor Mike Huckabee of Arkansas has marked the deep-fried Twinkie (which was popularized in his state) as the supreme example of bad eating choices.

Edward Urbanczyk is also a major contributor to the success of the deep-fried Twinkie.

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