Spencer Rabou, age 11, won the junior division of the Chugwater Chili Cook-Off 2016. He will be a 6th grader this fall and lives with his parents Ron and Julie, and his brothers Carson and Mason in Albin, Wyoming. In addition to cooking, Spencer enjoys basketball, gardening, raising chickens, and farming with his dad. Last year was his first time to enter the Chugwater Chili Cook-Off, and he plans on entering again this year.
What inspired you to enter the Chugwater Chili Cook-Off?
I like to cook and wanted to compete. I told my dad I wanted to be in a cooking competition and he suggested the Chugwater Chili Cook-Off.
What do you like about cooking?
I enjoy cooking because it’s fun. I like to experiment with new things and I think that’s cool.
What do you think makes a great bowl of chili?
I think a great bowl of chili needs to be spicy and have a lot of sauce. I like zucchini instead of beans in chili.
What do you think is important in making a bowl of chili?
I think it needs to taste good because nobody wants a bowl of junk. I like to use fresh ingredients because chopping them up makes me feel like I actually made the chili instead of just opening up bags of frozen ingredients and putting them together.
What advice would you give others thinking about entering a chili cook-off?
I would say to have fun and wish them good luck because the Chugwater Chili Cookoff was really fun. I made recipes ahead of time and tried them out on my family. I used lean meat because the fatty meat got too much grease in the pan. Also, make sure you make enough for all the people who want to try your chili. We ran out and we still had a line, so make a lot of it.
What did you enjoy about the Chugwater Chili Cook-Off?
The Chugwater Chili Cook-off had lots of things to do while people were waiting to taste chili. I liked being outside and sharing my chili with others.