I didn’t always love eating chili. As the story goes, I overdosed on my mom’s chili at the tender age of 3 and got sick. The memory of this made me avoid chili for the next 20 years or so (I still can eat red kidney beans without gagging a little), until I went to culinary school and decided to try making a chili recipe I could actually stomach.
That was 2005, the year of my first chili cookoff, and this year is number five. The cookoff has followed me from Chicago to Australia to California, and has yielded some of the most interesting chilis I have ever tasted (like a kangaroo chili with Vegemite and a Thai chicken chili), and this year was no exception. The big surprise? Really delicious vegetarian chilis that were more than just beans and water!
More chili cookoff food porn after the jump.