This Mexican inspired Black Bean Molé is super easy and is filled with layers of complex flavour – totally delicious even for those dedicated meat eaters amongst us! It is also very versatile: serve with corn or flour tortillas for an easy taco dinner, on nachos, over rice or baked potato for a filling yet healthy, complete whole meal dinner with a difference.
If you aren’t familiar with Molé, it is a revered sauce in Mexican cuisine. It is often cooked for days on end and has such a great taste and texture, due to some interesting ingredients such as peanut butter, cinnamon, raisins and dark chocolate. Adding just a touch of these types of ingredients to savoury food may sound odd but trust me, it is insanely good! You must try it to experience it for yourself.
I first made this for a bonfire party we had in London on Guy Fawkes night, which comes on the first Saturday in November, just when the weather is getting quite chilly and you start to feel in need of some toasty and warm spices. (Guy Fawkes tried to burn down the Houses of Parliament back in 1605 so on this night effigies of him are burned over bonfires and fireworks are set off). I made 3 types of chili for this party to have over baked potatoes – a classic meat chili, a white chicken chili (which tasted great but unfortunately looked a little like vomit) and this Black Bean Mole Chili. Everyone agreed, even the meat eaters, that this was the best one.
Here is your recipe for Easy Mexican Black Bean Molé Chili:
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 onion, diced
- 1 carrot, diced
- 1 red or green bell pepper, diced
- 3 Tbsp coriander/cilantro stems, finely chopped
- 3 cloves garlic, crushed
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp ground coriander
- 1 tsp hot paprika
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 1 can black beans, drained
- 1 can diced tomatoes
- 1 Tbsp tomato paste (or ketchup)
- 1 Tbsp peanut butter
- 1 Tbsp currants or raisins
- 1 Tbsp chopped dark chocolate
- 2 green onions, chopped
- Coriander/cilantro leaves, jalapeños, sour cream and guac to serve
- Sweat the onion, carrot, pepper and cilantro/coriander stems in the olive oil over a medium heat until softened, about 10 minutes. Add the garlic and sauté for a further couple of minutes, until it releases its fragrance.
- Add the cumin, ground coriander, hot paprika and cinnamon stick, stir and sauté for a minute, and then add the tomatoes (plus a little water to rinse out the can) and the tomato paste. Let this bubble and reduce uncovered for 5-10 minutes.
- Add the beans to heat through, then the peanut butter, currants/raisins, dark chocolate and green onions and stir everything together until the chocolate is melted in. Take off the heat and cover to keep warm until serving.
- To serve, reheat if needed and scatter over some coriander/cilantro.
This chili is even better reheated after the flavours have had time to mingle, so maybe make the day before or even let sit for a couple of hours before reheating to serve.