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Vegetarian Chili recipe from Gwyneth Paltrow's, "My Father's Daughter," cookbook.

My husband makes great chili. It’s a little too hot for my taste, but it really is good. But my husband is good at everything. It’s annoying. He does most things better than I do. SO! When I saw a vegetarian chili recipe in my new favorite cookbook, “My Father’s Daughter,” by Gwyneth Paltrow, I thought I would challenge my better half at his own game. And what better time to try out my new-found recipe than for dinner during the Bowl Championship Series (BCS) this year between Louisiana State University and Alabama – Roll Tide Roll, y’all!

LSU and Alabama are fierce rivals. LSU won the only game Alabama lost during the regular season, so this was personal. This was the rematch of The Game of the Century. This was was important. THIS was SEC football at its best, and I wanted to make it special for my husband.

After two hours of cooking, we sat down to eat dinner about 15 minutes before kickoff. It did indeed taste great – for the first 5 seconds. And then it hit. A heat hotter than anything I’ve ever tasted – including my husband’s chili.

What the heck!?

I got up and re-read the recipe: 1 can kidney beans – check! 1 can black beans – check! 1 can whole peeled tomatoes – check! 1 teaspoon chipotle in adobo – Huh? 1 teaspoon? I put in THE WHOLE CAN! Darn it! I was so used to seeing, “1 can,” I guess I just kept in that line of thinking.

I was so mad at myself, and so disappointed that I had wasted so much time and money. AND I was ticked that I had failed at one-upping my husband – again! Meanwhile, my cell phone rang. I had to run downstairs to answer it, and stayed down there talking for a few minutes so not to disturb my husband’s pre-game viewing. When I went back upstairs to remove our dinner for our own safety, I walked in to see my husband sitting back in the chair with a distressed expression on his face.

“What’s the matter?

He said, “I don’t feel well.”

I looked down at his bowl of chili – he had eaten the entire thing.

“You ate the entire bowl! WHY did you do that? I made it way too hot!”

He said, “I ate it because you made it.”

“Well, that is very sweet, but stupid. Don’t ever do that. You’re going to make yourself sick doing that. . . You don’t look good.”

He said, “I don’t feel good.”

And then we heard a noise neither one of us had ever heard before, and it was coming from his stomach. “Awruoooooghbroooom”

I thought, “I’ve killed my husband. Now he won’t be able to watch the rematch of The Game of the Century. What have I done?”

“What can I do? Do you want some more water?”

He said, “No, maybe check to see if we have an anti-acid. That might help.”

Fortunately I found some. He took it and all was quiet for the rest of the game. Although I did keep checking on him: “How are you feeling? Are you ok? How’s your stomach? I’m SO sorry, etc.”

The game was great, too. For us, at least. I have never, EVER seen a football team’s defense stop the other team the way the Crimson Tide stopped LSU. It was a history-making game, for sure. As was my chili concoction. It will always be known as the BCS chili with which I tried to kill my husband. I don’t see my living this down anytime soon, either.

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