13 May 2009

South of the border: Chocolate? For Dinner????

If you have never had mole (pronounced mo-lay), you have GOT to try it.

It may seem a little strange. It has a slightly sweet flavor. The cocoa powder gave us a little pause.. as my daughter and I figured it.. "Chocolate? For Dinner???? We gotta try this!"

It easily served us for the night with enough left over for a midnight snack I couldn't resist during mid-terms and dinner for another night as well. I don't suggest freezing, the sauce would loose it's consistency, but it holds well in the fridge for 3-4 days if stored properly.
Chicken Mole and Spanish Rice

(I didn't count the spices and pantry items in the prices.

They are one time investments used pennies at a time.)

Chicken Mole
2 T flour
-- 1/4 t salt -- 1/4 t pepper
1 lb chicken (3 lb IQF/$6 = 1 lb/$2)
1 T olive oil

1 lg onion sliced in thin moons (currently 50¢)
2t (or 4 cloves) minced garlic (I use jarred so pennies)
2 bell peppers (currently 50¢/ea = $1)

1 1/2 c (or one can) diced tomatoes (72¢)
1 T cocoa powder -- 2 1/2 t brown sugar
2 t red wine vinegar -- 1 t ground ginger
1 t cinnamon -- 1/8 t allspice
1/4 t salt -- 1/4 t pepper

1 1/2 t cornstarch in a slurry
12 tortillas (@ 40 for $4= 12¢)

Total $4.32
  • Combine 1st three ingredients on wax paper & dredge chicken.
  • Brown in oil.
  • Cook onions and garlic till tender then add peppers until tender.
  • Stir in tomatoes, 3/4 c water, and 8 following spices and vinegar.
  • Bring to a simmer.
  • Thinly slice chicken and return to pot.
  • Cover and simmer until chicken is cooked, about 15 min.
  • Put tortillas in oven, wrapped in foil at 400 to soften (about 5 minutes) .
  • Add slurry (corn starch dissolved into a splash of tap water).
  • Return to simmer, stirring to thicken, (about 1 minute).
  • Serve along side sauce with tortillas.
Spanish Rice

1T oil
1/2 t crushed red pepper
2c rice - I prefer medium grain (approx. 50¢)
1/4c or 2 cubes chicken tomato bouillon (approx. 50¢)
Less than $1 for 4 servings

  • Heat oil over medium heat,
  • Add crushed pepper to release flavor into oil
  • Add the rice and stir occasionally until browned lightly.
  • Add bouillon and salt to taste.
  • From here cook as you would any rice. I do mine in the cooker. NOTE: once browned the rice may need more water than it normally would. Just keep a cup or two of water heated in the microwave in case you need to add to the cooking rice.
Serve as a side to the mole.

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