This recipe is a lot of work, but well worth it. I love the rich flavor of the mole sauce and it is different than anything I have ever tasted. The main base of the mole sauce is pumpkin seeds, which is unusual, but they give a lot of flavor to the dish. You can find raw pumpkin seeds at your Whole Foods market or you can order them online. I think this would also be really yummy with pork, but it's traditionally served with chicken. For a side dish I made my Spanish Rice (except I added black beans instead of peas) and then of course I had to make salsa and guacamole to go along with it.
This recipe is from the book "Authentic Mexican" by Rick Bayless (a must have for those of you who like traditional Mexican food!)
1 Cup Pumpkin Seeds, hulled and unroasted
13 Ounce Can Tomatillos, drained
3 Serrano Chilies, seeded
5 Large Romaine Lettuce Leaves
1/2 Medium Onion, roughly chopped
3 Cloves Garlic, peeled and roughly chopped
3 Large Sprigs Fresh Cilantro
1/4 Teaspoon Cumin Seeds
6 Black Peppercorns
3/4 Inch Cinnamon Stick
1 1/2 Tablespoons Vegetable Oil
1/2 Teaspoon Salt
4 Chicken Breasts, bone in
1 Small Onion
1/2 Teaspoon Salt
Start by cooking the chicken: Bring 6 cups water and the salt to a boil in a large saucepan with the diced onion. Add the chicken breasts, skim off any grayish foam that rises during the first minute of simmering, partially cover and simmer over medium heat for about 12 minutes, until the breasts are barely done. Let chicken cool in the broth. Remove, strain the broth, then spoon off all the fat that rises to the top.
Mole: Heat a medium skillet over medium-low for several minutes, then pour in the pumpkin seeds in a single layer. When the first one pops, stir them constantly for 4-5 minutes, until all have toasted and popped. Cool completely. In batches, pulverize the seeds in a spice grinder. sift through a medium-mesh sieve, then stir in 1 cup of the broth.
Drain canned tomatillos and place in the blender or food processor with the raw chiles. Tear the lettuce leaves into rough pieces and add to the tomatillows along with the onion,garlic and cilantro. Pulverize the spices in a mortar or spice grinder, add to the blender then process until smooth.
Heat the vegetable oil in a large heavy saucepan over medium. When hot, add the pumpkin seed broth mixture and stir constantly as it thickens and darkens, 4-5 minutes. Add the vegetable puree and stir a few minutes longer, until very thick.
Stir in 2 cup of the chicken broth, reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer, partially covered, for about 30 minutes. Season with the salt and, if necessary, thin to a light consistency with a little broth.
Just before serving, add the chkicken to the simmering sauce. When heated through, remove the breasts to a warm serving platter, spoon the sauce over them and garnish with a sprig of cilantro.