Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Oaxaca Mole- 7 ways

Catching up on some reading and inspired by lisaiscooking with her Roasted Squash Salad, and then a blog about Mole Rojo Classico with Smoked Pheasant...Lisa gets her inspiration from her many favorite cookbooks and Bon Appetit magazines...and that reminded me to go open three I have had laying around, and wouldn't you know it...an article on Oaxaca Mole- A Mole Tour.

While the origins of mole are widely debated, with origin tales stretching back to the Aztecs, there are many different regional variations. The mole served here is velvety and chocolaty. I prefer a bit more complexity in flavor with the liberal use of aromatics and chilies when I prepare Tex-Mex dishes too. Still, most agree full chocolate flavors work best with chicken.

To be honest, I had it once 20+ years ago at a little hole in the wall Hispanic joint off a street near downtown Dallas. Once I found I did not like that flavor, I just assumed they all were like that and stayed away from ordering it again, or making it. My friend did not tell me there were other versions, and that I might like one of them...well, you live and read! I found a lot of recipes and the seven original Mole names in Bon Appetit's article and web searching...

1) mole negro -black, most well known in the US, and made with pablano peppers
2) mole verde -green, made with roasted pumpkin seeds and tomatillos
3) mole colorado -almonds and raisins made this one unique
4) mole coloradito -seemed similar to the a few of the others
5) mole amarillo -yellow, has a tan color and thickened with Masa
6) chíchilo negro -this thick black mole is usually prepared with beef as a stew
7) mancha manteles -this one contains squash or fruit, and a variety of chilies

I found quite a few different names and versions while searching...you decide...

Now I took my Delicata Squash my hubby brought home and decided to make my version of Mancha manteles...check here for the recipe and how I transformed it...Mancha Manteles with soy-rizo and delicata squash casserole...