Leftover Turkey Mole
Want a leftover holiday turkey recipe so good it'll make you forget the original dish? Whether you need to get that half a Thanksgiving turkey out of your freezer to make room for Christmas cookie dough, or you're planning ahead for what to do with the extra Christmas turkey, I give you ...Red Mole Poblano (my way with the Mexican ingredients I have left here in Italy)
Ingredients this time around (having made adjustments to fit my pantry):
12 guajillo peppers, seeded (keep the seeds)
8 pasilla peppers
1 big chipotle in adobo
3 large slices of stale white bread
1 sm. white onion
4 garlic cloves
1/2 cup sesame seeds
1/4 cup walnuts
1/4 cup peanuts
1/4 cup almonds
10 cups chicken broth
1 20 oz jar tomato puree
1 sm tomatillo
1/4 tsp allspice
1/2 tsp black pepper
1/2 tsp Mexican cinnamon
1 tsp Mexican oregano
1/2 tsp dried thyme
1/2 large green platano, peeled and cut into 1 inch slices
1 tsp plus 1/4 cup vegetable oil or lard
a 3-oz. disk of mexican chocolate
3 dried avocado leaves
1 tbsp salt
1/4 cup sugar
So how's that for an ingredients list?
The toasting: Place a large cast-iron skillet on a high flame and slice open the peppers, unfolding them as flat as you can. Dry roast each pepper for about 10 seconds on each side until you see the skin blistering and a wisp or two of smoke. Place each roasted pepper into a bowl of hot water and set aside. Place a piece of aluminum foil on the hot skillet and lay the whole, unpeeled garlic cloves on as well as the peeled and thickly sliced onion. Roast until very dark, about 5 minutes on each side. Remove and let cool. Now, toast the pepper seeds until they are jet black, no really! Do it because this time around I only got them to mahogany brown and the mole color and flavor were a bit more pallid than usual. See medium brown photo. Remove, cool and buzz to a powder in a spice grinder. Now, char the bread slices. You may choose to do this on the dry skillet or on that burnt toast setting on your toaster. You know the one you always thought was ridiculous, 'cause why would anyone voluntarily burn toast? Well, now you know why. It makes your mole rich and deep looking and tasting. Then toast the sesame seeds by shaking the skillet over the flame intil the seeds are dark brown and fragrant. Set aside. Now toast the nuts. Place them all on the skillet and stir frequently to get a rich and even deep brown color. Remove into the same bowl as the sesame seeds. Add a teaspoon of oil to the skillet and fry the plantain on the 2 flat sides along with the tomatillo until medium brown.
The pureeing: Place the soaked pasillas and guajillos along with the chipotle into the bowl of a food processor and puree adding up to 3/4 cup of the turkey stock to allow everything to whizz freely. Pour mix out into a mixing bowl add the cground chile seeds and set aside. Place the roasted onion slices and the now peeled, roasted garlic in the unwashed food processor, whizz for a second or two then add the roasted nuts. Process until the nuts are almost paste then add the tomatoes and process for another 15 seconds to combine everything. Pour out in to a different mixing bowl. Now put the bread, spices, tomatillo and platano into the unwashed processor and puree to a smooth paste with up to 3/4 cup of stock to keep things moving. Once you have a smoothe texture, pour out into a third bowl.
The cauldron:Now it's time to add your three purees into the big mole pot! You're almost there and at least most of your work is over. Pour 1/4 cup of oil or lard into the bottom of a large, heavy pot and heat over medium-high then add the pepper puree and allow to sear noisily while you scrape down the sides and bottom to keep the purtee from burning. Allow to darken to a rich red-brown before adding the tomato-nut puree. Stir to combine and let reduce for about 5 minutes before you add the bread, platano puree. Now, raise to temperature to the highest setting and pour in what remains of the stock. Stir and allow to come to a simmer. Add the chocolate and avocado leaves. Leave at the simmer for 1 hour and 1/2 returning periodically to stir and scrape the sides. to make sure there's no hot point burning. At the end of those 90 minutes, you should have a lovely fragrant, rich dark ruddy red-brown bubbling cauldron. Take out the avocado leaves and add the salt and sugar. Serve over warmed leftover turkey with corn tortillas and a cold beer. Music to slosh leftover turkey in loads of rich brown sauce by: "Thirty Drity Birds", my favorite song by Red Hot Chili Peppers.