NOW.... let me tell you the miserable sad story of how we LOST the chili cook-off (can't believe I just said that... falling on my sword here... cue the violins). Here we were, running around, getting all the ingredients going, starting to make the house smell amazing... when we decided to 'make sure we were on the right track' and taste the chili. THANK THE LORD we did that! I went for the first spoonful and just about spit it out! It tasted like sugary baked beans and I hadn't even added any brown sugar yet! So I grabbed James and asked him to taste it to ensure my sanity. HE couldn't handle it! We looked at each other like, "what on earth did we do?!" So, in a desperate attempt save our chili without really knowing what the issue was... I SPOONED OUT EVERY BIT OF MEAT IN THE ENTIRE POT and we started round 2 of the ground beef process. And then we found it... the culprit.. the killer... the death of our chili victory...... baked beans *with brown sugar and bacon*!!!!!! WHAT? WHY ON EARTH WOULDN'T I HAVE NOTICED THAT?! Why would ANYONE want baked beans already made to taste like they were doctored up?? But worse, HOW DID I NOT READ THAT on the label??? I was sick. What a sad sad sad state of affairs. So after realizing that our chili was already well on it's road to being something it was not supposed to be, we decided to just throw things in and keep trying to save it. OBVIOUSLY, it didn't work. We took a very nice pot of SOMETHING to the cook-off but it wasn't really chili and it sure as heck wasn't our winning recipe. And we went home with nothing but our tail between our legs. So my friends, I apologize. I have no victor's trophy to show you and no right to call my chili recipe "win the cook-off chili." HOWEVER, I am vowing NOW that 364 days from now, we WILL be victorious because we WILL master our recipe and make SURE that NO one adds any unwanted brown sugar and bacon via the baked beans!!!! So start wishing us luck! ;) The wonderful couple that DID win last night, Bill and Debi Moore were genius in their execution... they made a beautiful pot of great chili and then TOPPED IT IN CRUMBLED BLEU CHEESE!!!! They DESERVED to win! Anybody that tops anything in bleu cheese needs the automatic blue ribbon! And they got it! So Bill, Debi, here's to you and your kitchen brilliance! May the silver ladle bring you MANY more years of great chili!
Here are our winners and a few other photos of the night...
CHILI COOK-OFF CHAMPIONS!
Jordan explaining the judging cards!
the one on the bottom right is the lemon sorbet to cleanse the palette between each taste ;)
the various different cornbreads... endless.
Jordan accepting her "worst chili, beano award"
Gege accepting her "best cornbread" award
and everyone breaking into the pumpkin babka... YUM! (the recipe will be coming tomorrow!)
SO, all in all it was a FUN successful (for everyone else) night and we are SO
mad at happy for Bill and Debi! ;) Jordan, Brent... THANK YOU for all your beautiful set up and hard work, it was a FABULOUS night! Can't wait 'til next year!