Praise jeebus, spring is approaching and baseball season is just around the corner. (I already have bleacher seats for my kid and me to see the Cubs take on my beloved Pittsburgh Pirates on April 10.) So it seems like now is the time that many ballparks unveil their new food items for the upcoming season, and of course both creativity and enormous sizing are in full play. As Sports Illustrated reports, a lot of these involved hot dogs: The Detroit Tigers’ Coney Dog Egg Roll is filled with hot dogs and chili, topped with mustard and diced onions. The Tigers are also turning a hot dog into a taco with the Al Pastor Dog. Not to be outdone, the Dinger Dog from the Atlanta Braves is a foot-long hot dog, “complete with cheddar cheese and bacon jam wrapped in puff pastry.”
Yes, bigger appears to be better here. But none of these hot-dog-based concoctions can compare to this contribution from the Texas Rangers: a ginormous chicken tender they’re calling the Fowl Pole. It’s a “two-pound tender battered and fried that will be served with waffle fries and ranch and honey mustard dipping sauce.” It even, rightly, has its own carrying case. It will costs $27.50.
Where does a two-pound chicken tender come from? That much is anyone’s guess. Chicken tenders, the kind sold raw in stores, are generally chicken strips made from meat adjacent to the pectoralis major muscle, which we know as chicken breast. It’s hard to imagine there are massive enough commercial chickens—these exempted—that could produce a solid 2-lb. chicken tender. So we’d assume this is really more like a 2-lb. nugget, which could be made of ground and formed meat from the chicken breast, rib, thigh, etc. What are we here for if not to argue nugget semantics?
Okay, even if it’s a 2-lb. nugget, the dish doesn’t make much sense. My son and I will have a hard enough time juggling hot dogs and nachos on our respective laps in the bleachers. How would we be able to balance a two-pound chicken tender? And importantly, why would we want to? How many people are expected to tear into this thing? With deep-fried chicken snacks, at least, less appears to be more, especially at the old ballpark.