Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Chicken Mole

I post this in response to your request, Mateo. Me gusta pollo con mole! Millie actually likes this better than any of us, and since the time I made it a month and a half ago, she's requested it about a dozen times. Go figure.

Many thanks to Paula Deen, whose Quick Chicken Mole recipe I used as a base to which I added and subtracted ingredients.

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 onion, chopped
at least 6 cloves fresh garlic, chopped or put through garlic press
@ 1 and 1/2 tablespoons chili powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 and 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp. ground cloves
1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
1 tsp. sea salt
@ 2 tsp. freshly grated orange zest
ground cayenne pepper, to taste
1 can diced tomatoes, drained (I used home-canned tomatoes, to taste, about a pint?)
2 chipotle peppers, roughly chopped (I used about 1/3 cup poblano chiles, roughly chopped, because we had some leftover from making chiles rellenos)
1 (10-ounce) can chicken broth (Boil the chicken carcass to make the broth!!!)
2 tablespoons peanut butter
2 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped
1 (5-pound) chicken, cut into 8 pieces

Sesame seeds and queso blanco, for garnish
Corn tortillas or white rice, for serving

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Heat oil in a saute pan over medium heat. Add onion and saute until translucent. Add garlic and briefly saute to develop flavor (don't overcook the garlic, however). Add diced tomatoes, chipotles, broth, spices, orange zest, peanut butter, and chocolate. Simmer for 10 minutes. Puree until smooth.

I went so far as to find a recipe for homemade corn tortillas before I came to my senses and served it with white rice. We also had no sesame seeds, and our queso blanco was highest quality monterey jack block cheese from Aldi. :) A few suggestions: if serving with corn tortillas, the amount of sauce is sufficient; if serving with rice, double the sauce. You'll need it. Second: add more cayenne if your hot peppers, like ours, were simply not hot enough. Third: Add or subtract to your liking! This dish is quite similar to the one we had in New York City, but as that's my only experience with chicken mole, I don't have any other standard to compare this to.

De nada!


Liana said...

is this REALLY good?! I have a hard time thinking I'm going to have some chocolate, pButter, and cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, cayenne pepper all in the SAME dish...

Rebecca said...

Ahhh...the REAL version. From SCRATCH?!?! I am VERY impressed with you Abby! I am going to have to try the 'real' version sometime and have Tito come over. WOuldn't that just beat all to fix Chicken Mole better than a Mexican!?!? :-)

PS. Honestly, It was HARD to refrain from making rice for it when WE had it. It seems like that would be perfect, but I could tell I would have offended him if I did. Probably, when I fix it again, I will add rice. Maybe that is just me being American but I like to see more than a single food on my plate!

Matt said...

I just knew by hinting at liking mole that you would be so inclined to hunt down a recipe. My evil scheme is working perfectly.
Now only if we had a dinner invitation.

abigail said...

If you can take Millie's word for it, it's one of the best meals ever. I think it's pretty good, but in the small pool of Mexican dishes I make, chiles rellenos easily take the ribbon. The small amounts of chocolate and peanut butter in the mole aren't really recognizable as such, but their presence adds subtle flavor that offsets the spiciness well. Actually, when I made it, it wasn't very spicy at all, which probably explains why Millie liked it.

I really loved it with corn tortillas at the Mexican restaurant, and their tortillas seemed a lighter corn (or perhaps more finely ground?) tortilla than the generic ones I've bought before. Oh, and don't ever try to best a Mexican on the national dish of his country. Like I said, I've only had this outside our own home one time, so I don't know what the range of mole goodness includes.

I was bound to try it, anyway. Your request just made it inevitable. Now, the problem is figuring out how to get MILLIE to stop requesting it...
You should know that you and yours are invited, officially, at any drop-of-the-hat-moment. (Just give us a heads up of a few hours if you want the mole served.)