Wednesday, March 14, 2012

MOLE POBLANO

If tacos, burritos and nachos are what come to mind when you think of Mexican food, then you have a wonderful gastronomic surprise to look forward to.

Mexican culinary customs are somewhat varied, as is that country’s geography, ethnic populations and climate. Because Mexico, a ruggedly beautiful nation, is a milieu of deserts, tropical jungles, volcanoes, cloud forests and fertile tracts, it follows that her cookery would also be wide-ranging. Mexican food’s cultural legacy includes important native foods like squash, legumes, cacao and chilies but almost every known fruit and vegetable is farmed in Mexico.

One of the most venerated of Mexican dishes comes out of Central Mexico from the state of Puebla. Arguably the most famous Mexican dish, it is called mole (moe lay) poblano, the mole from Puebla. Constructed with Mexican foodstuffs, mole shows off the rich colourful aspect of Mexican cuisine, distinctly opposite the standard fare usually seen in United States Mexican restaurants.

Mole, from an old Aztec word meaning concoction, stew or sauce is an international mixture of ingredients, probably the first international dish created in the new world and is what makes Mexican cuisine so special. There are many varieties of mole and this is the most famous.

Adapted from Jose L. Romero’s recipe, featured in Betty Crocker’s Mexican Cookbook

Chicken Mole Poblano                                    serves 8

Ingredients

½ cup lard or shortening
¼ cup powdered chile (guajillo or ancho or a combination of both is good)
2 cups chicken broth
12 flour tortillas, cut up into small pieces
½ cup tomato sauce
1 onion, chopped (about ½ cup)
3 cloves garlic, chopped finely
2 chipotle peppers, chopped finely
2 tablespoons raisins
2 tablespoons chopped almonds or walnuts
2 tablespoons sesame seeds
2 tablespoons pumpkin seeds
2 tablespoons peanut butter
1 tablespoon sugar
½ teaspoon each of salt and black pepper
1 tablespoon dried oregano
1 tablespoon cocoa
1 teaspoon anise seed
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon ground cloves
½ teaspoon nutmeg
½ teaspoon ground allspice
½ teaspoon ground ginger
½ teaspoon ground cumin
2 cups chicken broth
8 chicken breast halves, boneless and skinless

Method

  1. Heat lard in 12 inch skillet over medium flame
  2. Cook and stir powdered chile in lard until brown, add a little water if necessary
  3. Remove from heat and let cool
  4. Stir in 2 cups of chicken broth
  5. Add remainder of ingredients except 2 cups of broth and chicken
  6. Heat to boiling, reduce heat and simmer uncovered for 1 hour
  7. Remove from heat and cool

  1. Pour a small amount of sauce into electric blender, cover and blend
  2. Remove and repeat until all the sauce is liquefied and smooth
  3. Heat 2 cups of the sauce and the last 2 cups of broth to boiling in the skillet
  4. Reduce heat to a simmer
  5. Place chicken in a single layer in the skillet
  6. Cover and simmer until done 45-60 minutes
  7. Add remaining sauce and heat until hot
  8. The chicken mole is now ready to serve

The sauce should be thick enough to coat the back of a spoon.

I know the ingredient list is a little lengthy, but the results are worth the effort. However, prepared mole can also be purchased in jars and if you have never cooked mole you might want to try that. After you have enjoyed mole poblano, please try this recipe, it is utterly, unbelievably, undeniably, unerringly, unequivocally, unparalleled and ultra urbane. Its taste is unforgettable. Enjoy.

16 comments:

Susanne Drazic said...

Hi Anthony! Sounds like an interesting recipe. I think I'd use the jarred mole the first time around, just to get an idea of what it's suppose to taste like. Thanks for sharing the recipe. My guys might be interested in trying it.

Susanne
PUTTING WORDS DOWN ON PAPER

Chandrani said...

Very interesting and yummy dish.

Cuisine Delights
My First Event - "COLOURFUL HOLI".

Leovi said...

I love this great recipe, tasty food.

Lynda R Young said...

Oh! I used to enjoy this dish on a regular occasion, well, a version of this dish. Love it!

anthony stemke said...

SUSANNE DRAZIC: Give it a try, it is delicious and this recipe is the best I've ever used.

CHANDRANI: Thank You, it is.

LEOVI: Yes, it has a wonderful flavour.

LYNDA R YOUNG: The sauce can be used on other foods as well, even vegetables.

The Golden Eagle said...

This dish has an interesting history!

Malli said...

Interesting article about Mexican food and the color on that mole is beautiful!!

Misha Gericke said...

Oooh that does look like a taste explosion. :-)

anthony stemke said...

THE GOLDEN EAGLE: Yes it does and is sensational tasting.

MALLI: Yes, it has a rich colour indeed.

MISHA GERICKE: Thank You, you have a nice way of descibing Mole.

My Journey With Candida said...

There are sure a lot of healthy foods that go into this Mole Poblano. I am going to try and adapt it so I can eat it. Sounds so good.

Teena Mary said...

wow....amazing recipe!!! Can't wait to try this!

anthony stemke said...

MY JOURNEY WITH CANDIDA: I would imagine it is fairly alkaline entree. It definately tastes great.

TEENA MARY: You will love it, the taste is amazing.

LoLy said...

WOW, this looks really yummy :)

anthony stemke said...

LOLY: Yeah it is, Mole is Mexican haute cuisine.

Jean said...

You are nominated for an award--please come and pick it up at my blog jean! xox

anthony stemke said...

JEAN: Thank You very much.

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