Sunday, January 22, 2012

Chili, you will not defeat me!

Hi everyone...sorry for falling off the face of the earth...again!  Seems like life has picked up quite a bit since I last wrote, leaving little time for anything else.  But fortunately it has picked up with lots of fun-filled things so I can't complain.  Weekends in the mountains, visits back home, the holidays...all good stuff.  I have even been doing a lot of cooking, but it has been quick stuff to get me through the week rather than the elaborate recipes I like to follow.

Right now, however, my apartment feels like a steamy yoga studio due to a pot of chili I am making for  a cooking challenge at work tomorrow!  If you remember, I have won the last two challenges - breakfast burritos and muffins - now it's time for a chili 'cookoff' ('s me and two other people, but whatever).  However, I have to say, I'm not feeling overly confident.  I have been cooking this stupid thing all day in a crock pot and it looks more like a soup than a chili.  I personally like a really thick chili with lots of beans and far this isn't it.  In a scramble to pull it off I have drained some of the liquid (didn't work), added flour (hasn't worked yet), added corn starch (hasn't worked yet) and my last resort has been to take it out of the crock pot and simmer it in a regular pot with the lid off.  Hopefully most of the liquid will reduce and thicken this way.  Hopefully.  The only thing on my side at this point is that the chili has beer in it.  What isn't better without beer??  I hope the 'judges' (as in me and the two other participants), feel the same way!

But to prove that I CAN make something worth eating, I have included some pictures from a great dinner that I made for my best taste-tester, Rebecca, a couple of months back.  I owed her BIG TIME for helping me move (and just being an awesome person in general) so I made something like a 4 course meal.  Plus, when her and I get together we make a pretty big deal out of the food we eat....and usually down a couple of bottles of wine in the process :)

On the menu for this night was...
Chicken Rolatini with Zucchini (from Rebecca's garden) and mozarella
Parmesan Risotto (this has definitely become a favorite)
Asparagus with Balsamic and Cherry Tomatoes
Homemade Snickerdoodle Cookies  (Kora especially enjoyed these...)

Well, I literally have heat exhaustion from this chili, but I think it is coming together.  Now I think I will make a loaf of banana bread....

Til next time!

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