1whole chicken, cut into pieces (or 4-5 chicken leg quarters, bone in, skin on)
¼of an onion, roughly chopped
1TablespoonChicken bouillon (powder or paste)
For the Sauce:
6dried pasilla chiles
6dried mulato chiles or guajillo chilies
5dried ancho chiles
1/2cupsesame seeds, divided
1/4cupraw shelled peanuts
2sliceswhite bread, French bread or a small bolillo roll cut in half
1/2of a white onion, sliced
5whole black peppercorns
¼ -1/2teaspooncrushed red pepper flakes
1ripe plantain (or banana), peeled, sliced into ½ inch slices
1 ½teaspoonschicken bullion
Salt to taste
2ounceschopped Mexican chocolate, (or semi-sweet or bittersweet chocolate)
1-4Tablespoonsbrown sugar, taste
The reserved broth from the cooked chicken.
2Tablespoonsoil or lard
Oil, for frying
For the chicken:
Add chicken, garlic, onion, bay leaf, chicken bouillon, salt, oregano and water to pot. Bring to a low boil and cook over medium heat until chicken is just cooked through (to about 160 degrees F –we will continue to cook it in the mole sauce), about 30 minutes. Remove chicken to a plate, (reserving the broth) cover and set aside.
For the Mole Sauce:
Add the sesame seeds to a large dry skillet over medium heat and cook them, stirring constantly, until toasted. Be careful not to burn them. Set aside.
Use scissors to cut a line down all the chilies to open them up flat. Remove veins and seeds.
Add a few tablespoons of oil to the skillet over medium heat. In a separate large saucepan, add 2 cups of water and turn heat to medium-low.
Once oil in the skillet is hot, add one layer of chilies at a time to the skillet, frying on both sides for just a few seconds, careful not to burn them, then transfer them to the saucepan of water.
We will continue to fry most of the remaining ingredients, one at a time, so add a little oil between each batch, as needed, just to coat the bottom of the pan.
Fry the peanuts stirring often so they toast but don’t burn, about 45 seconds. Add to the pot. Repeat with almonds, then raisins, then animal crackers, then corn tortilla, and bread slices, adding each to the saucepan and pressing down as much as possible into the water.
Turn skillet heat to medium-high and add more oil if needed to coat the bottom of the pan. Add onion and fry for 1-2 minutes. Add garlic and fry for just a few seconds before spooning the onion and garlic into the pot. Add sliced plantain to the hot oil and fry on both sides, then add to the pot.
Reduce heat to medium and add peppercorns, coriander seeds, cumin seeds, anise, and crushed red pepper to hot oil and fry for a few seconds, stirring constantly, then add to the pot.
To the saucepan with all of the ingredients, stir in 1 teaspoon oregano, 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon, and 1 ½ teaspoons chicken bouillon.
Add the chopped chocolate to a bowl and pour some of the chicken broth into it, to help it melt. Set aside.
Add 2 tablespoons lard or oil to a large saucepan. Once melted, remove from heat and set aside.
Working in batches, add everything from the pot with the chilies to a blender and add enough of the reserved chicken broth to allow the mixture to blend. During one of the batches, add ¼ cup of reserved toasted sesame seeds. Blend each batch for several minutes, until completely smooth, adding more chicken broth if needed.
Pour sauce through a fine mesh strainer (discarding what’s leftover in the strainer) into the pot with the melted lard.
After everything has been blended and strained to the pot, add the melted chocolate and broth mixture (you can blend it too, if the chocolate has not completely melted), to the pot. Add 1 Tablespoon of brown sugar, to start, then add more to taste, as needed.
Cook the mole sauce over medium-low heat for 30 minutes to 1 hour, stirring often. If the mixture is too thick, add more chicken broth (I usually end up using all of the remaining chicken broth). Taste and add salt or sugar, as needed.
Place chicken on a plate and ladle a big spoonful of sauce on top, then garnish with sesame seeds. Serve with Mexican rice and warm corn tortillas on the side.
Make Ahead Instructions: Mole sauce can be made up to 1 week ahead of time and stored in the fridge. Rewarm on the stove and add additional chicken stock, as needed, to reach desired consistency.Freezing Instructions: Mole sauce can be frozen for up to 4 months. Just place cooled sauce in a freezer-safe container. When ready to use, thaw overnight in the fridge, then reheat on the stove, adding additional chicken stock, as needed, to reach desired consistency.Pro Tips:
It’s VERY important NOT to burn anything, particularly the peppers, as these will turn bitter and ruin the end flavor result.
When blending, only fill the blender half full with mixture at a time, to get the smoothest puree.