Cincinnati Five-Way Chili
Cincinnati chili five-way: (1) spaghetti, topped with (2) chili, topped with (3) beans, topped with (4) onions, topped with (5) cheese—and let's not forget a popular 6th element, oyster crackers.
1 1/4 pounds lean ground beef
2 medium onions, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup your favorite barbecue sauce
1/2 ounce unsweetened chocolate, grated
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon ground turmeric
1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
1/2 teaspoon salt
Tomato juice, as needed
9 ounces spaghetti pasta
1 tablespoon butter
1 (16-ounce) can red kidney beans
Shredded cheddar cheese for accompaniment
Oyster crackers for accompaniment
- In a large skillet or Dutch oven, brown the meat with half the chopped onions and the garlic, stirring to keep it loose. Drain any fat from the pan. Add the barbecue sauce and 1/2 cup water and bring the mixture to a boil. Add the chocolate, spices, and salt. Cover and reduce the heat. Simmer 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. The chili will thicken as it cooks. Add tomato juice as necessary, to create a brew that ladles up easily. Allow the chili to rest at least 30 minutes in a covered pan at room temperature. (Chili can be refrigerated and reheated to serve.)
- Meanwhile, cook the spaghetti until just tender. Drain and toss with the butter. Rinse the beans and put into a small saucepan. Cook over medium heat until warm. Drain any excess liquid.
- To make each plate, start with a layer of spaghetti; top it with the hot chili and then a few warm beans and some of the remaining chopped onions. Add some cheese so the chili's heat can begin to melt it.
- Serve hot, topped with oyster crackers.
Makes 4 servings.