I have been meaning to get back to this but the holidays and work have kept me quite busy. To start the new year I decided to focus on molé. My first interest in molé started from working in a Mexican restaurant. It was further piqued by watching Rick Bayliss talk about it before he won Top Chef Masters. My trip last winter to Oaxaca for Day of the Dead was also an inspirational journey. In December I actually made my first to molé sauces at home and then decided it was worth the devotion of a month. For those just joining us here on the blog I offer you a glimpse into my thinking. Each month I focus on one dish to eat and learn about. It is part a journey to eat, which I love to do. It is also a way to get me back to cooking and to develop more of a base understanding that will allow me to experiment with more confidence in the future.
Molé can be called many things. I prefer to thing of it as a cross between a sauce and a stew. They are incredibly complex in flavor and technique using typically over 20 different ingredients. The blending of these flavors helps to create a dish that is at the same time sweet, spicy. The flavor is quite complex and really difficult to describe or compare to anything else. There are a few places in Mexico that claim to have invented it the most notable being Puebla and Oaxaca (sometimes called the Land of the Seven Moles.) Finding Molé in Philadelphia shouldn't be to difficult because of the large Pueblan population. In am planning to eat out quite a bit. I will also be cooking at home using a variety of recipes and trying to get a few recipes from some of the people I know who are Mexican. I will also taste test a few products that are available on the market for the home cook who does not have the time or doesn't want to dirty the dishes necessary to make it from scratch. During the month I will be also conducting a few interviews with some chefs who are not only doing great Mexican food , but have experience in making molés. I look forward to giving you all a great month of blog post to read and getting ready for a truly gluttonous February.
The Skinny Fat Kid