Chicken in almond mole: Pollo en mole almendrado

articles Food & Cuisine Recipes

Karen Hursh Graber

Mexican Kitchen

This recipe uses more almonds than most and eliminates the chocolate. It is a Oaxaca style, rather than a Puebla style, almendrado.


For the chicken:

      • 1 3-4 pound chicken, cut into serving pieces
      • salt and pepper
      • corn oil for sautéing
      • 4 cloves garlic, peeled
      • 1 medium onion, peeled, halved, and stuck with 2 whole cloves
      • 1 piece cinnamon stick
      • salt to taste

For the mole:

      • 4 tablespoons corn oil, divided use
      • 3 ancho chiles, seeded, deveined, and soaked in hot water until soft
      • 4 plum tomatoes, roasted and peeled
      • 4 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped
      • 1 medium onion, peeled and chopped
      • 1 cup almonds, peeled and ground
      • 6 black peppercorns
      • 2 whole cloves
      • 1 3 inch piece cinnamon
      • ½ bolillo or French roll, torn into pieces
      • 1 small, ripe plantain, peeled and cut into 1 inch pieces
      • Sugar and salt to taste


Season the chicken with salt and pepper. Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in a heavy skillet and sauté the chicken pieces until browned on both sides.

Place the chicken pieces in a stockpot; add the garlic, onion with cloves, cinnamon stick and water to cover. Bring to a boil, lower flame and cook, covered, until the chicken is cooked through. (Remove breast pieces first, since they take less time to cook through.)

Strain and reserve broth. Set chicken pieces aside.

To make the mole sauce, heat the remaining oil in a large, heavy bottomed pot; add the chiles, tomatoes, garlic, onion, almonds, peppercorns, cloves, cinnamon, roll, and plantain. Cook, stirring often to prevent sticking, until the onions have softened and the tomatoes have rendered their juices.

Place the contents of the pot in a blender with enough of the reserved chicken broth to allow the blender blades to move. Puree until smooth.

Pour the puree into the pot and add chicken broth, a little at a time, until the desired consistency is reached. (Most mole sauces are about as thick as heavy cream.)

Return the chicken to the pot and heat through. Serve garnished with whole peeled almonds if desired. Serves 6.

Published or Updated on: October 1, 2008 by Karen Hursh Graber © 2009
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