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'Chili Bombs' At Wiener and Still Champion

This week, Foodie Finds treks to Evanston, where one local hot dog shop sells chili bombs, balls of chili deep-fried in homemade cornbread and served with cheese. Order them off the 'secret menu.'

Take a handful of Cincinnati-style chili, tuck it into a fat wad of homemade cornbread dough, deep-fry the cornbread-chili ball and serve it with cheese sauce. That’s how you make a Chili Bomb. 

Offered on the “secret menu” at Wiener and Still Champion in Evanston, the Chili Bombs are just one example of owner and chef Gus Paschalis’ unusual and gut-busting inventions. He’s also known for making deep-fried gravy, country-fried bacon and a hamburger that’s stuffed with chili and cheese before being dunked in the deep-fryer.

Is there anything Paschalis wouldn’t put in boiling oil?

“There’s not a lot that doesn’t turn out good in a deep fryer,” he admits. 

Paschalis says he got the idea for the Chili Bombs while watching an employee use a soufflé cup to sample some of the Cincinnati-style meat chili he serves on hot dogs. 

“I just looked at it and it was like one of those lightbulbs going off in your head—it kind of looked like cornbread, the brown soufflé cup,” says Paschalis. 

His homemade cornbread batter is famous among regulars, most of whom eat it on “Dippin’ Dogs,” which are hot dogs dipped in cornbread batter, then deep-fried corndog style. 

“Gus is supreme, for his innovativeness and creativeness,” says customer Penny Goldman, who raves about the Dippin’ Dogs as well as the hand-cut French fries. 

An order of four Chili Bombs costs $7.50 and is served with a generous helping of those famous hand-cut French fries, plus a side of Merkt’s cheddar cheese sauce.

When medical marijuana becomes legal in the state of Illinois, the doctors office needs to open next door to this restaurant.
Jennifer Fisher November 30, 2012 at 08:50 PM
I'm not expressing an opinion on medical marijuana, Moe, but your comment made me laugh out loud. Thumbs up!
Thanks Jennifer, I'm here all week! Don't forget to tip your waitstaff, and be sure to try the veal.
Procrustes' Foil December 01, 2012 at 11:33 AM
WOW! I need to get to the Wiener ASAP. I haven't been there for a while. Clearly, I need to recharge my cholesterol count.
J.Lyn December 01, 2012 at 01:32 PM
Wiener and Still Champion has the very best cheddar burger on the planet. It's far better than the Edzo cheddar burger that a lot of people claim to be the best. I've tried both and while I love Edzo's milkshakes and hand cut fries...I would chose Weiner's burger any day! Geeeezzzz this is way too early in the morning to be jonesing for a burger...but you say the words Weiner and Still Champion and that's what can happen!!!

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