Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Brand New Season!

Howdy Roos!

September 30th marked the end of the 2011 season so it stands to reason that October 1 was the start of the 2012 right? RIGHT!!

The first area Tolbert cook off was October 8th at the Cedar Hall Bar in Lockhart.  We decided to go with me doing chili and Jon doing BBQ (status quo baby) ..except .....we weren't sure if there would be a BBQ competition due to the huge fires that trashed Bastrop and the current strict burn bans in our area.  Finally, on the seventh, the organizers worked out a deal with the Caldwell county Fire Marshall and after following an extensive, several page list of rules, you could cook BBQ if you so desired.

We didn't.  Jon decided to try his hand at chili (and beans) for the first time and I decided to experiment with my recipe a bit.

Isn't he adorable in a Rivercat Chili tee??

So we BOTH were cooking chili....and since I beat him a few times in BBQ, it makes sense he should have the opportunity to return the favor.

After what seemed like years without any rain and with most of the area reduced to moon rock, mother nature decided to give us a gift.

Hmmmmm could that be Rain??

And wind???

Yup we got poured on BUT we were lucky enough to be under cover of the Bar's patio so we stayed nice and dry for a change.

Dwight Hamilton (Central Texas Tolbert Chili Group god!) stopped by to say Hi.  He asked me if I was going to Terlingua this year.  Ummm No.  Only got 6 points.  Thanks for rubbing salt in the wounds sigh.  He did mention that first in this competition is an automatic qualifier for 2012 Terlingua... Gotta love his optimism!

So we set out to cook and actually had a helper!

This is Eugene. He is our family Elf. Usually he gets into trouble but he worked really hard at being good at the cook off.

So we cooked.  Jon was using my old stove so the fire went out every five minutes...pssstt.... thats why its my OLD stove.  Jon was a fretting ...I was a chilling....good chili cooks itself... thats my story and I am sticking to it!

Beans turn in was at 1 and chili at 2 and don't ask me how but I ended up judging ribs at 3.  Just a little taste... and a lick...nom nom nom.

After everything was turned in and while judging was still going on, I screwed up all my courage, poured some of my chili in a cup and marched all the way over to Dwight's camper.  I told him I trust his opinion and to be brutally honest. And he was. Brutally. Honest.  Ok maybe not so brutal..Dwight is a sweetie pie ...but he did tell me repeatedly TOO MUCH SALT. Ok got it.... too much salt. He thought I would still do well though. 

Fingers crossed!

Time for awards!

Eugene volunteered to hold our tickets.  See I told you he was trying to be good.

They announced the margaritas and the black eyed peas...then onto the beans......

Jon got ninth! of course there were only nine entries but hey... a trophy is a trophy!

They announced ribs and brisket and then finally onto the chili!

Dwight got eighth or ninth.  The gal that just won the Tolbert Ladies State Championship on 10/1 got fourth.  Jon and I were discussing the merits of salt reduction in both our recipes.

I was holding on to at least make final table.....

Dwight dragggggeeeddd out the announcements.  Joking about first points of the season and who gets bragging rights for getting them.

Jon and I discussed the merits of better preparation.

Dwight got to to the winning ticket and felt compelled to announce every single stinking number.... he said it was too important not to....ummmm everyone has the same number except the last four digits and I am starving.

Jon and I discussed the merits of eating then sleeping.

Dwight got to the last two numbers.....5.......7....

Jon and I discussed the merits of... wait a minute.... Jon was jumping up and down screaming ( and I do mean screaming) F%^& Yeah! F%^& Yeah! F%^& Yeah!

I looked at my ticket... Hey wait! That's MY number??? I just won???? What just happened here??

I beat Dwight?

I beat the current Tolbert Ladies State Champion?

I freaking won?

I just qualified for Terlingua 2012?? In the first competition of the season?

As I made my way forward in disbelief, Dwight proclaimed into the mic "All that I just told you about too much salt? Forget it!"


Got a real nice trophy too!

Eugene! Put that trophy down! Can't expect a family Elf to be good ALL th time!

Jon? No he didn't make final table but I don't think his story is over yet ;)
And now friends.... time to introduce a new tag line....

VIVA TERLINGUA BABY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Its been awhile....

Ok so its been a little while since the last post...and I have a lot to cover in this one so I am going to cheat a bit....I promised some history regarding CASI vs Tolbert and here is a link that lays it all out better than I can:

Yup its a long link but worth the click.

Now onto other stuff....

The 2010 - 2011 cook off season ended on 09/30/11.  There's still Terlingua in November but if you didn't qualify by 9/30 you don't get to go this year....

Guess who didn't qualify and isn't going? siiiggghhhhhhhhh.... I did however manage 6 points in 4 competitions so all is good. 

I finished out the year with a sixth, ninth, ninth and final table.  so all is well....and the new season started yesterday and yes I did cook.... I will post pictures tomorrow when I can figure out how to get them off my phone.

Oh did I mention..... I have a recipe!!!!!!!!!!! sorta.....something easy and absolutely perfect for those chilly evenings...... I hear its perfect... I am in Texas so I don't exactly have a chili (see... see what I did??) evening to try it on but I hear warm  food + chilliness = smiles all around.

Awesome Chili Chicken Recipe
So you competed in chili and beans and you have a ton of leftover chili and  beans..... what to do what to do.....

1. Spray your crock pot with a light coating of Pam ...the inside of the crock pot silly..... if you spray the outside it will be too slippery!

2. Trim the fat and ickiness off of about 3lbs boneless skinless chicken breast.  Toss that in the crock pot. The chicken not the trimmings.....

3. Add about a cup of leftover chili (even if it isn't good chili it still works).

4. Add about a cup of the leftover pinto beans. 

5. Cook on low for about 6.5 hours.

6. Serve with pasta or rice or just some nice veggies!

Yummmmmmm and it freezes great so you can use it in tacos or pitas later!

Ok, signing off the 2010 - 2011 year.....

Howdy ROOOOooooooOOoooOooooO!!!!!!!!!!

Psssstttt..... come back tomorrow so I can tell you all about the start of 2011-2012 and Jon's first time cooking chili!