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Oct 6, 2008 01:01 PM

Vegetable Ideas to Serve with Chicken Mole

We're planning to have a dinner for friends this fall and we'd love to cook a mole. We'll obviously have rice, but I think we'd want a vegetable dish that wasn't in a sauce. Any idea on what vegetables would be suitable?


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  1. One of my go-to dishes for the sort of meal is a simple quick saute (stir fry, really) of julienned chayote and/or summer squash with garlic, Mexican oregano, a little bit of crushed hot chile (e.g., chiltepin, chipotle), salt and pepper. If you're using a mix of chayote and squash, you will want to start the chayote a little bit ahead of the squash. I often use a little bit of tomato with this kind of dish, but I think that might take in a "sauced" direction.

    You could also try a similar simple saute with mild greens, like spinach or chard.

    If you're feeling a little more adventurous, you could try a salad of cactus pads (nopales) or one with jicama, lime, and chile.

    6 Replies
    1. re: hohokam

      hohokam- those sound good. I would also add a raw vegetable dressed with vinegar and/or citrus like cucumber or cabbage- both with a little raw onion. Cuts and contrasts the richness of the mole.

      1. re: torty

        I'm a late-comer to the cabbage game, so it doesn't come to mind right away like some other things. But I agree that the crunch and lightly acidic bite of a simple cabbage slaw would be a very nice accompaniment for a rich mole.

        Try as I might, I can't get past neutral on cucumbers, but I recognize that my ambivalence toward this refreshing vegetable is not entirely normal, especially for a wannabe chowhound. ;-)

        1. re: hohokam

          I'm not s cucumber fan either but it's great with Tajin sprinkled on it!

      2. re: hohokam

        I have served a salad like this with mole. Sorry I don't know quantities, I eyeball everything. I think it might have originally been from a rick bayless cookbook.

        cumin lime cilantro vinagrette: about a half bunch of cilantro, olive oil, cumin, honey, lime, salt and pepper, whizzed in a food processor or blender.
        butter lettuce
        green onions
        pepitas (toasted pumpkin seeds)
        cojita (mexican cheese) if you can find. it

        1. re: shivani

          I cooked Chicken Mole for my husband on Fathers' Day and made the salad. Absilutely fabulous.

          I couldnt find any jicima and substituted cucumber and asian pear. Next time I will plan ahead - the supermarket told me they were getting more in the next day.

          Ratios for the dressing:

          3 tbs evoo
          juice of half a lime
          1 tbs honey
          1 tsp cumin
          and half a small bunch of cilantro

          thanks :)

          1. re: shivani

            Thanks for the great idea! I made this salad tonight to go with my chicken mole poblano. I used savoy cabbage, sliced very thin in place of the lettuce. I also used the radish greens, some very thinly slice red bell pepper, some finely chopped fresno chile. Didn't have the pepitas or cojita, but it was delicious just the same. I used the dressing proportions suggested by rhonab. Really good!

        2. If you want something fresh and crispy, how about jicama slaw?

          That said, I was going to suggest plantains. Don't know if matches cuisine-wise, but they can be prepared from green or ripe plantains, mashed or fried.

          2 Replies
          1. re: Louise

            Good ideas - thanks very much. I agree with hohokam though about cucumbers - for some reason, I've never really liked them. But cabbage - that sounds good. Plantains as well. Thanks.

            1. re: Louise

              Yes... in Puebla... the better cooks often serve Mole Poblano with either Baked Plantains... or Stuffed Plantains.

              The other approach I have seen is to serve it with a single Anise Tamal.. not a vegetable.

              In either case, its common to preceed the Mole Course with a vegetable course such as a Berros (Watercress) Salad - I remember a stunning version that paired Watercress with Mango Escabeche, Queso Fresco... very lightly doused with pineapple vinegar & olive oil.... other vegetable dishes include Colorin Petal fritters, Squash Blossoms stuffed with Mushrooms & Sweet Potato, or Calabacitas stuffed with Squash Blossoms cream.

            2. You should be able to get some nice snow peas from SA about then.