HARRISBURG, Pa. — Of all the sights, sounds and smells at the farm show in Harrisburg, nothing attracts visitors like the fresh food. The milkshakes, fried cheese and hot dishes are like no other, packing the mouth-watering flavors of Pennsylvania.
Many items feature the some of the commonwealth's most bountiful crops, including mushrooms. Pennsylvania grows 63% of all mushrooms produced in the United States.
"This year, we have a couple new products. We have our shredded portabella nacho," said Gale Ferranto, member of Mushroom Farmers of Pennsylvania. "It's 100% shredded portabella nacho in a barbeque sauce on a corn chip."
If you're looking for something a little hardier, the Mushroom Farmers of Pennsylvania are serving up blended mushroom steakhouse burgers with cheese.
"60% ground beef, 40% chopped Pennsylvania mushroom with an Alabama sauce that's to die for," Ferranto said.
After a few plates, you might need something to wash it all down. Kreider Farms of Lancaster County has you covered, using an unlikely crop to quench your thirst.
"When the government was going to legalize commercial hemp again, we thought 'well, how can we participate?'" said David Andrews, Kreider Farms vice president of sales.
That's how hemp tea was born. The company bottles four delicious organic flavors including peach lemon dandelion and passionfruit mint.
"We were one of the first companies in the United States to introduce a beverage line made with hemp," Andrews said.
For dessert, it's time to head to the potato stand where the Pennsylvania Co-operative Potato Growers are bagging up the always-popular potato doughnuts by the dozen.
"Our potato doughnuts are made fresh every day. We come in at four in the morning and start making them to try and supply the crowds. That's usually where we have our biggest line," said Nathan Tallman, Pa. Co-operative Potato Growers CEO.
Powdered sugar, cinnamon or plain; these treats are made with Pennsylvania-grown potatoes -- a delicious end to any farm show meal.
Purchases at the Giant Expo Center Food Court help farmers and the many agriculture cooperatives who supply food during farm show week and all year long.