Put your chili to the test

Fun and games until someone beats your best recipe at the first QDHPCA Chili Cook-off

QDHPCA’s Susan MacNeill is banking on people with great recipes ready to go toe-to-toe in a chili cook-off.

Whose got the best darn chill?

Well, Quesnel and District Hospice and Palliative Care Association’s (QDHPCA) first Chili Cook-off is set to settle that argument Aug. 24 right in the heart of the Prospectors Car Club Show and Shine in Quesnel.

Set as a fundraiser for QDHPCA, organizers are hoping to pit mother against son, sister against sister or anyone with a great chill recipe against a field of competitors.

Teams can have up to 10 members so stack your team with great chili chefs, fabulous prep cooks, stirring champs and supporters or keep your team small with just the perfect combination of chili specialists.

The Chili Cook-off is a chance to earn bragging rights plus fabulous prizes and there’s two categories for entries, adult and youth. For those who don’t take their chili too seriously, the Chili Cook-off is a chance to have a lot of fun, show off your cooking skills and help a worthy fundraiser.

However, for those who take their chili dead serious, it can finally be the chance you’ve been looking for to show the world the best chili made with your very own hands.

Gather your co-workers, friends, family and perfect strangers, fill out your entry form and get perfecting the best recipe in the north.

Each team provides all raw ingredients for a minimum two-gallon batch of chill (purchased from a retail outlet) which is not marinaded or seasoned before arrival on site, their cooking source (no electricity available) must be either portable propane or other gas-type stove, all utensils, pots, other equipment needed for preparing and cooking your chili. Prep time is one hour and cooking time is approximately three hours but the chili must be ready for judging promptly at 3 p.m.

Cold food must be stored at 40 degrees and will be checked upon arrival at the event. Chili will be cooked to at least 165 degrees and will be checked by judges. Handwashing is mandatory and clean utensils are as well.

As far as what kind of chili you concoct, that’s up to you as long as your ingredients were purchased commercially (no mystery meat) there’s no limit, veggie, bison, beef, chicken, lamb, beanless – its up to you, remember its your recipe.

Points will be awarded based on appearance, texture and taste.

“It should look like chili (red), taste like chili and be memorable for the judges,” organizer Susan MacNeill said.

The public is invited to also sample the various chili recipes and can purchase a $5 bracelet which provides access to all the competitors entries. There’s also a tasters’ choice prize.

Entries fees are $50 for an adult team and $20 for a youth team. Packages for pick up and drop-off with all the rules are available at the Observer front desk.

MacNeill said they can handle only 20 teams so don’t hesitate, gather your team, put your best chili to the test and sign up for the cooking event of the season.

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