Sunday, August 30, 2015

Cincinnati Chili (5-Way)

I learned about this when I was looking for a job way back when.  I'd never heard of doing spaghetti like this until I came across this in an Ohio restaurant.  Wild!!  So different - I like to do this every now and then, just to mix it up!  The list of ingredients is kind of long - but don't let that intimidate you - they are common spices you should have in your pantry.  You're basically making a southern Mediterranean beef and tomato sauce - the taste reminds me of Greek Pastitsio. Think of this as a raid on the "C" section of the spice cabinet!!  

Cincinnati Chili: 3, 4, or 5-Way

You can measure the spices into a small bowl while your beef browns.
(NOTE:  Speed things up!!! See my "Cooked Beef" comment on the "Hints" page!)

1.5 lbs ground beef
2 T oil
2 cloves garlic
2 chopped onions
2 T chili powder
2 T sweet paprika
1.5 t cumin
1 t allspice
1/2 t ground coriander
1.5 t cinnamon
1/2 t cayenne pepper
1/4 t cloves
1 6 oz can tomato sauce
1 can diced tomatoes
1 bay leaf
2 T unsweetened chocolate, chopped up a bit
1 T cider vinegar
2 T Worcestershire sauce
12 oz cooked spaghetti
1 19 oz can red kidney beans
1 pound shredded cheddar cheese

Brown the ground beef in one skillet (drain off any fat).  Soften 1 cup of the chopped onions in oil over med heat in oil in another skillet - about 5 minutes.  Add the garlic and continue to cook 1 min.

Add the chili powder. paprika, cumin, allspice, coriander, cinnamon, cayenne and cloves. Continue to cook 1 min.  Stir in the browned beef and continue to cook.  Add some S/P.

Add the tomato sauce, the tomatoes, bay leaf, 1.5 c water and simmer 30 min.

Add the chocolate, vinegar, and Worcestershire and cook another 15 min.

Meanwhile, cook the spaghetti according to directions.

Heat the beans.

Pull out the bay leaf from the sauce and discard.

Note:  I brown the beef in my pressure cooker, drain, then add everything else except the spaghetti, beans, second cup of chopped onion, and cheese and just pressure cook it for 15 minutes (remember to pull out that bay leaf afterwards.)  The sauce is done by the time the pasta is cooked!

Divide the cooked pasta into serving bowls and top as follows:
3-way:  Spaghetti topped with chili and cheddar cheese
4-way:  Spaghetti topped with chili, then chopped onions, then cheddar cheese OR
             Spaghetti topped with chili, then chopped beans, then cheddar cheese
5-way:  Spaghetti topped with chili, then chopped onions, then beans, then cheddar cheese

If you have kids you're serving, cut back on the cayenne.  Kids' taste buds are much more sensitive than our old over-used ones!!


I usually double the batch on this and freeze portions of it for use on Coney Island hot dogs or later 5-Way meals.   Note:  putting chocolate in sauce like this is very "Mexican" - chocolate and tomatoes are the base for "mole" sauces - very yummy!!

And the winner this week is SaFr - Great detective work!!!

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