Cooking with Jane: Mexican Mole Chicken

Great tasty smoky Mexican midweek meal delicious with rice we had ours with chilli and lime rice but other flavours or just plain rice work just as well. Don’t be put off by adding the raisins or chocolate they are simply there to add depth of flavour you never know they are there!

What you need: feeds 4

2 ancho dried chillies or 1 red pepper
2 tablespoons olive oil
8 boneless-chicken thighs, skins removed
2 onions
Finely chopped
2 teaspoon ground cumin
1½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
3 garlic cloves minced or grated
50g raisins or sultanas
2 tablespoons smooth peanut butter
2 teaspoons chipotle paste
400g can chopped tomato
25g dark chocolate

You will also need a food processor or stick blender and a large saucepan with lid.

How to make:

1. Put the chillies in a small bowl and add enough boiling water to just cover. Leave to soften for 20 mins. If you can’t find anchos, grill a red pepper until it is really blackened and soft. Cool them, then peel and use as needed in the recipe, adding 1 tsp smoked paprika and a little extra chipotle to re-create the sweet, smoky flavour.
2. Heat the oil in the saucepan, season the chicken, then seal on all sides. You may have to do this in batches so you don’t overcrowd the dish. Remove to a plate. (Photo 1 & 2).
3. Add the onions to the dish and cook for 5 mins until softened. (Photo 3). Add the spices and cook for 1 min until aromatic.
4. Remove the chillies from their soaking liquid, reserving the liquid, and discard the stalks and seeds. Put in a food processor with 4 tablespoons of the soaking liquid, the garlic, raisins, peanut butter, chipotle paste. (Photo 4 & 5). Whizz to a paste, and add to the saucepan. Mix the paste well into the onions.
5. Add the tomatoes and 400ml water (fill up the tomato can and swirl to get all the tomato bits out). Return the chicken to the dish and season. Cover with a lid and simmer, stirring occasionally, for 1 hrs. (Photo 6).
6. Remove the chicken pieces to a plate. Using 2 forks, shred the meat. (Photo 7). Return the chicken to the sauce, add the chocolate and continue cooking, uncovered, for 30 mins more (Photo8). If the sauce looks like it’s getting a little too thick, add some water. (Photo 9).
7. Serve with rice of your choice and enjoy! (Photo 10).

For more information on Jane Cooper and other recipes visit the Cooking with Jane page here.