Bert’s Chicken Mole

IMG_0707RECIPE #444, DAY #615

FOUR STARS

ORIGINAL RECIPE: “” from Bert Greene’s Kitchen Bouquets

TIMING: 1 ½ hours

DIFFICULTY: Moderate. It is a little difficult to get the sauce to the consistency I was imagining.

TOOLS: Saute pan, soup pot, baking pan, tongs, etc.

COOK TYPE: Stovetop

HEALTH: This has lots of things that are great for you. Full of aromatics and spices, nuts, fruits, and white meat, this is a great place to start a meal.

IMG_0698EXPERIENCE: I love molé. Of course, I can’t love every molé, because they can vary quite a bit. But as a rule? I make a point to try it if it’s on the menu. And I have a met a few spectacular molés.

I get this feeling that culturally, “they” would rather keep molé in the culture. Like, anyone else just doesn’t know what they’re doing with molé. This might come from the sheer variety of recipes for molé, which can change from town to town and family to family. It also might come from the sheer number of ingredients in some molés.

At any rate, this mole was complex and a little noxious, in a wonderful way. My husband and I love it. Our kids opted for barbecue sauce.

It is also chunky, which is not how I usually have mole. I tried to smooth it out, but there was no way it was going to get there, even with ten minutes from the immersion blender. Still, chunky was tasty.

NOTES: I went with boneless chicken because I have two bone-phobes in my house. Bone-in would be normal, but you could also use thighs or breasts. For bone-in, it could be a mix, or all economical drumsticks.

***

  1. In a soup pot, place 2 pounds chicken, 1 carrot, 1 rib celery, ½ onion studded with 6 cloves, ½ lemon, 1 peeled garlic clove, 1 teaspoon salt, and 2 sprigs parsley. Cover with cold water and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer 45 minutes. Chicken should be tender but not falling apart.
  2. Remove chicken and set aside. (Strain broth into a container, cover, and save for later use.)
  3. Preheat oven to 275F.
  4. In a saute pan, heat 1 tablespoon unsalted butter over medium-high heat. Add 1 diced onion and cook until beginning to brown. Add 1 minced clove garlic and the chicken pieces, making sure not to crowd the pan. Get the chicken nice and brown on both sides, then place in a baking pan. Continue until all chicken is browned.
  5. Place the pan in the oven.
  6. Reduce the heat on the onions to medium-low. Add 4 ounces canned diced chilies, 1/2 tablespoons chili powder, 1/2 teaspoon beef bouillon paste, 1/2 teaspoon sesame seeds, ¼ teaspoon cinnamon, and a pinch of clove. Cook until it thickens.
  7. Add 1 tablespoons minced cilantro and 1 tablespoon unsalted butter and stir.
  8. Reduce heat to low and add ¼ cup raisins, 2 tablespoons ground almonds, 2 tablespoons bread crumbs, 1 tablespoons brown sugar, and ½ ounce dark chocolate. Stir in ¾ cup chicken stock (which can easily come from the stock you inadvertently made earlier). Season with salt and pepper.
  9. Remove chicken from the oven, raise heat to 350F, smother with the sauce, and bake for 10 minutes. Serve hot, sprinkled with parsley and minced shallot.

***

Serve with Bacon Black Beans and Rice. Please!

LEFTOVER IDEAS: It does warm in the toaster oven, just fine, but it’s best right away. Serve with fresh rice.

*Recipe changed from the original.

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