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© Maura McEvoy / Chicken with Mole Negro
According to The Atlantic, one of the foremost experts in traditional Oaxacan cuisine is 71 year-old Soledad Ramírez Heras, who conducts private cooking classes out of her hilltop home. Her specialty is mole negro, a deeply complex chile-chocolate sauce, which traditionally takes all day to prepare—Soledad’s mole classes start at 9 a.m. and last for seven hours. You may be several hours too late to make mole from scratch for tonight's dinner, but there's a no-shame short-cut that even Mexican cooks rely on. This recipe for Pan-Roasted Chicken Breasts with Mole Negro uses store-bought black mole paste, which, when whisked with stock, reduces to a deliciously smoky sauce in just 25 minutes.