Tuesday, September 8, 2009
First Annual Chili Cook-Off
Labor Day marked our neighborhood's first annual chili cook-off. There was a considerable amount of trash-talking leading up to the event, but yesterday we all finally had to put our chili where our mouths are.The H's entry must have simmered for a good five hours. It teemed with odds and ends from the Sausage King, rang about eight alarms (give or take), and was goooooood. I can say that since I wasn't allowed to be a judge.Here is our neighbor's sister, Martha, explaining the Official CASI Rules & Guidelines to the judges. Yes, we all took this very seriously.There were only three entries total, two of which came from the same family. Oh well. These things have to start somewhere.Each bowl of chili was judged on five criteria: taste, color, aroma, consistency, and aftertaste. You could tell who the judges were by their creased eyebrows, frequent palate cleansing, and general confusion about the scoring system.During the judging, the contestants (Tim, Joy, Devil and the H) sweated it out in the kitchen, where the tension was palpable.Finally, the winner was announced.Can you guess who it was? The husband-and-wife team of Tim and Devil! Well, it would have been tacky for the host to win. Even if he is the only one who shouldn't have been disqualified for using beans. Hey guys, if it was a bean soup cook-off we would have said so. Kidding, kidding. All three chili entries were super tasty as evidenced by the three empty bowls at the end of the day. And I myself am a big lover of beans.For dessert, everyone shared some deliciously fudgy brownies.Our neighbor, Sammi, took home the grand prize for the coolest playground stunts. It was an all-around great event. Although next year we'll probably hold it in the late fall or winter, when hot and hearty chili sounds a litle more appetizing. Live and learn.