What does a deep fried Mars bar taste like?
Up north we visited Stonehaven, a nice old seaside town south of Aberdeen. The Carron (formerly The Haven) chippie there claims to be the home of the deep-fried Mars Bar. As it's the first time I've seen one on a menu I had to try one. It's a curious thing, an example of whatever the modern equivalent of tartanry is - something that represents Scotland worldwide but isn't very common when you live here. Londoners recently voted it the 6th best Scottish invention while Scots didn't include it in their top 10 at all.
So, what was it like? Well, it was very well made for a start. The batter was beautifully light and crispy and sealed the chocolate so none of it oozed out. Initially, a very tidy snack. The first bite was magical - a lovely mix of savoury and sweet. The crunch of the batter contrasted nicely with the gooey filling. The Mars bar doesn't melt but the caramel and the Milky Way-style fluffy stuff (technical term?) melt together and go all marshmallowy. Overall, it was surprisingly nice but after a couple of bites I'd had enough. I wouldn't eat a normal Mars bar really, so it's no reflection on its deep fried friend.
The wikipedia entry on Deep fried Mars bars is pretty detailed and outlines local variations like the deep fried Creme Egg from Duns (they've taken that too far). It also says, in a very deadpan way "It is known that the deep-fried Mars Bar was preceded by the deep-fried pizza. It was common practice in Angus to deep fry frozen pizza from as early as 1980." - now deep fried pizza really was a real part of growing up. I remember it being a real treat although when I tried one recently I couldn't handle it. Posting the Mars bar photo on Flickr prompted a discussion of the best thing you've ever had deep fried. My friend John (from Aberdeen) grew up on deep fried jam butties. Something I remember fondly is the cheese sandwiches deep fried in pakora batter from (the now defunct) Murphy's Pakora Bar. They were outstanding. Fried ice cream is big in Mexico. Any advances on that?
Update: Simon James points out a clip of Raymond Blanc trying a deep fried Mars bar on BBC2's The Restaurant. He couldn't eat a whole one either.