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"A gourmet who thinks of calories is like a tart who looks at her watch." - James Beard


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Thursday, July 10, 2014

Cincinnati Chili


On our road trip to the Southern USA we stopped in Ohio for Skyline Chili.  This is a Cincinnati specialty where a sweet and spicy chili is served over spaghetti, topped with shredded cheddar cheese and called a 3-way.  Topped with onions and/or beans it's a 4-way or 5-way.  We weren't expecting this semi-fast food to be so tasty!  So when we got home I decided to try to re-create it.


Here's what you need for this quick & easy dinner:


1 pound ground beef

1 large white onion
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground pepper


1 large can diced or crushed tomatoes
1 medium can kidney beans
3/4 pound spaghetti
2 cups grated cheddar cheese


Dice the onion and reserve about a third of it.  Cook the beef in a pan with the rest of the onions until browned.


Then add all the spices and cook for about a minute until fragrant.


Add the tomatoes and simmer for about 20 minutes until the sauce comes together and reduces slightly.  Meanwhile cook the spaghetti until al dente.  If everyone wants beans, rinse, drain and add the beans now and simmer until heated through.  Otherwise you can remove split up the sauce and add beans to only part of it.  


Serve up some spaghetti...


...and top with the chili, with beans or without.


If you like, sprinkle with the reserved raw diced onions.


I shredded the cheese very finely like they do at Skyline, but you can shred it more coarsely if you like.  


Top the chili with a generous portion of cheese.  I'm not a fan of kidney beans so I prefer the 4-way with just onions.


Matt prefers 5-way with the beans and onions.  

This Cincinnati chili is a really nice change of pace.  It is fragrant and warmly spicy without being hot.  You could add a little cayenne to spice it up even more.  Give it a try!  


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