But Sugar is Sweeter

Chipotle Almond Chicken Mole

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If you’re looking for a change from your ordinary weeknight menus – look no further!  When I first saw this recipe, I knew I wanted to make it because it would really add a lot of interest to our normal weeknight menu rotation.  While being very unique, it doesn’t call for a bunch of crazy ingredients – you could find everything at Walmart if you wanted.   I was a little worried John wouldn’t like this since it’s not your typical American fare, but to my surprise I think he liked it even more than me!  It has a smokey flavor, and yet is a little bit creamy because of the ground almonds used in the sauce.

When planning meals for the week, I put  Spicy Bean Burritos on the menu, because they also call for chipotle peppers in adobe sauce, and that way I knew the can I bought wouldn’t go to waste.  If you like your dinner on the spicy side, then use the entire chipotle pepper.   Personally, I like just a hint of heat, so I removed the seeds from the 2 peppers I used, which really cuts down on the spice.  I also happened to have some corn tortillas left over from Chicken Enchiladas , so that helped to cut down on ingredients to buy (corn tortillas last forever, or so it seems).

The recipe makes a lot of sauce, so it could really accomodate anywhere from 2 – 4 large chicken breasts.  If you don’t want to make the whole batch, just freeze the sauce and use it over some leftover chicken at a later point in time.  We ate it plain, but I’m planning on serving the leftovers over some cilantro-lime rice, yummmm.

Chipotle Almond Chicken Mole

  • 2/3 cup roasted almonds (salted is fine)
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped onion
  • 2 garlic cloves, smashed
  • 1 (14.5 oz) can  fire roasted diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 2 chipotle peppers in adobe sauce, roughly chopped
  • 1  tablespoon  sugar
  • 1/2  teaspoon  ground cumin
  • 1/4  teaspoon  salt
  • 1/8  teaspoon  ground cloves
  • 2  (6-inch) corn tortillas, torn into small pieces
  • 1  (14 1/2-ounce) can vegetable broth
  • 1  tablespoon vinegar
  • 2 – 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts, trimmed of all fat

To prepare the chicken:

Preheat oven to 450°.  Sprinkle chicken with salt &  pepper and wrap, individually, in tin foil to keep the chicken moist while baking.   Place on a cookie sheet and bake for 25 minutes. Slice into strips.   *This can be done up to a day ahead of time.  As an alternative, you could poach the chicken breast in water for 15 minutes, or use leftover chicken breast from another meal.
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For the Sauce:

Place the almonds in a food processor and process for 2-3 minutes or until smooth (it takes a little bit of time, but should end up looking like peanut butter). Keep in the food processor.
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In a large skillet heat oil on medium heat.  Add the chopped onion and garlic cloves.  Sauté for 3-4 minutes.  Add the rest of the ingredients through broth: tomatoes, chipotle peppers, sugar, cumin, salt, cloves, tortillas, vegetable broth.  Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to simmer for 15 minutes.

Add the tomato mixture to the food processor with the almonds.  Also add 1 T. vinegar.  Puree mixture until smooth.  Return mixture to pan and add the chicken to heat through. Serve over rice if desired.

Adapted from Cooking Light

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