PENDLETON, Ind. —
On a chilly day, the Sons of American Veterans bar in Pendleton turned to a tried-and-true method of warming up: Chili.
The bar held its annual Chili Cook-Off for Scholars on Sunday afternoon. The competition raised about $500 for a scholarship fund for Pendleton Heights High School.
With snow and ice on the ground and frosty winds whipping outside, cooks and tasters stayed warm inside and tried the eight different chili recipes. Ultimately, two cooks tied with a winning formula.
Troy Jones and Galen Fry received the most votes from taste-testers who came to the pub throughout the day to sample the chilies. Jones said his recipe is fairly simple, with deer meat, hamburger and a traditional mix of flavors. Fry's was a little more unique, using potatoes.
"They're all pretty good, and it's going to a good cause," Jones said.
Deer meat was a favorite ingredient of several cooks, including Jim and Barb Clay, who included deer along with Mexican chorizo sausage. Deer offers a hearty taste similar to sausage.
"I'm just glad I didn't burn it," Barb Clay said jokingly. "This is the same recipe we've been using for a few years. We have a lot of good cooks here."
Monty and Dee Reger went with a traditional recipe with a slight twist. They used all meat and no noodles or vegetables, which created a thicker stew. John Kemp used no beans, a little oregano and lots of spice for a hot taste. The cooks said Kemp's was the spiciest.
"It's good on a day like this," he noted.
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