Tex-Mex Mole
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Recipe courtesy of Malena Gonzalez-Cid

Malena’s Tex-Mex Mole

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  • Level: Intermediate
  • Total: 2 hr
  • Active: 1 hr
  • Yield: 8 servings
As the Executive Director of Centro Cultural Aztlan and producer of the center's annual mole competition for the last 16 years, I have the distinct pleasure of tasting mole from at least 30 different moleros at this yearly event.  For this recipe, I only use pecans from the most current harvest (prior fall) to make sure I don't end up with a rancid selection and ruin the entire recipe. We are fortunate that San Antonio, Texas has a large variety of pecan trees. We harvest our own pecans in the fall, and my dad shells a good amount and freezes them for all our baking and cooking needs. This is what lends our mole its unique flavor.



  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Remove the stems, seeds and veins from the ancho and guajillo chiles. In a pan over medium-high heat, add 3 tablespoons of the oil and sauté the chiles for about 20 seconds on both sides. Transfer them to a pot with 3 quarts of very hot water. Sauté the tomatoes, tomatillo and garlic in the same pan until lightly roasted and fragrant, about 1 minute for the garlic and 2 to 3 minutes for the tomatoes and tomatillo; add them to the water with the chiles. Allow them to steep while you prepare the other ingredients, at least 30 minutes. 
  3. Roast the pecans on a baking sheet for about 5 minutes. Allow them to cool, then process to a fine consistency in a food processor; set aside. 
  4. Toast the bolillo in the oven directly on the rack until toasted and golden, 6 to 8 minutes. Let cool, then tear into large pieces and process in a food processor to make fine breadcrumbs; set aside (there should be about 3/4 cup of breadcrumbs). 
  5. Toast the sesame seeds in a small pan over medium heat, stirring, until just beginning to turn light brown, about 3 minutes. Grind in a coffee or spice grinder until finely ground; set aside.  
  6. In an 8-quart pot, add the remaining 3 tablespoons oil and set over medium heat. 
  7. Drain the water from the chiles, tomatoes and garlic and begin blending them in a blender on high speed in batches. Add 1 cup of chicken broth to each batch, then pour into the 8-quart pot. Raise the heat to medium high and start adding the other ingredients. First, add the peanut butter and stir until it is well blended into the mixture. Next, add the ground sesame seeds and stir until you work out any lumps that may be visible in the sauce. Do the same with the finely ground pecans and chocolate tablet. Add the breadcrumbs, 1 teaspoon black pepper, cumin, cocoa, sugar, chopped chocolate and bouillon. Cook, stirring and working out any lumps that may be visible in the sauce. If you think the sauce is too thick, add another cup of broth. Bring down the heat to medium low while you start to sear the chicken.  
  8. Heat a griddle (the type you use for pancakes) or large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat until hot. Sprinkle the chicken with salt and pepper and sear on the griddle for 6 to 8 minutes per side. 
  9. Add the chicken to the sauce and allow to simmer until the chicken is very tender and the mole is thickened, 45 to 60 minutes. Taste occasionally for more salt or sweetness to your liking.  
  10. I like to accompany my mole with homemade Tex-Mex rice and bolillos. Enjoy. Buen provecho!