Some foods just naturally sound like soul mates to the crockpot, among them chili and chicken. Think of how easy crockpot recipes have made life for all of us. Meals are done while we are away from home and with some of the modern crockpots, the temperature will automatically set to warm when the cooking time is over, keeping the meal ready until you are. The standard round pot has been joined by an oval pot, and there are sizes for small families and large. Some families have more than one crockpot that is used on a regular basis, creating main dishes in one and sides or desserts in the other.
Crockpot recipes continue to grow as the group of crockpot cooks increases. When cooks share ideas, more just seem to blossom. That is why it is so much fun to browse through recipes. You just never know what you are going to see that grabs your interest. Like any recipe, it is wise to follow it exactly the first time to analyze the results, and then adjust it the next time, adding extra ingredients you like. Of course if there is an ingredient you do not care for or causes allergic reactions, look to see if there is an alternative exchange for it or if it can be left out altogether. If it is a finishing ingredient, such as olives, make a portion without the olives for those who either dislike or react adversely to them.
Crockpot Recipes for Chili Cook-offs
Your friends may be surprised to find out that October is National Chili Month, although Congress has not made it official and you cannot take the month off from work and be paid for the holiday. What you can do, however, is celebrate the fall and even Halloween by having October center around chili. As leaves turn brilliant colors and days start to cool down, arrange a colorful event like a crockpot chili cook- off for the neighborhood, your friends, or your church. Just imagine the aroma of chili wafting through the neighborhood or the park!
At a crockpot chili cook-off, everyone brings a ladle and their own crockpot full of cooked chili, with a list of the ingredients so no one accidentally gets a dose of something they cannot eat. Plastic cups and spoons are provided by the host, so everyone can have a sample of what has been made. Sometimes feelings might be hurt if there is an actual vote with just a few categories and you want people to have a good time and want to do it again next year, so have a “Best” category for the number of contestants, such as best sauce, best variety, best beans, best flavor, and so on. Make a ballot sheet that lists each category and make the tags easy to tear out.
After walking around and sampling, guests can vote by tearing off the tabs for the category and dropping their selection in the voting box by each crockpot. Pick two people to tally the votes in each box. The award is given for the most votes for each category. For instance, if Crockpot Chilli has 13 votes for best sauce, 10 for flavor, and 5 for hot-hot-hot, Crockpot Chilli should get the award for best sauce.
Do tally all the votes first, in case there is a tie in the category, but hopefully, there will never be one. If you are printing the awards from your computer, consider making a second set, just in case. The award is the prize, since this is in good fun. Recipes can be shared or kept secret and the nicest part of all is that everyone will enjoy finding out about more recipes for dishes such as crockpot white chicken chili and the different spices that make chili taste so good.