Tidbits: Chili today

  • Article by: AL SICHERMAN , Star Tribune
  • Updated: August 22, 2012 - 2:17 PM

Also: Eggos introducing seasonal flavors.

Chili today

Mr. Tidbit acknowledges that he doesn't keep up with canned-chili developments, but when he noticed Hormel's new Cook-Off series of five or six distinctive kinds of chili, his first instinct was to wonder how many kinds of regular (non Cook-off) Hormel canned chili there already were. He remembered that when he last looked there were lots. That turned out to have been in 1995, and there were 10 kinds. For the record, they were: chili with beans, chili with no beans, hot (spicy) chili with beans, hot chili with no beans, chili with beans and less sodium, chili with no beans and less sodium, turkey chili with beans, turkey chili with no beans, chunky chili with beans, and then-new no-fat vegetarian chili.

Amazingly, the Hormel website lists only the same 10 kinds of regular Hormel canned chili today (but the vegetarian chili now has 1 gram of fat). Looking at his 1995 list reminded Mr. Tidbit that back then Hormel introduced a line called Chili Master, which included things like white-chicken chili. Apparently Chili Master has gone away.

Where is a fan of canned white-chicken and similar chili varieties to turn?

Oh. That fan is to turn to Cook-Off series chili. At one store, Mr. Tidbit saw three kinds: white chicken, chipotle chicken and roasted tomato. Hormel's website lists two more -- Southwest style and Texas brand -- and a photo includes a can labeled "three bean."

Hmm. A check with Hormel confirms that the "new" Cook-Off series is the Chili Master series renamed.

Leggo my season!

Speaking of things that come in many varieties, Mr. Tidbit just noticed what seems to be a new line of Eggo waffles: Eggo Seasons "limited edition," suggesting a revolving line of seasonal flavors. Indeed that's the idea, and the current offering is pumpkin spice. In fact, Mr. Tidbit missed at least one previous Eggo Seasons waffle earlier this year: S'Mores. Much as it pains him to do so, Mr. Tidbit acknowledges that there probably is a season for graham crackers, marshmallows and Hershey bars, but he thinks we're still in it.

AL SICHERMAN

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