I went to the fairgrounds to collect my ribbons yesterday, and received them all as expected. What I wasn't expecting, however, was that they would give me all of my cards, with some of the judges comments on the back of them. Writing on the back of the cards seems to be a judges prerogative, so some of them had comments and some of them didn't. But certainly all of it is good to know for the future.
My blueberry jam was not opened and disqualified because of "poor fill." (um, really? I don't even know what that means.) My apricot jam (which placed 3rd) was marked down as being "too stiff." (I mean haven't we all said at one point or another "gosh this jam is so delicious but it is SO STIFF I nearly broke my knife in half trying to get it out of the jar., I think I broke a tooth!" lol, I think that is hysterical.) In regards to my buttermilk biscuits (which placed 2nd) the judge commented "Tastes a little sweet. Nice color. A little on the big side." I personally think they have the perfect balance of salty and sweet, but to each his own. And having cut them with a standard sized biscuit cutter, size seems a strange thing to be marked down for, especially considering how small and disgusting the first place winner's biscuits looked at the fair (all crumbly, and gray), but you know, whatever. My rolls say "Nicely shaped. Perfectly brown. Very under baked." And having eaten the remainder of that batch myself, the rolls were no where near under baked, so don't even get me started on that one. Perhaps they enjoy a more crusty bread, that's fine. The BOC winning scones say simply "super moist. love the ingredients. perfectly browned." And the rest of the cards are blank.
I would have liked comments on the brownies too (the winning brownies had walnuts in them, which I don't include because of my being allergic to them, and I wonder if this played into mine not placing higher), but I will take what I can get. All of the feedback is good to know for the future. I think I will win next year's biscuits if I (begrudgingly) cut the sugar and the size a bit. And if only I could find a way to loosen up my cement jam. I think I will also be entering the gift basket and table setting competitions next year, just for fun (and because all of the entries this year were very sad looking and no where near award earning, so the playing field seems pretty clear for an easy win). And I will be entering many more items in the future. I will have that grand prize, so help me god, and I don't care how many old ladies I have to trample over to get to it!