Flavours of Mexico > A Guide to the 7 Moles of Mexico
Mexican cuisine is perhaps most popularly known for its signature tacos, guacamole and salsa. However, there is one dish that surpasses all others when it comes to authentic Mexican cooking that carries a certain mystique – the mole (‘MO-LAY’). But what is a mole, you might ask? This signature staple is a rich, flavourful sauce or mixture ranging in flavours from sweet to spicy, widely used in Mexican dishes and contains between 20 to 40 Ingredients from chilies and sesame seeds to dried fruits, nuts, and chocolate.
Recipes vary widely from region to region and travellers visiting Mexico can savour seven traditional moles from the southern region of Oaxaca and the highlands of south-central Mexico in Puebla.
Everything you wanted to know about mole, but were afraid to ask...
It is a sweet red mole commonly used in dishes from Oaxaca, that contains the same base as the Mole Poblano, but includes mashed sweet plantains to make a thicker sauce.
It is a Oaxacan staple, made with yellow chilies and contains no chocolate. Its yellow colour and texture makes it similar in appearance to an Indian curry.
It is another popular mixture from Oaxaca, which is a combination of sweet (with its fruity ingredients of pineapple and plantain), and bitter flavours (with chorizo, tomatoes, and ancho chilies).
It is one of the most popular moles that hail from the Oaxaca region, and is the ultimate sweet and spicy combination. This version relies heavily on chocolate and spices like cloves, cinnamon and cumin along with the herb known as hoja santa (piper auritum), a key local ingredient with a fragrant, licorice taste.
It is an exotically-flavoured mole from Oaxaca and is the perfect complement for braised dishes, as its base is derived from a rich, homemade beef stock.
It is one of the most popular variations of mole. This recipe originates in Puebla and is a beloved national dish with more than 30 ingredients including chilis, dried fruit and nuts. In Oaxaca, the Rojo (Red) mole is made with almonds, olives and capers.
This mole, which can be found in Oaxacan cuisine, gains its green vibrant colour and flavour from pungent ingredients such as pumpkin seeds, cilantro, tomatillos, and jalapenos.
Thanks to the Mexico Tourism Board for their kind assistance
Mole Negro and Coloradito Photos: Real De Oaxaca Restaurant
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