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Feb 7, 2002 10:42 AM

Ibarra recipe results (long & late)

  • l

A while ago I requested some recipes & ideas for Ibarra chocolate. First, a very belated thank
you to those who responded. I am particularly grateful to the person who emailed me directly
several recipes.
I tried one of the mole recipes that was emailed - I think it was the one from the San Francisco
paper. Let me tell you that I am a novice cook. I have never made mole before and the recipe
was somewhat intimidating, but what the heck.
The mole recipe called for things like an entire head of garlic, roasted over a flame for about 15
minutes (I used the outdoor gas grill and it took me much longer) until blackened, then core taken
out & entire head with peel, thrown into the food processor with various and sundry items. A
recipe that asks you to basically burn an item & then throw (perhaps not the exact word, but
definitely within the spirit) it into the mix, peel & all, well, that’s my kind of recipe.
The recipe also called for dry roasting a lot of dried chile peppers. Having never done this before,
I was not quite prepared for the resulting asphyxiation. As perhaps many of you already know,
this wasn’t just smoke rising from the pan...this was CHILE smoke. The sensation is one of
having a boa wrap around your lungs and squueeeeeeze. My dog - a sturdy 60lber - ran, tail
between legs, down to the basement. My unsuspecting SO, in the shower, started coughing &
crying. Just writing about it now makes my eyes water.
Believe it or not, I really did have fun doing this and enjoyed the results - smokey (of course),
nutty, slightly heated (surprisingly not that hot, given the number of chiles used) sauce. My SO
tasted the hint of chocolate, I didn’t.

Another recipe I tried was Caitlin McGrath’s cookie recipe ( I had some trouble chopping the
chocolate into chips (I really should take a knife techniques course) and had a lot of granular
remnants. My instinct would have been to pour the excess grains into the cookie batter along
with the chips, but I had read the post exchange betw. Caitlin and a fellow chowhound who had
tried the recipe but found the cookies to be too gritty because the sugar didn’t dissolve. So, I
only put the chips in. I put the remnants into a grinder - and now I have Mexican chocolate
powder to sprinkle over coffee or ice cream. I loved the cookies, very sweet & I really liked the slight/fine granular texture. I’m not sure why, but they kind of remind me of snickerdoodles.

Thanks again for the great suggestions!

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  1. I didn't read the original discusion, but there is a good recipe for Mexican Chocolate Cake in The Border Cookbook by Bill Jamison and Carol Alters Jamison. The cooking time is a little off and I would recommend lining your cake pans with wax or parchment paper. The icing is a little unwieldly but still quite tasty.

    1 Reply
    1. re: raj1

      Thank you

      I received Ibarra Chocolate for Christmas. I knew I had seen a recipe for a cake using it, but I couldn't remember where. Now I know where to find it.

    2. Thanks for starting the Ibarra buzz again. It's a good reminder to make something interesting of the package I have at home. I need to go back to that old thread.

      I wonder if there's a way to find that mole recipe on line - I loved your description of the preparation. I'd ask you to post the recipe here, but I suspect a simple cut'n'paste job from the original would violate CH guidelines. Do you think it was from the Chronicle? Did the recipe have a name (Moe?)

      As an aside, and for future reference, it's really easy to make the URLs you provide into live links: just paste into the URL box below, type a name in the Title box, and you're done! That's what I did with the link you provided for Caitlin's cookie recipe. Now it's alive!


      5 Replies
      1. re: Helen F

        There are over 25 mole recipes at the link I've listed below. Make sure to look under chicken mole and turkey mole as well as mole and mole poblano.


        1. re: Nancy Berry

          Wow, I'm afraid to look. (It already takes so long to scan HotPosts these days - how will I get any work done once I start in on the mole recipes? Maybe someone should market MoleNews.)

          Thanks, Nancy

          1. re: Nancy Berry

            Holy mole, Nancy! Are there any here that you've tried and recommend?

          2. re: Helen F

            Thanks for the suggestion on the URL - I will definitely make a link as suggested next time.
            Oh, and the mole recipe I tried was from the San Francisco Chronicle, 4/29/98 "Mole Negro De Oaxaca."

            1. re: lizmc

              I recently made mole negro de Oaxaca from scratch--not my first time. There's a reason that most cooks in Mexico buy pre-made mole paste instead of making their own. It's a huge job! The recipe I used was from _The Food and Life of Oaxaca_ by Zarela Martinez, which is an excellent book with many authentic recipes. I have made many of them, and haven't yet found a dud. But I was also burning chile seeds and tortillas, overworking my exhaust fan and making my family crazy.

              Instead of sweetened Mexican chocolate, however, I used unsweetened Sharffenberger and some extra canela. All the raisins, prunes, apricots and plantain in the recipe make it sweet enough, and Ibarra or Abuelita sweet chocolate would put it over the top, as far as I am concerned.

              In order to make the mole smooth, I ran it through a chinois, which was a heckuva lot of work, but it resulted in a sauce that was incredibly silky. (I served it on brined, grilled Cornish game hens.) My dinner guests were completely blown away.

              By the way, authentic mole negro paste (and mole rojo paste) can be purchased at Guelaguetza, a Oaxacan restaurant in L.A. I brought some home with me last time I was back there, but it's long gone now.