The Chili Cook-Off for Rock Crusher Canyon RV Park was held this afternoon.
There were SIX chefs (one gentleman and five ladies) that prepared their finest chili. THIRTY taste-testers sampled the chilis, submitted their ballots, and sipped their favorite beverages. I found out today that I enjoy Michelob Lager pretty darn well. I’d never had Michelob Lager before. I’ve had regular Michelob, Michelob Light and Michelob Ultra but no “Lager.” Barbie prepared her “Rock Crusher Red” last evening and let it simmer in the slow cooker all night. I woke up in the middle of the night and the aroma permeated the fifth wheel for sure.
The cook-off began at 3:00pm in the clubhouse. I’m certainly glad I remembered to take a Zantac tablet before we went or I’d be paying for it with a severe case of heartburn by now I’m sure. Since I suggested the event at an activities meeting in December, I was co-chair of the event. Before we began sampling I explained the procedures to all in attendance. The chilis were labeled A,B,C,D,E, and F. The testers needed to sample all six and award each a score of 5,4,3,2 or 1, to each chili, with 5 being “great” to 1 being “not good.” See below.
SCORE EACH CHILI 5-4-3-2-1 (5=best)
We had Ritz crackers and saltines to add to the chili if desired. There was iced tea for those who did not bring a beverage with them. None of the cooks conferred but each was different. There was a “Thanksgiving Chili” which included as main ingredients turkey, pumpkin pie mix and butter beans. It was unique for sure and really did taste better than it sounds. Another unique one, “Special Blend White Chili” was made with grilled chicken cut up very fine with black eyed peas as the major ingredients. This chili had NO traditional seasonings you’d find in chili at all, but was very well seasoned, good and so different. Another, “Summer Chili,” was a red chili with the beans and seasonings but made with sausage and not a ground beef. “Chetas Chili” was so named by it’s chef because she said she cheated by using pre-packaged ingredients instead of mixing individual ones. Huh??? That’s what I thought until it was explained to me that she used salsa in jars instead of tomatoes, onions, peppers etc. It was good as well. The final chili was “Grannie’s Chili”, which was as you’d think, a long time family recipe that has been passed around for years. As I said, all were quite good in my opinion-it’s just a matter of personal preference I guess. I looked at the ballots only to unfold them to make it easier for the three ladies that served as the “official” tallyers. Most scores were 4’s and 5’s, with a few 3’s. Only ONE ballot I saw used all 1’s and 2’s on his/her ballot-- my only explanation for it was, that person just doesn’t like chili at all!
The managers donated 3 prizes for upcoming campground food events to be given to the top three favorites: a free breakfast coupon, a free ice cream sundae, and a free strawberry shortcake. They also provided certificates. As co-chairperson, and not knowing the managers made certificates, I also prepared certificates for the Champion and all 5 other participating chefs. Once the ladies had concluded tallying the results they gave them to me to announce:
Third Place – SUMMER CHILI
Second Place – GRANNIE’s CHILI
2012 Rock Crusher Canyon RV Park Chili Cook-Off CHAMPION
ROCK CRUSHER RED
Yes, Barbie’s chili won! Isn’t that a sharp looking certificate I made for my wife! :-)
Well, that’s the big news around here for now.
‘Til next time……