Mole poblano


  • Serves 6 - 8 people

You could track down a pre-made mole paste, dilute it with chicken stock and pour it over cooked chicken or turkey. You could also spend hours producing an "authentic" mole from scratch. Or you could make a credible, simplified mole to serve with cooked chicken, turkey or pork.

  • 12 dried ancho chillies (see note)
  • 6 dried pasilla chillies (see note)
  • 125 ml (½ cup) vegetable oil
  • 50 gm (1/3 cup) each raw almonds and peanuts
  • 50 gm (1/3 cup) raisins
  • 2 slices day-old soft white bread, crusts trimmed
  • 6 garlic cloves, finely crushed
  • 2 onions, finely chopped
  • 2 vine-ripened tomatoes, coarsely chopped
  • 50 gm (1/3 cup) sesame seeds, roasted
  • ½ tsp each ground cloves and ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp dried Mexican oregano (see note)
  • 1 litre (4 cups) chicken stock
  • 95 gm Mexican drinking chocolate (or semi-sweet dark chocolate, 60% cocoa solids; see note), finely chopped
  • 300 gm cooked barbecue chicken, shredded
  • 1 cup (loosely packed) coriander leaves
  • To serve: steamed rice or corn tortillas
01   Halve chillies lengthways, reserving 1 tbsp of seeds (discard remaining seeds and stems). Heat half the oil in a frying pan over medium-high heat, fry chillies until toasted (2-4 minutes), then transfer to a bowl of warm water (reserve oil) to soak until tender (15 minutes).
02   Heat reserved oil in a frying pan over medium-high heat, fry nuts, raisins and bread slices, then drain on paper towels. Reduce heat to medium, add remaining oil, then sauté garlic and onions until tender (8-10 minutes). Add tomatoes and cook, stirring occasionally, until broken down (4-5 minutes).
03   Drain chillies (discard water) and blend with tomato mixture, nuts, raisins, bread, sesame seeds, spices, oregano and reserved chilli seeds in a blender. Add half the chicken stock and blend to a smooth paste, then pass mixture through a sieve (discard solids) and set aside.
04   Heat remaining stock in a saucepan over medium-high heat, bring to the boil, then stir in mole mixture. Add chocolate and stir until well combined (2-3 minutes), then add warmed chicken and season to taste. Divide among plates, top with coriander and serve hot with steamed rice or corn tortillas.

Note Dried chillies, Mexican chocolate and Mexican oregano are available from Fiji Market in Sydney,,, and delicatessens.

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