Ansteorran Chili Night
His Grace, Kein MacEwan remembers:
"I lived in the East Kingdom in 1986 and 1987. In 1988, I went to Pennsic and I camped with the people that I knew in the East instead of the Ansteorrans. On Wednesday night I made chili for my household and any guests they might invite. It was about 40 people.
In 1989, I camped with Ansteorra. On Wednesday night, I made chili for the Ansteorran encampment and invited my old Eastern household, the Von Halsterns, to join us. Some other people joined as well. Maybe 75 people.
In 1990, I made chili and we started inviting everyone. My recipe that year was for 150 people.
I made chili every Wednesday night at Pennsic (and at TFYC) until I was King in 1993. By then we were feeding 500. When I was king, William the Bear and Finn Kelly took on the job for me. I think I made chili at least once more between my reigns, but by then the tradition was firmly established. I only made chili once at Gulf Wars. But the tradition was taken up by others and I am very pleased to have started this particular Ansteorran tradition."
Populace Provided Information
Two of my favorite Chili Night stories...both from Pennsic.
1) Many years ago, I was helping with Chili Night, as were many others, under the BFT ("Big F*****g Tent") at Pennsic. I can't remember who was the cook, unfortunately. What I do remember is that they were unable to get crushed or diced tomatoes in the large cans, so they bought peeled whole tomatoes in the large cans. These tomatoes needed a-squishing. Me and a couple others, I BELIEVE one was Sir Syf (Elzasif), were gleefully squishing away. Up walks [[Donnchadh Beag mac Griogair], who, upon seeing the fun that we were having, volunteered to help. Before we could give warning, Donnchadh grabs a tomato, holds it about eye level, and squeezes. SPLATTT! Tomato seeds and pulp all over everyone's faces. "IN THE BUCKET" we say!! Good times.
2) Another, also at Pennsic. This was JUST before the serving opened, but there was a commanders meeting (?) or royal gathering being hosted in camp. Many Royals were there. One, was His Majesty Kurn O'Farrell of Ulster (Trimaris). I was helping ask the Royals and entourage what they might want, and was informed that King Kurn was a vegetarian, who didn't eat beans, so, if we had something, he would like it. I went to Charles the Grey of Mooneschadowe, who was cooking the chili, and asked if he had anything that might work. Charles, who is amazing, made a meat-less, bean-less "chili" concoction with mushrooms and tomatoes and other veggies, which I presented to His Majesty, who was VERY thankful. Me, thinking we had basically worked a miracle, was so proud of us (mostly Charles). Then, upon clean-up, I disposed of a mostly full bowl of "chili" under a chair where this meeting had happened. I have been told since that Kurn doesn't like mushrooms. You win some, you lose some. :D