Writer Silvia Martinez takes us on a culinary quest for mole:
Popular legend had it that the nuns at the Convent of Santa Rosa in Puebla prayed for help in providing a meal to the visiting archbishop. After praying about it they threw everything in-spices, fruit, nuts, chiles, vegetables, chocolate- and it was a hit.
The most famous moles come from Puebla and Oaxaca. In Puebla, mole poblano, as it is known, is a rich, dark, spicy, sweet, sour, nutty, and savory sauce that can be made from upwards of 30 ingredients like onions, tomatoes, and chiles, but also raisins, almonds, fennel seeds, tortillas, and chocolate to name a few. Traditionally it is served with turkey, but commonly it’s served over chicken or even vegetables. Certain mole types are served with fish. In Oaxaca, at least six distinct types of mole are identified mostly by their colors-such as colorado or red and verde or green-which reflect differences in ingredients.
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