Heirloom Meals: Savoring Yesterday's Traditions Today

Doug Ferguson’s Cincinnati Chili

Doug Ferguson’s Cincinnati Chili


1 1/2 pounds ground beef

6 cups cold water

3 tablespoons Chili powder

1 tablespoon paprika

1 tablespoon onion powder

1 teaspoon clove

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1 teaspoon allspice

1 teaspoon cumin

2 teaspoon salt (1 at the beginning and add more to taste later)

1/2 teaspoon cayenne (you can and should add more later to taste)

1 tablespoon white wine vinegar

1 tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce

9 ounces of tomato paste (1 1/2,  6 oz cans – a bit of a waste, I know)

2 bay leaves


Add the beef to large pot and cover with water.  Break it up with a fork until the meat breaks up into small pieces. Bring to a simmer and add all your ingredients and bring to a boil.

Reduce to a simmer and let is bubble for at least 2 hours.  Adjust your seasoning to your liking.

You may continue to reduce the mixture for as much as another hour.  You want to get it so it’s not running a clear liquid out from a slotted spoon.  It needs to be one, saucy product.

You can also add a teaspoon of unsweetened cocoa powder and I’ve seen recipes using beef broth which I’ve tried before, but I would avoid recipes that suggest you add crushed tomatoes, diced onion or garlic.  I don’t think you want those textures messing with the fine grain of the meat. Add garlic powder for more or less flavor to your liking.


Categories: Heirloom Recipes

Tags: doug ferguson, Heirloom Meals Radio, heirloom recipe, cincinnati chili, chili