Take a look at any recipe for Cincinnati chili and you’ll quickly notice a few oddball ingredients that sound like they just should not be there: cinnamon, chocolate, allspice, and cloves. That’s because this dish is heavily influenced by the native cuisine of the Greek immigrants who created it to serve in their own restaurants. Over the years I’ve adapted my own interpretation. Instead of spaghetti, I like to serve it with fusilli because it “holds” the chili better. Reducing it down more than traditional recipes call for concentrates the flavors. A bottle of stout gives it a special zing. This dish is definitely for the adventurous palate and a great way to warm up during the harsh winter months. —MiscMarsha
In a dutch oven, saute onions over medium-high heat 2-3 minutes – just until they start to sweat.
Add beef and cook until browned, about five minutes.
Add cocoa powder, chili powder, cumin, cinnamon, cloves, allspice, and cayenne powder. Coat the onions and beef thoroughly and cook 1 minute.
Deglaze the pan with stout. Allow it to simmer for 2-3 minutes to cook out some of the alcohol.
Stir in tomato sauce, vinegar, Worcestershire sauce.
Add beans, bay leaf, and garlic.
Cover with water. Bring to a boil and reduce to simmer. Cook for 1 – 2 hours, until it has reduced to desired consistency. I let mine cook down until its a tad runnier than refried beans. Salt, taste, and adjust as it cooks.
Serve over cooked fusilli pasta. Top with shredded sharp cheddar cheese and raw diced onions.