The essence of authentic regional Mexican cooking, the kind you won't find in almost any jarred mole (pronounced "mo-lay")—or most Mexican restaurants in America, for that matter. They're too much work to make.
These moles are made in Oaxaca, the capital of Mexican mole making, and I'm blown away by the incredible richness and complexity of their flavors. As pastes, they take only a bit of simmering with tomatoes, tomatillos and chicken broth to reconstitute and be ready for you to serve. An easy way to make a marvelously impressive meal in minutes.
Black Magic Mole: The King of Moles
The richest, thickest, most sensuous sauce I've ever tried. Mole Negro (or black mole) is made from half a dozen different chiles, along with tomatoes, tomatillos, fresh garlic, almonds, peanuts, sesame, cinnamon, cloves, a dozen other spices, avocado leaves and a generous dose of Mexican chocolate. Simmered for hours and then ground into a spicy, smoky, subtly sweet, ultra-rich black sauce. For an appetizer, just heat and brush on to warm tortillas, with a little crumbled cheese and roasted chiles. For dinner, pour over grilled or roasted chicken or turkey. Excellent on enchiladas. Legend has it that eating Mole Negro makes for amazing, mysterious after-dinner dreams.
Royal Red Mole
The spiciest of the three. With a blend of three chiles—chilcostle, guajillo, mora—and almonds, cacao, cinnamon, dried fruits and spices. Reconstitute the paste with ripe tomatoes for a spicy mole rojo.
An authentic taste of Mexico that's hard to find outside Oaxaca. It's milder than Black Mole but equally interesting, made from ancho and guajillo chiles, almonds, peppercorns, plantains, onions, fresh garlic, sesame seeds, raisins and Mexican chocolate. Excellent with all sorts of poultry or vegetables. It makes a superb sauce for enchiladas.
These mole pastes are so thick and intense they sometimes settle in the jar, making them look like someone stole a little bit from the top. Fear not. They are the correct weight and haven't been opened or tampered with.