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Unusual Ingredients in Chili con Carne


Porthos
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My DW pulled the following recipe off of the internet to cook for a pot luck today. The major differences in prep and cooking were chili powder in place of the ancho chiles and cooking it overnight in a chicken roaster we use like an oversize slow cooker. When I got up this morning I asked her how it turned out and she said it didn't taste like chili to her. I had a taste and said it tasted like it had sweet spices in it. I was surprised when I read the recipe. It calls for allspice, cinnamon, and cloves. These seem like pretty unusual ingredients for chili con carne. I was more or less able to rescue it by reducing the rather liquidy sauce and adding more garlic and cumin.

Do these ingredients seem out of place to you?

www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/Chili-con-Carne-363749

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Porthos Potwatcher
The Once and Future Cook

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I've never been a fan of sweet chili. I think Cincinnati chili is sweet, and served over rice - but, since it's not something appealing to me, haven't done enough research/investigation into Cincinnati chili to really know. When we lived in Missouri, I had a neighbor that loved her chili (as do we all, I guess), and she brought some over to us every time she made it. It was sweet, and we didn't like it, so we put it down the kitchen sink. I did initially try to fix it, but couldn't.

However, I do put a small wedge of Mexican chocolate (the kind they sell to make hot chocolate, like Abuelita or Ibarra) in my chili. It's got a bit of cinnamon in it, in addition to the chocolate and sugar.

I don't put much of it in, though, just a small chunk into a big soup pot. It's very hard to detect, unless you're specifically tasting for it. I definitely don't think anyone would call my chili "sweet."

At least, nobody ever has.

Edited by Jaymes (log)

I don't understand why rappers have to hunch over while they stomp around the stage hollering.  It hurts my back to watch them. On the other hand, I've been thinking that perhaps I should start a rap group here at the Old Folks' Home.  Most of us already walk like that.

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I used a recipe for carnitas a couple of years back that was more like sweet and sour pork than carnitas. I went with it because it had such a high rating from others. Apparently these others have not tasted much authentic carnitas. I did rework that recipe and had much better results then next time I made it.

Porthos Potwatcher
The Once and Future Cook

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The recipe sounds OK to me. Cinnamon, cloves, allspice in chili or a ground meat sauce? It's fine to me. Although not a "chili", I make a meat sauce for pasta from time to time where the ingredients that go in aside from the ground meat(s) include the requisite onions, of course (sautéed/browned), tomatoes, KETCHUP (Heinz) frequently, rice vinegar, soy sauce, several sticks of cinnamon, a good handful of cloves, simmer...YUM!

That posted recipe does not use sugar. Question: what do you all mean when you say it is "sweet"? I suppose it is the taste sensation of the cinnamon/cloves/allspice that gives the "impression" of sweetness? To me I would tend more to simply think of or describe the taste sensation from these spices as just cinnamon-y, clove-y, etc.

BTW, Cincy chili is not served on rice. It is served on spaghetti almost always ordered with at least heaps of finely shredded cheddar cheese (3-way). I like Skyline chili, usually 4-way onions. Cincy chili and the best known purveyor of it (Skyline) has got a lot of grief on eG, unjustly in my view, although a few others have spoken up in its defense on eG too.

Edited by huiray (log)
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I have several chili recipes that include chocolate - but it is bitter chocolate or unsweetened cocoa - no sugar or spices.

I never use "chili powder" - I grind dried chiles - always have some on hand because they do keep well and ground chile loses much of its "flavor" (not the heat) rapidly.

"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

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The Question: what do you all mean when you say it is "sweet"?.

When I said "sweet spices" I was trying to convey that the spices in question in that combination is something I associate with things like cookies as opposed to savory dishes. Both my DW and I felt that their contribution was out of place for what we were expecting.

