Another year, another chili cook-off. It all started with a girl who had a dream…a dram to find a way she could enjoy chili, the same dish that repulsed her for years. And my, how it has grown. We’ve had as little as four entries and as many as 14, participants that are tried and true Americans, and people from other countries who thought kangaroo and Asian sausages would make a better chili ingredient. This year’s chili blog post won’t be quite as detailed as the previous year’s, but for good reason. I came down with a horrible flu two weeks before the party, and as close to an hour before chili time, I was still chugging the Dayquil and praying for enough strength to make it through the night. Thanks for a couple of bottles of Woodchuck cider and some strong ‘quil, I did survive. But the photos were clearly taken by someone under the influence of cold pills and alcohol(which may solve the mystery of why I thought my cat voted in the cook-off). But then again, I’ve never been one to care about silly things like warnings or drug overdoses. Blame the ‘quil. So here are the highlights: Evan was the first contestant to show up, but his chili got a little excited in the car about the big contest and had a small accident.
I managed to get almost every contestant to tape what went into their chili for my food podcast, Chicken ‘n Waffles. Thanks guys!
The hardest part of the cook-off is waiting for all the chili to arrive. People are dying to eat because they smell all this delicious chili, but you don’t want to start it too soon and risk some quality chili not getting voted for because it came too late. Thankfully, this left plenty of time for photos.
Finally, after 14 pots of chili had arrived, it was time to eat! We set up each chili with a chile pepper #, so people could taste and vote for their top three.
And here are the ONLY two pots of chili I managed to photo in my ‘quil and hard cider-induced stupor:
But really, what is a photo of chili, anyways, if not a pot of brown stuff, huh? It all starts to look the same towards the end…. My contribution to the cook-off was a chipotle chili with ground grass fed beef, free range ground pork, a bit of Mexican chorizo, some butternut squash and lime sour cream.
And here are the winners. In first place vegetarian category (even though his chili burned the CRAP out of my mouth) Mr. Bobby Lincoln!
Second place all around, Spencer Thunderball Thayer and his veggie chili!
And your winner, for the second year, Lynsi Seets and her Thai-inspired chili!
And of course, the all-important post chili consumption cuddle:
Thanks a great night, everyone! Next year, I promise less ‘quil and more photos! And who could forget the post-chili, morning after breakfast of champions? Chili and eggs!