Monday, September 8, 2008

Cincinnati-Style Chili

1 quart water
2 pounds ground chuck, crumbled
2 medium onions, finely chopped
5-6 cloves garlic, crushed (use garlic press) or minced
1 (15 ounce) can tomato sauce
2 tablespoons cider vinegar
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
10 peppercorns, ground
8 whole allspice, ground (3/4 tsp)
8 whole cloves, ground (1/2 tsp)
1 large bay leaf
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoons cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 ounce unsweetened chocolate, grated

Bring water to boil in a 4-6 quart pot. Add the ground chuck (do not brown first). Stir until separated and reduce heat to simmer. Add onions, garlic, tomato sauce, cider vinegar, and Worcestershire sauce. Stir to mix well. Add peppercorns, allspice, cloves, bay leaf, salt, cinnamon, cayenne pepper and grated unsweetened chocolate. Bring back to a boil, then reduce to simmer for 2 1/2 hours cooking time in all. Cool uncovered and refrigerate overnight.

Skim all or most of the fat and discard. Discard bay leaf. Reheat and serve over hot spaghetti, cooked al dente.

Optional toppings:
Finely-grated Cheddar cheese, chopped onion, red kidney beans. Serve oyster crackers and red pepper sauce on the side.

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