Center for Foods of the Americas The Culinary Institute of America Center for Foods of the Americas

Mole PoblanoMole Poblano

Yield: 16 portions






  1. Season the turkey with salt. Heat the lard in a large sauté pan and working in batches, brown the turkey pieces on all sides. Remove the turkey and set aside. Reserve the lard to fry the chiles.
  2. Place the turkey pieces in a stockpot with onion, garlic and enough water to cover. Simmer until the turkey pieces are cooked through, about 45 minutes.Strain the broth,  reserve the turkey in the warm broth.
  3. Fry the chiles on both sides, in the reserved lard over medium heat until they begin to blister and change color. Remove chiles and soak in hot water for 15 minutes. Drain the chiles and transfer to a blender adding water, as needed, to form a smooth puree. Pass through a small mesh sieve and set aside.
  4. Fry the tomatoes and tomatillos in remaining lard.
  5. Using 4 tablespoons of the lard from the chiles, fry the raisins until they plump and change color. Drain the raisins in a colander and repeat the process with the almonds, pumpkin seeds, tortillas, bread, reserved chile seeds, and sesame seeds. Add more lard, as needed, to fry the remaining ingredients.
  6. Dry-roast the onion and garlic in a comal or dry skillet over medium heat. Remove the garlic when the papery skin begins to brown and discard the skin. Keep turning the vegetables until soft and blackened on all sides. Remove from heat and set aside.
  7. In a small skillet, fry in lard the black pepper, cloves, cinnamon, coriander and anise seeds until fragrant over medium low heat. Remove from heat and set aside.
  8. Blend the dry-roasted vegetables, spices and fried ingredients in batches adding fresh water, as needed, to form a smooth puree. Strain through a small mesh sieve and set aside.
  9. Heat 3 tablespoons of oil in a Dutch oven over medium heat. Fry the chile puree, stirring frequently, until it changes color and you can see the bottom of the pan when scraped with a wooden spoon, about 8 minutes. Add the strained vegetable and spice mixture. Reduce heat to a simmer and stir occasionally until the mole thickens, about 1 hour.
  10. Add approximately 2 cups of turkey broth and continue cooking for 30 minutes. The mole should coat the back of a spoon. Add the chocolate pieces and continue cooking, about 10 minutes. Season again to taste with salt and chocolate.
  11. Remove the skin from the browned turkey pieces.
  12. Serve the turkey with a generous amount of Mole poblano. Garnish with toasted sesame seeds and serve with warm corn tortillas and the tamales blancos.

Note: Mole poblano will keep for up to two weeks, refrigerated, but must be re-heated and diluted with water (to prevent saltiness) every three days. Mole poblano will keep for up to two months frozen.