Sunday, October 10, 2010

Manic Monday Meals ~ Chili Throwdown w/ a Yummy Desert!!!

This weekend was a CRAZY weekend with NOT one but TWO Chili cookoffs!!! For you that have been following me for a while now, may have read a post (that has now been removed) about a chili cookoff that was at my old work. Sum up was someone got upset a chili cookoff was introduced to another potluck we were having. I DIDN'T know who the person was but I was peeved I was dragged into a whole drama, so I blogged out how an email was sent to one of the bosses about it and how upset I was that I who was just asked to make up a flyer for it got my butt reemed for being part of it. Long story short months went by someone for my old office saw the post got very upset since they were the one who sent the email and was hurt I blogged about it. I posted a sorry post etc ... whatever over it!!

So I was SUPER excited to have a chance to make chili with no drama. Cole's School had a carnival and chili/cornbread/dessert cookoff. The rain was POURING so the cookoff didn't go as planned and I don't know who won but I did come back with very little chili left over!
First off we go shopping!!
Here we go, I used a gift card for a coffee and I'm ready to go =D
Award Winning Chili (This was the name they gave it, not being cocky =D)


  • 1 (14.5 ounce) can stewed tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 (6 ounce) can tomato paste
  • 1 carrot, sliced
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 stalks celery, chopped
  • 1/4 cup white wine
  • 1 pinch crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 cup chopped green bell pepper
  • 1/4 cup chopped red bell pepper
  • 1/3 cup bottled steak sauce
  • 5 slices bacon
  • 1 1/2 pounds ground beef
  • 1 (1.25 ounce) package chili seasoning mix
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 (15 ounce) can kidney beans, drained
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley


  1. In a large pot over medium-low heat, combine tomatoes, tomato paste, carrot, onion, celery, wine, pepper flakes, bell peppers and steak sauce.
  2. While tomato mixture is simmering, in a large skillet over medium heat, cook bacon until crisp. Remove to paper towels. Cook beef in bacon drippings until brown; drain. Stir chili seasoning into ground beef.
  3. Stir seasoned beef, cumin and bacon into tomato mixture. Continue to simmer until vegetables are tender and flavors are well blended.
  4. Stir in beans, cilantro and parsley. Heat through and serve.
ALEXIS NOTES: I used Turkey Bacon, Reduce Sodium Kidney Beans, dried cilantro and skipped the parsley. I x4 this recipe (I wasn't sure how many people would be there). I even had to dust the bottle of 2008 wine off, yup I don't seem to drink wine that much anymore. Maybe I need to invite some friends over :).
Then Sunday our church was having a chili cookoff also! Shhh's our secret is the beer :). Rick had the day off so we were running around and I was 25 minutes late to the cookoff so sadly the voting already started. I had so many people come up after to me that if they hadn't already voted they would have voted for me.


  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2 onions, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 3/4 pound beef sirloin, cubed
  • 1 (14.5 ounce) can peeled and diced tomatoes with juice
  • 1 (12 fluid ounce) can or bottle dark beer
  • 1 cup strong brewed coffee
  • 2 (6 ounce) cans tomato paste
  • 1 (14 ounce) can beef broth
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 3 1/2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon cumin seeds
  • 1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 4 (15 ounce) cans kidney beans
  • 4 fresh hot chile peppers, seeded and chopped


  1. Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Cook onions, garlic, ground beef and cubed sirloin in oil for 10 minutes, or until the meat is well browned and the onions are tender.
  2. Mix in the diced tomatoes with juice, dark beer, coffee, tomato paste and beef broth. Season with brown sugar, chili powder, cumin, cocoa powder, oregano, cayenne pepper, coriander and salt. Stir in 2 cans of the beans and hot chile peppers. Reduce heat to low, and simmer for 1 1/2 hours.
  3. Stir in the 2 remaining cans of beans, and simmer for another 30 minutes.
ALEXIS NOTES: I used the tomatoes w/green chilis in it, dad left some beer here last time so perfect time to use it, I LOVE strong coffee so it was use the morning coffee, I 3x the recipe but only put 5 cans of beans. NOW here is the IMPORTANT note to self when cutting hot Chile peppers where GLOVES I washed my hands right away BUT still my hands burned all day long.
Cole's school also had a dessert cookoff so I whipped up a quick one that was SUPER YUMMY!!!
what you need
  • 1 box (18.25 oz.) yellow cake mix
  • 1 box (3.25 oz.) instant vanilla pudding (I used white chocolate)
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 12 oz. choice chips and/or nuts
  • Suggestions:
  • Chocolate Chips or Chunks (White, Milk, Semi or Dark, Butterscotch)
  • M&M’s
  • Mini Kissables (I used)
  • Chopped Candy Bars
  • Chopped, Toasted Nuts
make it
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Combine all ingredients except chips and mix until well blended. Stir in choice of chips and/or nuts.

Spread evenly into lightly greased 9 x 13" pan. (Use foil for easy removal) The mixture will be thick like cookie batter.

Bake for 25 - 30 minutes, or until top is a light, golden brown, and toothpick inserted into center comes out clean. Cool completely in pan and cut into bars, or slice and serve warm (bars will be gooey).

ALEXIS NOTES: I used chocolate chips since I had those on had and yellow cake mix. I think next time I'll try the coconut cake with coconut flakes (Rick's favorite is coconut). These are gooey and yummy!
Phew I'm pooped and that was a lot of cooking and fun times! I think I spent around $70 and sweated and burned my hands ... but it was fun. Hope you have a GREAT Monday =D.


  1. I like using the tomatoes with green chilis too!

    $70? Whoa woman!

  2. You're making me hungry! I haven't made chili for a while; maybe it's time!

  3. Happy Monday! Great cook of I would give you the blue ribbon. Great tips and ways you made the food heathier for you. Love the cake. Have a great day.

  4. I love love love LOVE chili!!! Been craving it but its been kind of warm here again. I'm thinking its time to make it regardless.

    Of course, I've had my mind on CARAMEL lately. Hmmm...wondery why?! LOL

  5. They sound like excellent chilies.
    I am always amazed at the amount of cans I have to open when I make things like chili. Those bars also sound really good. Thanks for sharing.

  6. Sounds like delicious chili!! We've been having more soups that usual this fall and I think making a chili is coming up next ;-)

  7. I never thought about using steak sauce or coffee in chili. Sounds interesting.

  8. Now you should have said "Cheers Tammy" when you showed your!

    Okay, I now want chilli. Your blog is the 2nd one today who has recipes posted. Looks like I am off to the grocery store to pick up some chilli basics! :)

  9. Im definitely going to have to make some of my chili this week!

  10. Love chili! I'm going to enter a chili cookoff this year with my white chicken's amazing! We don't like kidney beans so only use chili beans.


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