As the summer weather approaches, I start to cook large batches of things that are somewhat time consuming. Since many of us in the Pacific Northwest do not have air conditioning, summer is a time when we dread turning on our stove or oven. For me, this means at any given time you will find quarts full of various frozen sauces and stews that are all ready to use for a meal on the go. Since a lot of these recipes are so labor intensive it actually makes sense to double up the recipe and freeze the rest or give it away as gifts.
In the spirit of slow cooked eats I thought I would share my take on Mole, a delicious and versatile sauce that can be used in and on many dishes. Throw a few cups and some chicken broth in a crock pot, along with some cubed chicken or pork, and spend all day in your yard. When you come inside after a long day of yard work, dinner is minutes away with a quick salad, and some warm tortillas. This recipe can also easily be adapted for vegetarians by using vegetable stock instead of chicken and goes great with rice and vegetables. Enjoy!
1 qt. chicken stock
2 large yellow onions, rough chopped
5 cloves garlic, smashed
3 Passila chiles, dried & seeded
3 Cascabel chile, dried & seeded
3 Guajillo chile, dried & seeded
1 tablespoon dried oregano
4-5 tablespoons ground cumin
6 tablespoons vegetable oil
Mexican chocolate to taste (about 3 oz)
3 oz toasted almonds
3 oz toasted pepitas
2 oz dried banana chips (optional)
Heat a large pot to medium high and add two tablespoons of vegetable oil. Add onions and garlic and cook for about 3 minutes or until the onions are soft. Add the dried chilies and stir into to mixture and cook for 2 minutes to allow the chilies to bloom then cover with stock and bring to a simmer. Once it has started to simmer add oregano and cumin and allow to simmer for 30-45 minutes.
Heat your oven to 350 degrees and place pepitas and almonds on a cookie tray you will want to lightly toast them until they are fragrant. Once they are toasted let them cool, Put them in a food processor and pulse until they are the consistency of coarse corn meal and set aside.
In a blender add the chile, onion garlic and stock mixture carefully with a ladle. Purée the mixture until smooth then work it through a wire mesh strainer to remove any seed fragment that may have been missed as well as chile skin (it can be bitter if left in).
Pour the mixture back into the pot and add your ground nut/seeds and bring back up to a slow simmer. Allow the sauce to simmer for about 15 minutes then reduce the heat to low.
As most of you know, Mole sauce originated in Mexico and is most popular in the central and southern regions of the country. Here are some other food events happening around the country that focus on Mexican cuisine and spirits.
Every Sunday until Sunday, June 30 I Taco Truck Tour – Columbus, Ohio Taco trucks serve up far more than just tacos, and nobody knows Columbus’s expansive taco truck scene better than Columbus Food Adventures. This van tour will explore the taco trucks of west side, taking you to some of our favorites and providing you with the best of Mexican food in Columbus. Each stop includes a tasting, and the tour is structured with an emphasis on individual truck specialties as well as the diversity of regional cuisine found at these trucks.
Monday, June 3 I Sprited Sirens’ “Mexican Maidens” Tequila & Mezcal Tasting – Miami, Florida Join Jennifer Massolo, Founder of Spirited Sirens, a female-focused tasting series and blog, at Michael’s Genuine Food and Drink in Miami for “Mexican Maidens”, a Tequila and Mezcal tasting. The two hour program will include a seated, guided tasting which will include two Tequilas and two Mezcals along with two family-style dishes, to explore the food pairing possibilities of these fine spirits. At the end of the evening, a closing cocktail will be served, paired with a sweeter bite.
Tuesday, June 4 I A Mexican Market Supper – Asheville, North Carolina West Asheville Tailgate Market presents A Mexican Market Supper with chefs Suzy Phillips (Gypsy Queen Cuisine) and Brian Canipelli (Cucina 24). A farm-to-table, family-style, Mexican meal that is sourced primarily from vendors of the tailgate market with vegetarian and meat options. The chefs will be preparing the meal on site. Dining will happen right on site at the tailgate market parking lot. The market supper is a unique way to support the local food movement, meet the farmers that grow your food, and commune with neighbors over a fresh, local, artisan-prepared meal. All proceeds will be used to support the growth of the tailgate market.