For reasons that are not clear, and accept that this is how she now does things, my DW has mostly abandoned our collection of cookbooks to look for recipes in deference to using the internet. There are so many recipes that just don't work out there that I am leery of the net as a source. I have noted in other posts that when I do pull recipes from the net I word process them into the format I prefer. Just doing that has revealed flaws in recipes. My pet peave is that water is an ingredient, especially if a specific quantity is called for, and belongs in the ingredient list. Note that the 2 cups of water in this recipe was not in the ingredient list.

Porthos Potwatcher
The Once and Future Cook

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BTW, Cincy chili is not served on rice. It is served on spaghetti almost always ordered with at least heaps of finely shredded cheddar cheese (3-way). I like Skyline chili, usually 4-way onions. Cincy chili and the best known purveyor of it (Skyline) has got a lot of grief on eG, unjustly in my view, although a few others have spoken up in its defense on eG too.

Well, there you go. Said I don't know much about it, other than that it's sweet, and that doesn't appeal to me.

However, should add that I've never had it and, if I know me, I'd probably like it just fine at "Skyline," with heaps of cheese and onions.

There are not many things in this world that I don't like.

Unfortunately.

As for the spices, and sweet...

Obviously, not everything to which you add cloves, cinnamon, etc., is sweet. I sure do love Stifado, a Greek beef & onion stew, which adds those sorts of spices, and which is not a sweet dish.

But the sweet chilies that I have had (like that which my Missouri neighbor made) did have those sorts of spices added.

Chili cook-offs are very popular in Texas and all sorts of folks add all sorts of mysterious and secret ingredients in an effort to outdo their opponents.

With varying degrees of success.

Edited by Jaymes (log)
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I don't understand why rappers have to hunch over while they stomp around the stage hollering.  It hurts my back to watch them. On the other hand, I've been thinking that perhaps I should start a rap group here at the Old Folks' Home.  Most of us already walk like that.

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A hint of allspice, cinnamon and cloves is common in some chili recipes in my neck-of the-woods - the Finger Lakes region of New York.

Especially so in condiment type chili that goes on hot hogs, burgers and the like or Greek chili.

Edited by DiggingDogFarm (log)
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~Martin :)

I just don't want to look back and think "I could have eaten that."

Unsupervised, rebellious, radical agrarian experimenter, minimalist penny-pincher, and adventurous cook. Crotchety, cantankerous, terse curmudgeon, non-conformist, and contrarian who questions everything!

The best thing about a vegetable garden is all the meat you can hunt and trap out of it!

 

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Without a doubt it's a regional thing.

The homemade chili I grew up with was the traditional type, but there are numerous other versions popular in this area.

Edited by DiggingDogFarm (log)

~Martin :)

I just don't want to look back and think "I could have eaten that."

Unsupervised, rebellious, radical agrarian experimenter, minimalist penny-pincher, and adventurous cook. Crotchety, cantankerous, terse curmudgeon, non-conformist, and contrarian who questions everything!

The best thing about a vegetable garden is all the meat you can hunt and trap out of it!

 

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I think it's safe to say that Thunderbolt Chili wins the prize for most unusual ingredients in a chili.

For reference, here are the ingredients:

4-5 strips of bacon

cracked black pepper

1 pound ground beef

1/2-1 pound ground turkey

2 onions

1 bell pepper

1 fennel

1-2 carrots

1/2 eggplant

2/3 teaspoon curry powder

2 tablespoons crushed red pepper

1-2 tablespoons dried rosemary

1-2 tablespoons adobo seasoning

5-7 garlic cloves

3 tablespoons fig jam

1/2 cup yellow mustard

1-2 tablespoons Thai chili sauce

1-2 tablespoons Hungarian paprika

1/2 cup barbecue sauce

1/3 jar of pickles (with juice)

1 poblano chili

1/4 cup brown sugar

1 teaspoon cinnamon

2 tablespoons salt

1/3 cup spaghetti sauce

1 cup beer

1/2-1 cup cooked rice

1 handful of baby arugula

2/3 cup cherry tomatoes

1 small package pork rinds (crushed)

1 handful of cilantro

unlimited pepper jack cheese (shredded)

1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper

1 can kidney beans

1 can pinto beans

PS: I am a guy.

