Yesterday was cold. A great day for chili. I decided to make Cincinnati Chili. It’s not your typical chili we usually get down here in Texas. It’s definitely different. An old family favorite. Served on spaghetti. Topped with lots of cheddar cheese. And onions. And kidney beans. And oyster crackers if you don’t forget them at the grocery store. Use a fork.
Oh. So. Yummy.
1 quart beef broth or stock
2 pounds lean ground beef
2 medium onions, finely chopped
2 to 3 garlic cloves, minced (or to taste)
1 tablespoon chile powder
1 teaspoon ground allspice
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon red (cayenne) pepper
1 1/2 tbsp unsweetened cocoa or 1/2 ounce grated unsweetened chocolate
1/2 teaspoon salt and coarsely ground black pepper to taste
1 (15-ounce) can tomato sauce
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
2 tablespoons cider vinegar
1 (16-ounce) package uncooked dried spaghetti pasta
1 to 2 (16-ounce) cans of Kidney Beans (or to your taste)
Toppings (see below)
In a large pot over medium-high heat, add beef broth. Crumble raw ground beef in to the broth, breaking up the pieces of meat as it starts to cook; simmer for 30 minutes. Add onion, garlic, chile powder, allspice, cinnamon, cumin, cloves cayenne pepper, cocoa or chocolate, salt, pepper, tomato sauce, Worcestershire sauce, and cider vinegar. Reduce heat to low, and let simmer, uncovered, approximately 2 hours and the sauce thickens. During the last 30 minutes, add the kidney beans.
NOTE: You can make the chili mixture one day ahead of time. When ready to use, remove the fat that has risen to the top; discard fat. Reheat chili mixture over low heat.
Cook spaghetti according to package directions and transfer onto individual serving plates (small oval plates are traditional).
Ladle chili mixture over spaghetti and serve with toppings of your choice. Oyster crackers are served in a separate container on the side.
Shredded Cheddar Cheese
Makes 6 to 8 servings.
Cincinnati chili lovers order their chili by number in the Chili Parlors.. Two, Three, Four, or Five Way. Let your guest create their own final product.
Two-Way Chili: Chili served on spaghetti
Three-Way Chili: Additionally topped with shredded Cheddar cheese
Four-Way Chili: Additionally topped with chopped onions
Five-Way Chili: Additionally topped with kidney beans
Up north, they sell seasoning mix packets, like taco seasoning packets. But I haven’t found one of those packets down here in a long time. I got the above recipe here.