Dinner Favorites

Cincinnati Chili

Good morning and happy Monday!

Now that we are officially into cooler weather here in Vegas (hey, it’s only going to be 70 degrees today), it’s time to break out all of our favorite recipes for chili and soups.

While I have my trusty, foolproof and dependable recipe for chili, I am starting to expand my culinary repertoire as far as variations and regional specialties.

Because I can, that’s why 😉

This particular version caught my eye after watching an episode of “Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives”. It contains spices that I would never have thought to add to a savory dish, namely cinnamon, allspice, nutmeg and cocoa powder.

To say the posse and I were a bit suspicious is an understatement.

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However, it all came together and the flavors melded quite harmoniously. It was something completely different and unique (to us, that is), and while it won’t usurp my #1 chili recipes’ position, it was a worthwhile change of pace and I will definitely be making it again.

One year ago: Honey Wheat Rolls

Cincinnati Chili – adapted from Saveur

2 tbsp. olive oil
5 cloves garlic, finely chopped
2 medium yellow onions, finely chopped
1½ lbs. ground beef
2 tbsp. chili powder
1½ tsp. ground cinnamon
½ tsp. ground allspice
½ tsp. ground cloves
½ tsp. ground cumin
1 tsp. dried oregano
½ tsp. ground nutmeg
1 dried bay leaf
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
2 cups tomato sauce
1 tbsp. unsweetened cocoa powder
¾ lb. dried spaghetti
1 15-oz. can red kidney beans, rinsed under hot water and drained
4 cups finely grated cheddar cheese

Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add garlic and half of the onions and cook, stirring occasionally, until lightly browned, 5–6 minutes. Add beef, chili powder, cinnamon, allspice, cloves, cumin, oregano, nutmeg, bay leaf, and black pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, until well browned, 6–8 minutes. Tilt skillet and spoon out and discard any accumulated fat. Add tomato sauce, cocoa powder, and 1 cup water; bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low and cook, partially covered, until somewhat thick, about 25 minutes.

Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over medium-high heat. Add spaghetti and cook, stirring occasionally, until tender, 8–10 minutes; drain. Put beans into a small pot and cook over medium heat, covered, stirring occasionally, until hot throughout. Divide spaghetti between 4 large bowls. Top with chili, cheese, remaining onions, and beans. Serve hot.

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