Bowls of steaming chili in June? Sure, why not. The versatile stew (with or without meat) is so popular year-round that 10,000 chili-lovers are expected to attend the Old Town Elk Grove Chili Festival, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday.
Join the merry-makers along Elk Grove Boulevard, from Second Avenue to Derr Street. Line up for chili tastings, chili cook-off, food court, beer garden and wine bar, entertainment, children's activities, arts and crafts, and more. Information: www.oldtownelkgrovefoundation.org.
As for chili itself: Its origins are muddled, but many food historians agree that it did not originate in Mexico and is rarely seen there today. Chili as we know it now likely originated in 1800s San Antonio, Texas. Because of the heat from chili peppers as an ingredient, it was called "the devil's stew."