Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Cincinnati Chili

Ok, let me first start by saying that I never knew such a thing existed before about a month ago when one of the games I play started this "face off" between foods in the game (Cafe World).  It wanted me to pick Cincinnati Chili vs Texas Chili.  Well, being an Oklahoman I picked Texas and was puzzled by the new dish I never heard of.  Days went by and I kept getting asked this question til one day I finally decided to Google it.  Turns out that Cinci chili, as some call it, is not really a chili at all, but more or less a spaghetti sauce.  I concur.  It is the Greek's version and it features some "sweet" spices (that's what I call them) in them rather than savory ones, although it has a few in there as well.  One of the most famous Cinci chilis is Skyline's chili.  Many seem to think it would have chocolate in it, but it doesn't.  Look on their web site and go to their food allergy list.  Since chocolate is a popular allergy, it would have to be included on the list of known allergens, which it is not.  Seeing the name Skyline when my search went on made me remember seeing something about this chili in my Top Secret Recipes book by Todd Wilbur.  Sorry, but I love this dude.  He's a food geek and a scientist in one fail swoop.  *swoon*  I digress.  So anywho, I had eaten my version of chili before, and I suppose it is Texas chili, but as Alton Brown would tell you, true Texas Chili con Carne has no beans, and the stuff I am used to does.  This chili however, has no beans, and tiny pieces of meat and was originally served many different ways.  Three way: spooned on spaghetti and covered in a heaping pile of fluffy shredded cheese.  Four way: add onions to that, or Five way: all that with rinsed, drained kidney beans on top.  All are YUM.  Here is a link to the recipe.  Only thing I did different was I used an 80% lean beef and put it IN the liquid before browning.  Reading through all the blogs and all the sites' comments, people say that this is the way "its done" and that is how the meat gets into tiny little pieces.  Todd Wilbur's version that you can buy a copy of or try this one that someone already posted to a site, so I don't get busted for copyright infringement.  HA :)  Enjoy.  Also, this chili is quite similar to the chili used at many Coney Islander's on their coneys.  If you don't like the sweet flair, I also modded the recipe to make it a savory hot dog chili.  Replace all spices with one Chili seasoning packet of your choice (don't omit anything else) and don't add the extra 1/2 cup of water.  Let it simmer for a long time, or until desired consistency, and you have "Better-than Wolf Brand" chili for your hot dogs! NOM!

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