Cheri's Mole Sauce

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Recipe for Cheri's Mole Sauce. Use this sauce when making tamales -- although it's equally good served over chicken.


  • 10 ancho (dried poblano) chiles
  • 6 dried pasilla chiles
  • 4 dried gualjillo chiles
  • 1 canned chipotle pepper
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon coriander seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon anise seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried cloves
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/3 cup slivered almonds
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 6 garlic cloves
  • 3 fresh tomatoes, quartered
  • 1/4 cup raisins
  • 2-3 cups chicken or vegetable stock
  • 1 corn tortilla
  • 4 ounces Mexican chocolate, such as Ibarra or Abuelita brands


  1. Makes about 5 Cups
  2. Bring about a quart of water to a boil in a medium pot. Seed and rinse the chiles, and add to the boiling water. Remove from heat and let stand for about a half hour to soften.
  3. Heat a dry skillet over medium heat and roast the coriander seeds, anise seeds, cumin seeds, cinnamon, dried cloves and black pepper until toasted and fragrant -- about 2 minutes, stirring frequently -- do not burn the spices! Transfer to a spice mill, coffee grinder or mortar and grind till fine.
  4. Toast the almonds in the same pan. Set aside.
  5. Add olive oil to skillet and saute garlic, onion and tomatoes for about 10 minutes, until onion is starting to brown. Put the tomato mixture, chiles, raisins, almonds and corn tortilla in a food processor or blender and puree until smooth -- you may have to do this in batches. Add stock as needed to give the sauce the consistency of a thin paste. Add the sauce back to the skillet and simmer for about 10 minutes. Stir in the chocolate and cook, stirring constantly, until the chocolate is melted. Add more stock, if necessary, to achieve the proper consistency.