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Mole – the specialty black sauce of Oaxaca

Victoria based food writer Maryanne Carmack takes her perspective on the road and researches the traditional mexican “Mole” sauce at Miguel Angel Restaurant & Bar – Bucerias, Mexico where they have been serving typical, authentic Oaxacan food for the past 15 years…

The misinformed refer to mole (pronounced MOH-lay) as “that Mexican chocolate sauce”.  Although chocolate is an ingredient in some moles – if cooked properly, only a mysterious hint remains when the sauce is served over turkey, chicken, seafood, pork or roasted vegetables.  There are very few restaurants that make mole from scratch.  The reason lies in preparation.  This sauce is an all-day process because the 30+ ingredients need to be ground, mixed and blended by hand.  There are no shortcuts or quick versions.  Chilies must be roasted and seeds toasted.  The ingredients must be carefully blended and meticulously strained to ensure a smooth and creamy sauce.  There is no definitive mole, but rather endless versions that differ from family to family, from region to region.  Today, Oaxaca has the reputation as Mexico’s best state for mole. 

Linda, head chef at  Miguel Angel makes her own authentic mole sauce, it takes the entire day to make and she is the only one in town that makes it.

 Linda (left)  is prepping shrimp while her partner is cutting up Mahi Mahi for dinner service

Every morning a fisherman drops off a load of fresh local seafood

Jesus – kitchen parrot that keeps everyone company .

Oaxaca Tomales – chicken spiced with their regional specialty “black mole” sauce (left) & chicken with salsa verde (right). Tomales typical of Oaxaca are wrapped in banana leaves not corn husks giving them a richer and tastier flavor. 
Linda & me in the kitchen – notice the Canadian flag hanging above!  They love Canadians here!!

-MC

About Maryanne Carmack…

Maryanne was the first person scouted for our 2011 expansion. In my opinion she’s a perfect fit. Not only does she truly know food (and wine), but she has a genuine passion for being active in the community and for promoting environmental awareness through her writing and photography. Her work is engaging, relevant, and fun. I’m personally very excited to have Maryanne on board! Please click “Contact” above and let us know what you think of her work.

-PP

You can see more of Maryanne’s work here: http://www.maryannecarmack.com – be sure to check out the food and wine gallery!

20 Responses to Mole – the specialty black sauce of Oaxaca

  • Great article, the photography is an excellent addition that entices the reader to want to know more! If you actually have the recipe it is now on my must try list. Thanks for the great article Maryanne.

  • Very interesting read, I grew up with most of my family in Mexico and am familiar with Mole but never knew it was such a process, ill be checking the site regularly 😉

  • Fantastic article. A new and unique insight into Mexico and their food. Beautiful photography to give you a real feeling of being there. Thanks!

  • Very interesting article! I really enjoyed reading it! The pictures are beautiful and add a lot to the piece ! I had no idea that there was so much that went into making a mole sauce! I think that Maryanne is a great addition to this site and I hope to see more from her in the future!

  • A great piece to read: it is interesting and educational at the same time. And the photography is as colourful as is Mexico. It is good to see that Culture Vulture is taking ‘culture’ seriously; I hope to see more articles by this writer/photographer.

  • Sounds yummy! The pictures are amazing, so bright, it’s a great paring with the article. Way to go Maryanne!!

  • Maryanne Carmack’s article was great I especially loved the photography!! Hope to see more from her!!!!

  • Great article! I can almost taste the authenticity of the food in the description. The beautiful photos capture the atmosphere of Mexico. Looking forward to the next!

  • Well written and great photos. Maryanne’s passion for food and life are obvious. Definitely a great addition to your publication.

  • Great article and beautiful photos! I look forward to hearing more from Maryanne in the future.

  • Can’t wait to try chicken mole next time I visit Mexico. Great article, very informative and beautiful pictures.
    Linda

  • Sounds yummier than I thought! Can’t wait to see where you go next! We could use some refreshing “ins” of some local eateries..just an idea.

  • What a great example of how Oaxaca’s cuisine varies. Oaxaca tamales using banana leaves rather than corn husks are a subtle but distinctive difference. The very thought of tasting fresh verde and mole tamales intrigue me to further explore and taste Oaxacan cuisine. Maryanne I just booked my tickets…..

  • What a fantastic article and the pictures are beautiful 🙂 Maryanne is such a wonderful addition, i look forward to reading more of her articles and seeing more of her beautiful pictures in the future!

  • Such a great article reflecting local and authentic Mexican ingredients, and the beautiful photos that show such genuine Mexican life! Can’t wait too see more articles from Maryanne.

  • This article is very intriguing as I knew practically nothing about the complexities of creating Mole Sauce. The pictures were lovely and enticing. Maryanne is a terrific addition to Culture Vulture. Looking forward to seeing more 🙂

  • Well, you left my mouth watering. The photography took me right into the “Miguel Angel Restaurant & Bar. When in Bucerias, would definatly go there for some Mole Sauce. Thank you for your informative article Maryanne.

  • Fantastic article! The photos and the description gives you the sense of beeing there too!
    Can’t wait to read the next one!!!