LITS annual chili cook-off pleases another large crowd

Tommy Barwick fires up the grill for the hotdogs.

It was perfect fall weather at the 1762 Building as LITS Business and Administration held another successful Chili and Dessert Cook-Off event. Coordinated each year by Linda Richardson, Michelle Crawford, and Kim Comstock, with loads of help from the 1762 staff, this traditional event, in its 16th year, never disappoints.

With over 200 LITS employees in attendance, folks were treated to 18 different chili recipes and 14 different desserts. In addition, the event featured hotdogs, brunswick stew from Fox Brothers BBQ, and sides from Jason’s Deli. There was also a costume contest and, for the first time, karaoke after the meal.

The chili and desserts were blind-judged and scorecards were based on the following five categories:

There were 18 different chilis.

  1. Texture
  2. Flavor
  3. Consistency
  4. Spice and taste
  5. Appearance
This year’s chili winners:
  • First place – Danny Bridges, Beef Port Chili
  • Second place – Amir Ali, Spicy Chili!
  • Third place – Andrew Chin, Spicy Beef Chili
Desert winners:
  • First place – William Boney,  Praline Cheese Cake Bars
  • Second place – Liz Lucabaugh, Chocolate Pecan Pies
  • This place – Beverly Turner, Kiwi cupcakes

Costumes winners (in the biggest costume turnout in the history of the event):

  • First place – HR Group – Rock Band
  • Second place – Sam Politinsky – Pirate
  • Third place – Nayef Smith – Sith Lord

About his first-place dessert, William Boney said, “We took cheesecake and added a little more crunch with a caramel topping. In my opinion this is a different dessert, not a traditional pie, cake or cookie…it’s all three rolled in to one!”

HR Rock Group (from L to R): Nydia Charles Huggins, Rob Renner, Khadijah Muhammad, Carla Ashe-Hutchins.

Danny Bridges is no stranger to first place in the chili contest. In fact, it’s odd when he DOESN’T win.

According to Danny, “I used a mixture of beef short ribs, pork tenderloin and bacon, all ground together. I switch up the meat mixture every year. This year, I took my meat mixture and smoked it for two hours over my pot of chili on my Big Green Egg. When it was done, I let it cool and then crumbled the meat into the chili. The ingredients included tomatoes, variety of peppers, onions, garlic, multiple seasonings and beans.

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