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La Jolla Scouts Kaiden Marouf and Mitch Coleman cook up first-prize chili at Camporee

Kaiden Malouf and Mitch Coleman
Kaiden Malouf and Mitch Coleman
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“Chef” Mitch Coleman and assistant chef Kaiden Marouf won first prize for their chili at the annual San Diego-Imperial County Boy Scout Spring Camporee March 13-15 on Fiesta Island.

Fifteen troops each sent a pair of Scout chefs to compete in the camp cooking contest. Rules called for each team to be provided with basic chili ingredients, with one “surprise” ingredient supplied by the chefs.

Three volunteers judged the chili based on aroma, presentation, appearance and taste. First, second and third place awards were given out. Chef duos were given the following ingredients, and Coleman’s secret ingredient was 24 ounces of pork chorizo: 2 pounds of ground beef, 1 onion, 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil, 2 cans of kidney beans, 3 cans of diced tomatoes and 1.5 tablespoons of chili powder.

Here is the winning chili recipe: Use the ingredients above, plus: 2 tablespoons chili powder, 1 tablespoon chipotle chili powder, 1 teaspoon cumin, 1 teaspoon salt, 1 teaspoon oregano, 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika, 1 teaspoon garlic powder.

Method: Cook the chorizo in a frying pan. When done, put in stew pot. Save the grease to cook the ground beef. Add the ground beef to the same fry pan you used to cook the chorizo. When done, transfer beef to stew pot.

Save the grease to cook the onions. Dice the onions and cook in the pan that cooked the chorizo and ground beef. When onions become translucent, place in stew pot with the chorizo and ground beef.

Drain the kidney beans and place in the stew pot. Put the tomatoes in the stew pot, with half of their juice. Add the spices. Stir. Bring to a boil. Turn down to simmer and simmer for 45 minutes. Taste and add more spices as needed. Garnish with Fritos, sour cream, shredded cheddar and cilantro