By Jillian Baker
On Nov. 28, the record for the world’s largest funnel cake was broken in Kutztown at the Kutztown Fairgrounds. Celebrity Chef Steve Mallie and others made the funnel cake, which measured 30 inches in diameter.
Mallie and his assistants had the help of Lester Miller, a Kutztown resident who has family ties to the funnel cake business.
“My grandmother introduced the funnel cake in 1950 and they were sold for twenty-five cents apiece at that time,” said Miller.
“It’s great to see all these people here today. I hope we can get this oil hot enough,” Miller said to the crowd who was growing impatient.
Keith Brintzenhoff and Bill Meck told the crowd some Pennsylvania German jokes and shared some stories. The Miller Brothers entertained the crowd with a couple of songs as the oil was reaching its final temperature of 350 degrees.
“We did it and we did it on the first try,” said Chef Mallie. “There were definitely a few speed bumps that we ran into and we just thought our way through it and it actually worked out well. Everything kind of fell into place like a puzzle… We have a great team of people. We do big food, that’s what we do… I feel great now that we did it. I’m just waiting to get a piece of that funnel cake and enjoy the victory right now,” he said to Berks-Mont.
Paul Taylor works as a producer with an L.A. based TV production company, working to hopefully create a new TV show with the celebrity chef to accomplish the goal of beating the former record. Because this event is a test run, Taylor could not reveal the name of the company or the show they are working to produce.
“So Steve is the kind of guy that just loves breaking food records and so we were thinking about what kind of records we wanted to break and then learned the story about the funnel cake and how it started here in this small town in Pennsylvania and we figured ‘hey why not try to break the record for the biggest funnel cake,’” said Paul Taylor, the producer behind the possible new TV show.
“The plan is to go to different locations, where food is based on the location, that has a rich history and for the fun of it, trying to break a record,” Taylor said.
“We’ve spent some time with Lester and met a lot of people to learn the history behind the funnel cake. The funnel cake was first served here in 1950 and we figured what better place to come here and break that record.”
According to Taylor, the previous funnel cake record is twenty inches, which is held by a carnival dealer in California.
The crowd anxiously waited as Mallie, Lester and others poured the batter into a vat of hot oil. With the help of many, they could pour the batter, flip the funnel cake and successfully break the world record.
Audience members were invited to cover the fried dough with powdered sugar. After the production company got their perfect shots of the funnel cake, the audience got a taste.