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BTW, Cincy chili is not served on rice. It is served on spaghetti almost always ordered with at least heaps of finely shredded cheddar cheese (3-way). I like Skyline chili, usually 4-way onions. Cincy chili and the best known purveyor of it (Skyline) has got a lot of grief on eG, unjustly in my view, although a few others have spoken up in its defense on eG too.

Well, there you go. Said I don't know much about it, other than that it's sweet, and that doesn't appeal to me.

However, should add that I've never had it and, if I know me, I'd probably like it just fine at "Skyline," with heaps of cheese and onions.

.....

Heh. Well, take a look at this.

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BTW, Cincy chili is not served on rice. It is served on spaghetti almost always ordered with at least heaps of finely shredded cheddar cheese (3-way). I like Skyline chili, usually 4-way onions. Cincy chili and the best known purveyor of it (Skyline) has got a lot of grief on eG, unjustly in my view, although a few others have spoken up in its defense on eG too.

Well, there you go. Said I don't know much about it, other than that it's sweet, and that doesn't appeal to me.

However, should add that I've never had it and, if I know me, I'd probably like it just fine at "Skyline," with heaps of cheese and onions.

.....

Heh. Well, take a look at this.

Golly. I might need to take a trip to Cincinnati.

Just for, um, research, um, purposes.

I don't understand why rappers have to hunch over while they stomp around the stage hollering.  It hurts my back to watch them. On the other hand, I've been thinking that perhaps I should start a rap group here at the Old Folks' Home.  Most of us already walk like that.

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I used a recipe for carnitas a couple of years back that was more like sweet and sour pork than carnitas. I went with it because it had such a high rating from others. Apparently these others have not tasted much authentic carnitas. I did rework that recipe and had much better results then next time I made it.

We went to Quiroga, Michoacán last Sunday afternoon with Mexican friends. They recommended a specific carnitas stand out of the many in front of the main plaza. They were accurate in their recommendation. The meat was tender and delicious, and as usual, (as far as I can tell), the only elements were pig and salt.

We'd been to Quiroga for carnitas several times before, but these were by far the best we've had. So good, that we are taking visiting family there next week.

IMG_0631.JPG

IMG_0636.JPG

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Buen provecho, Panosmex
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I think it's safe to say that Thunderbolt Chili wins the prize for most unusual ingredients in a chili.

For reference, here are the ingredients:

4-5 strips of bacon

cracked black pepper

1 pound ground beef

1/2-1 pound ground turkey

2 onions

1 bell pepper

1 fennel

1-2 carrots

1/2 eggplant

2/3 teaspoon curry powder

2 tablespoons crushed red pepper

1-2 tablespoons dried rosemary

1-2 tablespoons adobo seasoning

5-7 garlic cloves

3 tablespoons fig jam

1/2 cup yellow mustard

1-2 tablespoons Thai chili sauce

1-2 tablespoons Hungarian paprika

1/2 cup barbecue sauce

1/3 jar of pickles (with juice)

1 poblano chili

1/4 cup brown sugar

1 teaspoon cinnamon

2 tablespoons salt

1/3 cup spaghetti sauce

1 cup beer

1/2-1 cup cooked rice

1 handful of baby arugula

2/3 cup cherry tomatoes

1 small package pork rinds (crushed)

1 handful of cilantro

unlimited pepper jack cheese (shredded)

1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper

1 can kidney beans

1 can pinto beans

Talk about pot luck. It's like someone has upended half a dozen grocery bags into a stock pot and parked it on the stove for a couple of hours.

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Chris Taylor

Host, eG Forums - ctaylor@egstaff.org

 

I've never met an animal I didn't enjoy with salt and pepper.

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Harare, Victoria Falls and some places in between

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BTW, Cincy chili is not served on rice. It is served on spaghetti almost always ordered with at least heaps of finely shredded cheddar cheese (3-way). I like Skyline chili, usually 4-way onions. Cincy chili and the best known purveyor of it (Skyline) has got a lot of grief on eG, unjustly in my view, although a few others have spoken up in its defense on eG too.

