Tap the rich, complex flavors of green mole

Liven up menus with two versatile Mexican sauces
BETSY REYNOLDS BATESON

Recipes


Mexican cuisine is filled with many sauces called moles ( mo-lays). They come in many colors and flavors. The common vein is texture ( mole means soft ― mashed or puréed ― as in guacamole). The ones known as green moles are fresh chili-and-vegetable mixtures that are simmered. Two particularly delicious traditional examples are mole verde from Oaxaca (in southern Mexico) and pipián verde.

The Oaxacan mole uses epazote, an herb found dried at most Mexican-food markets. This mole gets its body from lima beans and masa. The pipián verde's base is peanuts, pumpkin seeds, and tomatillos.

Both sauces go well with pork, chicken, or fish ― even over enchiladas.