Chili Two Ways: Cincinnati and Southwestern

While I’m really not fussed about the Superbowl, football, or sports in general, I sure do love game day food. If you see me at a Superbowl party in the future, and I have a fanatical, excited look in my eyes, rest assured–it’s because of the food.

Chili is your game day staple. I love the stuff. Today I made a huge batch, and presented it two different ways. For the Southwestern style I served it in a bowl, topped with shredded cheddar, slices of avocado and green onions, maybe with a little more hot sauce added to it. In Cincinnati, they do it a little different. Actually very different. Ohioans top spaghetti noodles with chili that’s a little sweeter than normal, and pile on cheddar cheese and diced onions. Weird, huh? Weird, but also so awesome.

The chili itself is Cincinnati style, adapted from the blog Sweet Pea’s Kitchen. It’s warm, hearty and on the sweet side. Hands down the best tasting chili around.

Chili 065
Cincinnati chili and chili Southwestern style

ngredient list: Cayenne pepper, oregano, cinnamon, black pepper, chili powder, chicken broth (only 1 needed), canola oil, apple cider vinegar, tomato sauce, cocoa, salt, sugar, 2 cups of diced onions, 2 cloves of minced garlic, 2 lbs of ground chuck. Note: ignore the flour–not sure why I included it. Add in a can of kidney beans.

Chili 043
Accompaniments: For Southwestern chili–avocado slices, green onion, shredded cheddar. For Cincinnati chili–buttered spaghetti noodles, raw diced onions, shredded cheddar.

Pour the raw meat into a large saucepan of boiling water. Break up the meat into strands, and wait until it starts foaming. Just before the liquid starts to boil again, drain the meat and set aside.

Mix together all the spices in a small bowl.

In the large saucepan, saute the onions and garlic for about 5 minutes, then pour in the spice mixture. Saute 30 seconds more.

Mix in the broth, water, vinegar, sugar and tomato sauce. Add in the ground beef and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer for about an hour (or until desired consistency is reached), stirring occasionally. Adjust seasonings to taste, and it’s ready to eat!

Southwestern style chili – served with hot sauce, avocado slices, green onions, hot sauce and shredded cheese.

Cincinnati style chili – buttered spaghetti noodles topped with shredded cheddar cheese and diced onions.

Chili Two Ways
Serves 5, cook time 1.5 hours

  • 2 teaspoons salt, divided
  • 2 lbs ground beef chuck
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 2 cups onions, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 3 teaspoons cocoa
  • 1.5 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • .5 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • .25 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 2 cups (1 can) chicken broth
  • 2 cups H20
  • 2 tablespoons cider vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons dark brown sugar
  • 2 cups canned tomato sauce
  • 1 can kidney beans
  • 1 lb buttered spaghetti noodles
  • Diced raw onions
  • Shredded cheddar cheese
  • Sliced green onions
  • Sliced avocado
  • Hot sauce
  1. In a large saucepan, bring 2 quarts of water and 1 teaspoon of salt to a boil. Add in the raw ground beef, and stir until the beef is separated into strands.
  2. Wait for the liquid to foam. Right before it begins to boil again, drain the meat and set aside. Clean out the saucepan to use again.
  3. Mix together all of the spices (chili powder, oregano, cocoa, cinnamon, cayenne, black pepper, salt) in a small bowl.
  4. Saute the onions and garlic with the canola oil, about 5 minutes. Pour the spice mixture into the saucepan and saute about 30 seconds.
  5. Pour in the broth, water, vinegar, brown sugar and tomato sauce. Stir until completely mixed.
  6. Add in the ground beef. Bring the mixture to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 1 hour, or until thickened. Stir occasionally.
  7. Adjust the seasonings to taste.
  8. Present Cincinnati or Southwestern style – and enjoy!

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