Well, there you go. Said I don't know much about it, other than that it's sweet, and that doesn't appeal to me.

However, should add that I've never had it and, if I know me, I'd probably like it just fine at "Skyline," with heaps of cheese and onions.

.....

Heh. Well, take a look at this.

Golly. I might need to take a trip to Cincinnati.

Just for, um, research, um, purposes.

Don't base a decision to try Skyline Chili on the pictures! It looks good but it's taste is uninspiring to say the least. It's hard for someone who really likes chili to even call it chili. It has no heat to it whatsoever, is slightly sweet and it's hard to describe its overall flavor. Besides serving on top of spaghetti noodles?? Only if you add enough onions and cheese is that even edible IMO.

When we moved to Louisville everybody kept saying that I had to try it so I did, one time. If you like it chili you certainly won't like it and it's definitely not worth going out of your way to try.

I've learned that artificial intelligence is no match for natural stupidity.

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BTW, Cincy chili is not served on rice. It is served on spaghetti almost always ordered with at least heaps of finely shredded cheddar cheese (3-way). I like Skyline chili, usually 4-way onions. Cincy chili and the best known purveyor of it (Skyline) has got a lot of grief on eG, unjustly in my view, although a few others have spoken up in its defense on eG too.

Well, there you go. Said I don't know much about it, other than that it's sweet, and that doesn't appeal to me.

However, should add that I've never had it and, if I know me, I'd probably like it just fine at "Skyline," with heaps of cheese and onions.

.....

Heh. Well, take a look at this.

Golly. I might need to take a trip to Cincinnati.

Just for, um, research, um, purposes.

Don't base a decision to try Skyline Chili on the pictures! It looks good but it's taste is uninspiring to say the least. It's hard for someone who really likes chili to even call it chili. It has no heat to it whatsoever, is slightly sweet and it's hard to describe its overall flavor. Besides serving on top of spaghetti noodles?? Only if you add enough onions and cheese is that even edible IMO.

When we moved to Louisville everybody kept saying that I had to try it so I did, one time. If you like it chili you certainly won't like it and it's definitely not worth going out of your way to try.

Your description makes it sound a lot like a Sloppy Joe, only served over spaghetti, rather than on a bun.

I suppose when I try it, I'd be better off to have "Sloppy Joe" in mind, rather than "chili"?

Sounds like I'd be much less likely to be disappointed.

I don't understand why rappers have to hunch over while they stomp around the stage hollering.  It hurts my back to watch them. On the other hand, I've been thinking that perhaps I should start a rap group here at the Old Folks' Home.  Most of us already walk like that.

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Y'all are expecting Texan chili or similar when you think of Cincy chili or Skyline chili, and also based on what "chili" means to you. It is not Texan chili. It does not pack heat by design. It IS a meat sauce of GREEK derivation, meant to be served the way it is. :-) Take it for what it is. It is a regional style of "meat sauce", and y'all are free to dislike it if it does not taste like what you are used to, heh. ;-)

Edited by huiray (log)
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Yeah, chili has become a very general term...actually...off the top of my head I can't think of anything else that varies quite so much.

Golly, some are even snarfing down a lot of "white" chili.

~Martin :)

I just don't want to look back and think "I could have eaten that."

Unsupervised, rebellious, radical agrarian experimenter, minimalist penny-pincher, and adventurous cook. Crotchety, cantankerous, terse curmudgeon, non-conformist, and contrarian who questions everything!

The best thing about a vegetable garden is all the meat you can hunt and trap out of it!

 

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*Boo* to white chili, sweet chili, and all other phony chilis.

For there to be "phony" chili, there has to be a single definitive, and widely accepted as such, "authentic" chili.

It's kinda like wrestling a gorilla... you don't stop when you're tired, you stop when the gorilla is tired.

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