Mexican mole is a sauce with a big, complicated personality.
With an elaborate combination of toasting, grinding + slow-simmering upwards of 40 ingredients, the flavors of mole are unsurprisingly deep + complex. Made with dried chiles, aromatic veg, spices + herbs, often bittersweet chocolate or cocoa, and ground nuts or seeds to thicken (but also sometimes stale bread, plantain or tomatoes), it is an extraordinary blend of earthy, smoky, sweet and spicy.
Some believe mole comes from the Spanish word moler, meaning “to grind.” Others believe it’s derived from the Nahuatl, or Aztec, word molli, meaning “mixture” or simply, “sauce.” Seven classic variations of the sauce reign in the southern Mexican state of Oaxaca, where mole is said to be the culinary symbol.
For us, it’s come to say Thanksgiving.