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Cincinnati Chili version 1.1  
Sunday, 25 November 2007

Living in California, I miss Cincinnati Chili, a unique and special dish. Instead of having cans of Skyline shipped, which is expensive, I learned to make it myself. If you are not familiar with Cincinnati Chili, its history, and how to serve it, please read this other recipe.

Using a Crock Pot, set it on High, and add: 

2.5 cups water
~1 pound ground beef
8 - 10 ounces tomato paste (8oz can or not quite a whole 12oz can)
1 medium onion, diced finely (I use a food processor)
1/2 tsp garlic powder plus a few garlic cloves, if available
2 or 3 dashes Worcestershire sauce (to me, a dash is a shake of the bottle with its sprinkle top on)
1 tsp vinegar
1 tsp allspice
1 bay leaf or 1/2 tsp chopped bay leaves
3 cloves
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper powder or 1 tsp cayenne hot sauce
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1 tbsp chili powder
1 tsp ground cinnamon
2 tsp ground cumin
3/4 tsp ground black pepper
2 tsp salt
1 tbsp unsweetened chocolate

I think it is important to add the water and meat first. After that, I just dump in all the remaining ingredients in no specific order. Then, I just use a potato masher to mash and mix this. Cincinnati chili has a fine texture; the ground beef should not be in chunks. Let it cook one hour, stirring occassionally.

In addition to serving over pasta and cheese coneys (chili cheese dog), I often put it in a soft flour tortilla with cheese and hot sauce--a chilito. When I run out of hot dog buns, I just put sliced wieners on bread with chili and cheese on top, then eat with a fork--"open face." With a hot dog bun, often the wiener is quite large; so, I slice it longways and put half of the wiener on the bun to leave more room for the chili. Oh, and do not forget the awesome chip dip! Spread cream cheese on the bottom of a casserole dish, add warm-to-hot chili, and top with grated cheddar cheese. Let the cheese melt or put it in a warm oven a short while to melt the cheese.