At Culturefest in Brighton this year there were 3 eating contests sponsored by Bubba Chino’s. So naturally, I’m there.
Going in, I knew the foods. I didn’t know the format of the contests. Not until sign-up did I find out the format of the contests: first to finish. I really do not like that format – speed eating really is not my thing. I’m a chewer.
First up: whole canned jalapenos. Each contestant had a plate of 12 jalapenos set down in front of them. Canned jalapenos, while hotter overall to me than raw jalapenos, are nice and soft. Not too much chewing involved. On go, I get a pretty good start. Hand speed, key in a contest with whole jalapenos, was good. Toward the end I did flail on one pepper and I did drop one on the ground so I had to pick it up. It ended up being pretty tight but when my jalapenos were gone and the closest competitor had one on his plate, I calmly made sure I got it all down. Just under a minute!
One contest, one win.
Next was green chile cheese fries. About 15 minutes after the jalapenos. This is Bubba Chino’s “thing”. The competitors get a plate piled wide and piled high with fries, cheese, and smothered in green chile. There’s a fork on the plate, but on go I get rid of the fork and go at it with my hands. I’m out in front again, but I’ve got to keep going because it’s close, and fries are my nemesis. The green chile though provided quite a bit of moisture so the fries weren’t dry. But they were HOT. Well, the green chile. I think hotter than the jalapenos from the last round. Coming near the end, the fries were hard to grab on the plate so I pour the remaining stuff on the table and mop everything up that way. I’m always messy. Not Juliet-Lee-cheating-messy, but messy.
Two contests, two wins.
Finally it was the last contest: smothered burritos. Competitors each had in front of them a plate with one burrito. But that one burrito is smothered by cheese and green chile. Much like the fries were. After the first bite it became evident that the burrito had only beans in it. Though very close, I did not pull out the win in this contest. The temperature of the burrito caused me to lose. Or, how I handled the temperature caused me to lose. First, I did the mouth-open-stare-up delay to get cooler air. I also stopped a moment when stuffing it so I could get cooler air. Third, I punctured the tortilla and hit a hot pocket of bean filling, lost grip on the burrito and it fell on the plate. So any of those, or a combination of, made me lose by a bite. Dang it!
Three contests, two wins.
This other guy who also did all 3 contests placed behind me in each so he went 0-3. But I am happy with my finishes because of the format. First to finish is not my thing so I’m OK with each contest.~