Cook-off heats up!

May the best chili win

Created date

May 28th, 2019
Tallgrass Creek staff member Cara Freed offers resident Charlie Kyle a sample of her homemade chili during the community’s annual employee chili cook-off.

Tallgrass Creek staff member Cara Freed offers resident Charlie Kyle a sample of her homemade chili during the community’s annual employee chili cook-off. 

The mouthwatering aroma of simmering, homemade chili fills the air as Tallgrass Creek employees vie for top honors at this year’s chili cook-off. The fragrant and fierce competition takes place in the Cottonwood Room where ten staff members stand behind crock pots of their signature chili. 

Residents and noncompeting staff members vote for their favorite after a generous taste of each chili. 

“We have quite a few fun events here, and this is one of my favorites,” says community member Jean Croy. “It’s always interesting to taste all these different chilies.” 

The recipes are as diverse as the different departments that serve Tallgrass Creek community members. The entries included Ben Ross’ delicious Italian sausage, ground turkey, and stew meat chili; Susi Matthews’ “neighborly chili” full of bacon, beans, slow-baked vegetables, and Guinness beer; and Dallas McGinnis’ meaty chili with peaches, Irish whiskey, and spices. 

Competitors can add toppings such as Fritos, sour cream, shredded cheese, and onions.

After the final tasting, votes are tallied, and Resident Life Manager Jan Magee’s chunky chili with special ingredients of molasses and chocolate, wins first honors. Second place honors go to Sous Chef Ian Zoellers’ pulled pork chili, with Human Resource Director’s Becky Stegmaier’s chorizo and turkey chili coming in third. 

“There are a lot of impressive chili chefs working here, and the competition is stiff,” says Magee. “But a good time and great tastes are always had by all.”  

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