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Oaxacan Green Mole with Chicken

4 Servings

1 hour 10 minutes

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When we think of mole, we most often think of mahogany-colored mole negro, flavored with chocolate, dried chilies and nuts. But as we learned from Oaxaca chef Olga Cabrera Oropeza, there is a wide variety of moles, each with a unique character. Mole verde—or green mole—traditionally is made with pork and gets its bright, fresh flavor from a blend of fresh chilies, tomatillos and herbs. For our version, we opted for quicker-cooking but equally tasty chicken thighs, and we sought out supermarket substitutes for hard-to-find epazote and hoja santa, two herbs that are standard ingredients in Mexico (we mimicked their flavors with mint and fennel seeds). Oaxacans thicken this stew-like soup with masa, the corn dough used to make tortillas and tamales. For ease, we opted to use what Oropeza showed us was the second best option: corn tortillas softened in liquid then blended until smooth.

4

Servings

Tip

Don't brown the vegetables too darkly under the broiler. Light charring provides complexity, but too much will muddle the fresh herbal notes.

1 hour 10 minutes

Ingredients

  • 2

    pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs, trimmed and halved

  • Kosher salt and ground black pepper

Directions

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Reviews
MARY C.
April 10, 2023
Surprisingly good
We are all used to heavy moles. This was light and extremely flavorful. Definitely a repeat recipe now!
Anita E.
February 28, 2023
Delicious
Made this for the family the other night and everyone loved it! I agree with some of the other reviews that there is more sauce than meat and vegetables. I will increase the meat and vegetables the next time I make it.
Shirley T.
February 13, 2023
Substitutions
I can buy epazote & hola santa here in Arizona. What quantity do you recommend in substituting for the mint & fennel seeds? Thanks. The recipe sounds delicious.
Cody J.
August 23, 2023
Fast and Delicious
Great fresh and hearty weeknight recipe! Also served to picky eaters prior to adding the cilantro, mint, parsley, etc puree. 10/10 a fixture moving forward at our house.
Patrick N.

I'm not sure if I am missing something but I will ask. Why use the corn tortillas? Masa is not hard to get.

Janelle C.

Hi Patrick,

To answer your question, corn tortillas would be easier to source than masa as noted in the recipe description.

Best,
The Milk Street Team

Barbara B.

Do you have a suggestion for how much masa?

Lynn C.

Hi Barbara -

We didn't test this version of the recipe with masa but we would probably recommend 1/4-1/2 cup masa mixed in with the broth in Step 1.

Best,
The Milk Street Team

Lynn C.

Hi Barbara -

We didn't test this version of the recipe with masa but we would probably recommend 1/4-1/2 cup masa mixed in with the broth in Step 1.

Best,
The Milk Street Team

Barbara B.

Do you have a suggestion for how much masa?

Lynn C.

Hi Barbara -

We didn't test this version of the recipe with masa but we would probably recommend 1/4-1/2 cup masa mixed in with the broth in Step 1.

Best,
The Milk Street Team

Lynn C.

Hi Barbara -

We didn't test this version of the recipe with masa but we would probably recommend 1/4-1/2 cup masa mixed in with the broth in Step 1.

Best,
The Milk Street Team

Gary B.

My old blender is no match for the one used on the TV show, so I used my average-sized food processor. It took additional effort and patience, but the dish turned out well. I'll make this dish again and again.

Kimberly N.

If we wanted to substitute masa for the corn tortillas, how much and when do you add it? How much broth or liquid do you still want to include?

Jonathan L.

This is a wonderful meal! I try to cook something different every night (in retirement), but we like this so much I"m on my third go-round. We can get masa easily, but I've just stuck to the recipe and it's great.

Scott P.

This is very delicious. The layered flavors of cilantro, mint, cumin, and fennel sound fussy but the result is heavenly. I paired it with white rice.

Jenna H.

I discovered this recipe last summer when the tomatillos from my garden were coming in like crazy. When this years tomatillos were ripening this was one of the first things I made. a About half of the ingredients come from my garden which I think makes the layers of flavors all the more outstanding. Don’t be scared of the mint (I was, but it adds something special). My brother in law said it’s one of the best soups he’s had, and we eat a lot of soup!

Linda M.

I recently made this and found it delicious. The only thing I added was some lime juice on top of each serving. I will likely make this again.