Saturday, December 12, 2009

Chili Cook-Off

Earlier this week a friend of mine asked me if I would enter a recipe in a chili cook-off that he was organizing.  I don't know why, but I agreed to do it even though I can't make chili to save my life.  I don't know why it's so difficult for me, but I feel like I can't ever get the recipe right - too many beans, too many tomatoes, noodles, no noodles, too spicy - you get the picture. 

Now that I agreed to enter chili in this cook-off, I had to find a recipe that I could actually make and one that actually tasted good.  I would normally give in and go directly to panic mode, but I was calm, cool, and collected as I remembered that there was a chili recipe in the new cookbook that I recently purchased (lucky me).  If you read my blog, you may remember that I posted last week about Pioneer Woman.  I bought her new cookbook (which is wonderful) earlier in the week and decided to use her Simple, Perfect Chili recipe.  Pioneer Woman has some of the best recipes that don't seem extremely difficult or use funky, not-so-normal ingredients, plus she is really funny and takes great pictures. 

Anyway, I made the chili (yes, the first time I made it was the entry into the cook-off) and my husband and boys really liked it.  Here are the pictures from the evening and to find out how I fared, you will have to read the entire post.  Come on, just humor me a little please :)

This is the finished product ready for Carl to test before we left to deliver the goods.

There were 11 mild entries and 4 spicy entries, plus garlic bread, hot dogs and chips, desserts, and drinks. 

Rachel and Andy love chili and drove all the way over to have some good food.  As you can see, Rachel takes her taste-testing very seriously.  She had a sample from every chili entry. 

I think Andy went more for the spicy samples.  (He did tell me that he liked my recipe the best - 1 vote.)

The taste-testing was done, desserts were gobbled up and it was time to vote.  Just thinking about all of that food makes me want to put on a very stretchy pair of pj's and lounge on the couch.

Carl is thinking really hard about which recipe he should vote for.  Sweetheart, can I just say one thing?  Think really hard about your vote if you don't want to be eating bologna sandwiches for the next year....

Santa even made an appearance at the cook-off.  This is my youngest son, Ryan.  What do you think - was he naughty or nice this year?

Drum roll please...........

You really want to know what place I came in?

For real!?

I came in second out of four spicy entries.  Not bad for making the recipe for the first time.  The boy (yes boy - 7th grade boy) that won this year also won last year with the same recipe.  I do have to say that I had fun and we had a nice evening out visiting with friends.  On the recommendation of my oldest son, I'm planning on entering again so watch out 7th grade boy - I'll be seeing you next year.

And I would like to add a very big thank you to Pioneer Woman!!


Kathryn said...

dang, girl, sitting on the edge of my seat reading this post!!! great writing, great cooking!!! proud of you. can't wait to read more about pioneer woman recipes. lol!!

The Saunders Family said...

I loved living in Ladoga!

Rachel said...

The chili turned out great, and we had a ton of fun! Thanks for the invite! AND I'm in your blog! Stardom at last ;)See you later....

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