For the second year in a row, Kevin's chili won at our friends chili cook off.
Yes, he is the undefeated Kick Ass Chili Cook Off Champion.
Last year, I believe his win was totally warranted.
He looked and looked for weeks to find a particular chili recipe he had seen in a previous issue of Maxim. Scouring old issues of Maxim to find the recipe. Calling his brother Brian (also a Maxim subscriber) to ask him if he remembered seeing the recipe and could find it. Brian couldn't find it either.
He gave up looking for THIS recipe and had resigned to finding another one, and wouldn't you know, just when he had given up looking for the recipe? He stumbled upon it during one of his visits to the "library" during which his Maxim magazines help him pass the time.
The recipe called for tenderloin (or sirloin, I forget - but it was chunks of meat instead of ground something or other). And some special Ancho chiles and sea salt...and a whole lot of other stuff that I have no idea what all of the ingredients were because I don't really cook and don't pay that close attention.
But I do remember that he even did a "test run" of this recipe the weekend before the big cook off so that he could tweak if needed. And tweaking was needed (I think he said he used too much sea salt....whatever, it wasn't perfect and he knew what to do next time to make it perfect.)
Anyway, the point is that last year, he put in some real EFFORT. And in the end, it truly was the best chili there (at least I thought so, and I did indeed vote for it), even though it looked like sludge and people were somewhat wary to try it.
It was spicy - but in a robust flavorful kind of way rather than in a so-damn-hot-it-burns-off-all-your-taste-buds-don't-even-bother-eating-it kind of way.
And we named the chili "Ancho Mama's Chili" to pay homage to the ancho chiles that were used (get it?!? Ain't Yo Mama's Chili. OK, good, glad you get it.)
And he won. A warranted win. And he was proud. And I was proud.
So that brings us to this year. This year, Kev felt no pressure or need to defend his "title". And he really was in no mood to put any kind of effort into it. To the point where I told our hosts that since we won last year's cook off, we would supply the prize for this year's cook off.
So, this little mother trucker throws some stuff in a pot. No recipe. Just some ground meat, a package of McCormick's chili seasoning (is that cheating?), some fresh jalapeno peppers, and lord knows what else. Throws it all in a pot and called it a day.
No searching for the perfect recipe.
No test run.
No top shelf meat.
And it was good. I tasted it before we left for the party. I told him "It's good, hon, really good, but not award winning."
And off we went to the Kick Ass Chili Cook Off, not expecting to win.
The best thing he had going for him was what he named the chili.
Love Me Sexy Chili
If you've never seen the Will Ferrell flick Semi-Pro, then you won't get the reference. If you have seen the movie, then you will agree that it is a freaking hysterical name for a chili...or anything, really. Just click here to enjoy the hilarity of it all.
I figured, well, sex does sell, so maybe his chili will win because of the sex in the name of the chili. But probably not.
I mean, there was some steep competition there...from the "Same Damn Chili" to the "Everything but the Kitchen Sink" chili, to the Louisiana gumbo inspired Mardi Gras chili whose crock pot was decorated with Mardi Gras beads...my point is, if you haven't gotten it already, I fully did not expect Kevin's chili to win.
Primarily, because I ASSUMED that everyone else liked the Mardi Gras chili as much as I did and that they OBVIOUSLY would have voted for it just like I did. Plus, I had picked the winner last year, it only makes sense that I would pick the winner again this year. I mean who wouldn't vote for it?
Well, Kevin, for one.
He voted for his own chili, again, this year. And that's his right as a voter (I asked if it was cheating but everyone assured me that it wasn't).
In the end, Love Me Sexy Chili got the most votes! Followed by a tie for second place by Lisa & Patty (oddly enough, Lisa & Patty both tied for second place last year, too!)
But the Chili Master did it again.
The Love Me Sexy Chili Master, to be exact.
And I was dumbfounded. Stupefied. Could. Not. (still.can.not.quite) Believe that he won.
So I handed over the prize that we had brought...the roll of toilet paper went to Kevin. And the bottle of wine...from CHILE! (intended for the winners) went, instead, to our hosts.
What a fun night!
Look out chili champion hopefuls, Kev might try and come back for a three-peat next year!