Sunday, April 1, 2018

Encore: Cooking with Leo

(1924 -2013) 

A Chili Recipe

Somebody Called This Cincinnati Chili, but Don’t Ask Me Why
Don’t rightly know who or what Cincinnatian or Ohioan, for that matter, invented this recipe. But, it deserves a little recognition for being fairly decent stuff. The original recipe called for beans (how awful) and water (yuch). But, with my superior knowledge and improvisational culinary skills, whatever, I came up with reasonable substitutes for the yuch stuff and cooked the beans on the side not in.
OK, let’s get cookin’.
Grab up your big heavy cast iron pot with the tight lid. Pour in two tablespoons of Olive Oil. Heat the pot and coat the oil all around. Dump in 2 ½ pounds of good, lean, coarse ground beef and brown it. Dice up two brown onions and toss them in. After the meat and onions are browned lower the heat and dump in the following:

  • 1 - 6oz can of tomato paste, don’t toss out the can yet.
  • 1 - 12 oz can of Mick or Bud, use some of this to clean up the tomato paste can then toss the can out.
  • 2 oz red wine vinegar.
  • 1 tblspn Worcestershire Sauce
  • 1 - 12 oz can of Coke Classic.
  • 1 chopped up clove of garlic.
  • 2 tblspn Chili Powder
  • 6 Bay Leaves.
  • 2 tspn ground Cinnamon.
  • 1 tspn Allspice.
  • 2 tspn Cayenne Pepper.
  • 1 tblspn Hershey’s Unsweetened Cocoa (not chocolate drink mix).
  • 1 tblspn very fine ground Coffee (don’t use instant stuff).
  • 1 tspn coarse ground Black Pepper.
  • Simmer for 1 ½ - 2 hours and stir so that nothing burns or sticks to the bottom of the pot. Toss out the bay leaves and serve in 5 different ways:
      One Way - Plain Chili
      Two Way - Chili on Spaghetti
      Three Way - Chili on Spaghetti, with grated Cheddar Cheese on top.
      Four Way - Chili on Spaghetti, with grated Cheese and diced Onions on top.
      Five Way - Chili and Kidney beans, on Spaghetti, with Cheese and Onions.
    (If you want beans for your chili, read on).

    Side Orders

    Frijoles Negros Exquisitos
    Just in case you don’t know what the heck I’m talkin’ about, don’t sweat it. When you start readin’ and fixin’, you’ll figure it out real fast.
    This is what you’re gonna need:

  • 2 LB’s Black Beans (dry bulk beans, - don’t go huntin’ for cans)
  • 2 - large onions - chopped
  • 4 - cloves garlic - chopped
  • 2 or 3 dried New Mexico Chilies (2, if you ain’t used to ‘em, or 3, if you are) crumble them up.
  • 1 or 2 bay leaves (don’t rightly matter)
  • salt
  • Other stuff, if you want to get fancy: a side dish of raw chopped onions; cilantro; Jalapeno; grated jack cheese; sour cream; fried tortillas.
  • This is how you do it:
    Soak the beans overnight in enough water to cover by about 3 inches.
    Next morning simmer the beans with onions, garlic, chilies and bay leaves about 1 ½ to 2 hours.
    Just be sure they’re tender without cookin’ em so much that they split open. If you cook ‘em gently, they won’t split. Don’t add any salt until the beans are done. And, you can pitch out the bay leaves when you’re done.
    These beans are good side dishes with Chili (I didn’t say in Chili, I said with Chili) and you can get fancy if you sprinkle some chopped onions and jack cheese over them, or serve with the other stuff I mentioned. And, don’t worry if you got too many, they’re better when they’re warmed over another time, or you can freeze ‘em, too.
    Anything Else?

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