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Calling all tailgate connoisseurs for game day cook-off

PHOENIX — Having the best tailgate or football watch party food might mean more to some than if their team wins.

For those tailgate connoisseurs, they might want to try their hand at the Game Day Chef Challenge.

“The Game Day Chef Challenge is a regional cooking contest that Chevron is putting on,” Andrew Johnston, representative for the challenge, said. “It’s open to residents of Arizona, Oregon, Washington and California.”

Johnston said it’s a pretty simple challenge: Contestants work up their best game day fare, but with a twist.

“What we’re doing is we’re inviting them to take a dish that they prepare for watch parties or for tailgating and put a unique spin on it by going to a Chevron or Texaco location and grabbing any food or non-alcoholic beverage item from the store and incorporating it to their dish,” he said.

Entries for the contests opened on Aug. 1 and Johnston said he’s already seen some interesting and creative ideas.

“There’s a really interesting dish that I would not have thought you could have made with products from Chevron,” he said. “It’s called the Man-Sized Pasta Pie, and it looks like they actually purchased pasta from a Chevron location and combined it with some spinach, mozzarella cheese and made what looks like pasta casserole.”

Johnston said the more creative the better, and the best 15 from Arizona will be narrowed down at the end of the submission period on Sept. 30.

The top five of those 15 will be offered the opportunity to cook their dish in front of judges at the University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Ariz., before an Arizona Cardinals game on Oct. 26.

Those judges will then narrow the field to one final representative who will duke it out for the ultimate tailgate dish against winners from Oregon, Washington and California at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, Calif., for a chance to win $25,000 in Chevron promotional cards, Johnston said.

Johnston said that to enter, contestants must include a Chevron or Texaco receipt showing the ingredient they purchased, an original recipe, a name and photo of the dish.

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