With a name meaning “sauce“ in indigenous Nahuatl, mole is notoriously complex.
It’s a simmered sauce of a host of ingredients—dried chiles, nuts, fruit, cacao, etc. Most people mistake mole negro for being a savory chocolate sauce, but that’s not a fair representation of the depth and nuance. Cacao adds bitterness and fruitiness, much like the various dried chiles used. It’s normally served as a finishing sauce, spooned over a dish. Due to its complexity, it’s not uncommon to see pastes or powders for sale in markets.