Chili Cook-Off Showdown with Home and Garden sponsors


Champaign, Ill. (WCIA)

In honor of National Chili Day we’re putting our Home and Garden Expo sponsors to a chili cook-off. Who will be the Chili Champ?

James Gregory with Lanz Inc is contestant #1. His chili consists of :

Texas spices (secret)
Beans (only because y’all like beans in chili, being from Texas we don’t put beans in our chili 😊)
Other spices

Contestant #2 is Greg Badger, president of Excel Eco Clean.

Easy and Delicious Paleo Turkey Chili
• 2 lbs lean ground turkey
• 2 green bell peppers, chopped
• 1 yellow onion, diced
• 3 stalks celery, chopped
• 3 medium carrots, chopped (quartered, small)
• 2 zucchinis, quartered and chopped

• 2 cloves garlic, diced
• 1 28 oz can diced tomatoes
• 1 4 oz can green chilis (heat to taste)
• 1 tsp coconut oil
• 2 TBSP chili powder (more to taste)

• 2 tsp ground cumin
• 1 tsp salt (Himalayan salt is best)
• ½ tsp garlic powder
• 2 tsp honey

Prepare all veggies and set aside. Next add coconut oil to your pot and turn heat to medium or a little more. Toss in the ground turkey and cook till browned, then add carrots and onions. Cover and cook for 3 to 5 minutes. Next, combine all the rest of the ingredients in the pot and stir.
Cover the pot again and reduce heat to low. Simmer for 20 to 30 minutes. Do not over-cook!! My stove only requires 20 minutes. Cook till veggies are just soft. Remove from heat and let cool for 5 to 10 minutes and serve. Can be topped with chives.

Our final contestant is Jordan Hollern from S-K Exteriors.

Jholl’s Bloody Mary Chili
1 can black beans
1 can red kidney beans
2 cans red chili beans in chili sauce
1 small can of tomato paste (6oz)
Can of diced tomatoes or fresh( optional)

1 medium yellow onion
1 red bell pepper
1 yellow bell pepper
1 small jalapeño
1 fresh tomato
Minced garlic ( I used the squeeze bottle)

1 packet of chili seasoning (I usually mix my own but this is just as simple)
Kosher salt
Black pepper
Olive oil or canola oil
1 bottle of tomato juice or Bloody Mary mix of choice
1 pound 90/10 ground beef

Dice the onion, pepper, jalapeño( seeds removed), and tomato.
Bring about 2 to 3 tablespoons of oil to heat in a pot over medium high heat. Sweat veggies with salt pepper and garlic. I use about 2 table spoons of garlic. Once they begin to caramelize and get a golden remove veggies from pot and set aside add small amount of oil and beef to pot. Brown beef with salt and pepper. Once beef is browned add back in the veggies and mix over medium heat. Add tomato paste and 1/4 of chili seasoning. If the tomato paste is too hard to stir in add a bit of your Bloody Mary mix to thin it. Then add drained black beans, drained kidney beans, both cans of chili beans with sauce and about 1/3 of Bloody Mary mix. Stir to combine and add remaining chili seasoning. Bring to simmer over medium low for at least an hour. Add more Bloody Mary or tomato juice for thinner chili. For best results and flavor let cool and sit in fridge over night before reheating to serve. If you set it over night be ready to add more Bloody Mary mix as it will thicken. Enjoy with crackers and shredded cheddar cheese.
Note, for spicier chili don’t remove seeds from jalapeños and add more, also use a small anoint of crushed red pepper when sweating veggies.

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