Friendly Competition
By • Filed In: Party, Recipes

Apparently our family loves some good old fashioned competition. This past Sunday, we attended a chili cook-off and man did it get intense. There was smack talk and everything. But before we get into the results, lets get into the details. My aunt and uncle were the host and asked us all to bring a pot of our best homemade chili while they provided all the fixings.  Kali, Brian, Jeff, and myself were a team. And they had everything you could possibly think of. Everything from homemade tortilla chips, to onions, to jalapenos, to sour cream. Once we got to their house my aunt took our pot of chili and labeled them with a number using a chalk pen (like these or these).

See those little white cups next to the pots of chili? Those were the tasting cups. They labeled those with the coordinating numbers and when it was time for the tastings we all took one little white cup for each of them. There were nine pots of chili so we each had 9 white cups.

Getting the tasting cups

The chili we submitted

Ballots ready to be counted

Once we tasted all nine, we picked the one we deemed the best and cast our ballot. The ballot bowl was my aunt’s grandfather’s cowboy hat that he wore every single day. How cute is that!? I guess I should mention that my aunt grew up in Texas, you don’t see a ton of regular cowboy hat wearers around these parts.

Once we tasted all of them, we were allowed to get a big ol’ bowl of our favorite and load it up with all the yummy fixings.

My aunt and uncle not only asked us to bring a pot of chili, but a six-pack of beer. Did you guys know that Frank Thomas, the Chicago White Sox legend, created his own beer? Yep, he did, it’s called Big Hurt Beer. Get it? Frank Thomas, the Big Hurt. Nice huh!? So to pay homage to our city love, that’s what we brought. I’m definitely not a beer expert of any kind, but it’s really good. It’s a nice fairly light beer with good flavor. Jeff’s opinion holds more weight than mine, and he loves the stuff.

So are you curious about who won? WE DID! Well technically my aunt did, but since she was the host she didn’t want to take a prize and removed herself from the competition. And we were next in line. So even though we technically got second place, we were moved on up to the first place spot. They even had first, second, and third place prizes. First place was a huuuuge bottle of vodka infused with chili peppers. Bloody marys anyone? Second place was a bottle of hot sauce, and third place was a spatula that said “hot stuff”.

I know y’all (a chili cook-off calls for a southern accent of course) want to see the winning chili looking all pretty, so here y’all go.

And here is a printable version of the short rib chili recipe. It is a fairly thick chili, especially the day after you make it. If you like your chili a bit thinner, add more broth and then adjust your seasonings accordingly.

We hope you enjoy the chili as much as we did!

About the Author

I am a 28 year old Chi-Town city gal living in a cozy condo with my boyfriend, Jeff. Monday through Friday I go by Miss Schmitt, as my main gig is working as a speech-language pathologist at a school in the burbs. Beyond my day job, I adore decorating, finding treasures at flea markets, seeking new adventures in the city, laughing, indulging in anything sweet, and spending time with friends and family (especially my lovely sis, Kali). Read along as I share my hopes, dreams, and outcomes (the good and the bad!).

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