The origin of the mole sauce is seen as Mexico’s blend of European and local Aztecan culture. Used originally in the Mexican cuisine, mole sauce is a generic name for sauces that are prepared using some key ingredients such as chilli pepper, a nut and fruit. By extension, several dishes are called by the same name because of the primary role mole sauce plays as an ingredient. The sauce varies in colour from red, black, green, colorado, almendrado, de olla, pipian, etc.
Where Did It Come From?
Many stories abound the invention of the mole sauce as well as its etymology; ‘mole’ being the ancient word for mix. Although originating in Mexico, the present day mole sauce is created out of ingredients from Europe, North America and Africa. The modern mole is a delectable assortment of ingredients from these three continents, which makes it a truly international dish, catering to diverse palettes. Depending on the fruit and other ingredients put into its preparation, mole sauce is of a number of kinds, each type tasting very different from the other. The mole is used both as a base to build a dish upon and as a sauce to pour over meat, but unlike other sauces, the Mole is a dish in itself. Anything that is served with it becomes less important! This is the reason why the mole is called a national dish, despite being merely a sauce.
What Makes Mole Sauce What it Is
For those with a penchant for cooking, mole sauce has many types and varieties, and with the availability of all ingredients, it can be cooked at home as per one’s liking. Culinary experts instruct its cooking and advise reading these blogs on how to prepare mole sauce just right. All mole preparations begin with one or the other kind of chilli pepper. Other ingredients may also include black pepper, cumin, cloves, tomatoes, sesame seeds, dried fruits, etc. Some types of mole sauces such as mole poblano and mole almendrado have an average of 20 and 26 ingredients respectively. Chocolate is also sometimes added towards the end of the preparation process. It can often be unsweetened chocolate.
Fifty Shades of Mole!
The ingredients of a mole can largely be categorized into five distinct groups: chillies, sour (tomatillos), sweet (including dried fruits and sugar), spices, and thickeners (such as nuts and tortillas). These ingredients are first of all roasted and ground to make a fine powder or paste. Following this, the powder or paste is mixed well with water, or sometimes even broth, and brought to boil until it becomes pungent and turns very thick in consistency. There are many ways to serve the different kinds of mole sauces. It is primarily served over something instead of being eaten alone. It could be poured over turkey, chicken, lamb, mutton and pork.
Readymade Products to Your Rescue!
Although this is one suggested way of preparing mole sauce at home, or while cooking a dish, some mole sauces and pastes can also be prepared ahead of time for purposes of convenience. They are sold in packages or by the kilogram in the market by various brands and companies. The Dona Maria Mole sauce and Dona Maria Adobo sauce are two popular products truly authentic in their taste. The former is the signature red mole sauce, meant to be served with chicken or meat to lend a spicy flavour. The latter is both sweet and spicy, and carries the authentic Mexican taste. These pre-packaged products tend to save one the hassle of putting together all the motely ingredients and preparing the sauce, and also last longer under refrigeration, saving both time and effort.