Football and Chili: A CIU Tradition

November 09, 2010

The annual CIU President's Bowl football games (formerly the North-South Games) is beginning to be upstaged by a new annual pregame activity - the Chili Cook-Off.

This was the fourth annual Chili Cook-Off at CIU. Each year there has been a wide variety of chili's entered in the contest. But this was the first year for two new categories: Classic and Creative. Classic is defined as chili that includes pork or red meat, beans and a tomato-based sauce. To be entered in the "Creative" category, participants must alter or eliminate one or more of the "Classic" ingredients. This year, over 200 people sampled the 12 chili's entered in the contest. CIU's great connoisseur of fine chili's, John Heflick of Alumni Ministries describes the winners:


Dr. Pat Blewett won the "Best Classic Chili" category with his entry, "4 Bean Chili." Dr. Blewett is the associate dean of the Undergraduate School. Visually, this is what a classic chili should look like, thick and chocked full of meat and beans. "4 Bean" was a robust chili, full of flavor and texture, yet without overwhelming heat. Sticking with the classic theme, Dr. Blewett won a basket of cooking utensils, steel coffee mugs and classic chili spices.

Elizabeth Gross, a student, won the "Most Creative Chili" category with her entry, "Chili Toscana." When looking at "Toscana" it was obvious that this came from the same culinary ideology as the famous soup that shares its surname. The first taste that came across the palette was cream and rosemary mixed with the textures of finely chopped steak and beans. But it was the unexpected second wave of heat that surprised the mouth and qualified this as real chili. Elizabeth won a basket of exotic spices and sauces.

Tina Tindale of the Admissions Department won the "Best Overall Chili" category with her entry, "Kentucky White Chili." This was thicker than most white chili's, with a mouthful of flavor in every bite. The spices were balanced and felt in waves, ending with only a hint of heat. The real satisfaction in "Kentucky White" was the well-seasoned, shredded chicken that blended into every bite. The prize for The Best Overall Chili was an I Pod Shuffle.


Oh, and by the way, here are the football scores. The teams now take on the names of former presidents. In the Women's game McQuilkin beat Murray 16-0. And in the men's game, Miller beat Fleece 32-6.

For photos from The President's Bowl visit:

For more fall fun at CIU: