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Monday, November 23, 2020

Turkey with Pumpkin Mole Sauce

Thoughts on Thanksgiving leftovers...? Well, I do keep a loose flurry of recipes that I have amassed over the years. This one, in my old binder, was apparently printed in 2004 and lay there, in wait. I'm so glad I riffled through the binder and found this old chestnut for chicken with pumpkin mole sauce--it's delicious! But let's talk turkey--why not try this recipe with a proud Tom this year? 

Now, I love traditional chicken mole as you might know and was delighted with this new pumpkin version. As often happens, I find there are delicious recipes to be discovered, waiting to be tailored to one's personal taste, the season, or even dietary restrictions. I, for example, am someone who does not like it spicy hot and I have an aversion to tomatoes (or rather they do to me). I substituted white cannellini beans for substance and the squeezes of fresh lime wedges made up for the acidity. My version was a smaller set-up designed for two and was all quite wonderful. The basic recipe is below with personal reflections and time-saving suggestions in italics. The link is here and thanks to Bon Appetit, and chef Rick Bayless for the recipe!

Chicken (or Turkey) with Creamy Pumpkin Mole Sauce
Serves 2

4 1/2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 3-inch-diameter slice white onion (1/2 inch thick), separated into rings
2 garlic cloves, peeled (I used a garlic ginger paste that I had on hand, to great effect! About 2 teaspoons)
1 5x3x1/2-inch-thick slice country white bread, crust trimmed (I used a single onion brioche roll, not trimmed, just easier)
3/4 cup drained canned diced tomatoes (insert cannellini beans here)
1 1/2 cups low-salt chicken broth
1 canned chipotle chile (or so, some like it hot!)
1 cup canned pure pumpkin
1/3 cup whipping cream (I used fat-free sour cream, thank you)
2 teaspoons dark brown sugar
1 skinless boneless chicken breast (I used 1 huge chicken breast, bone-in--or shredded turkey!)
Fresh cilantro sprigs (nope)
Lime wedges (yes!)

(Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees)

  1. In same large pot, heat 1 1/2 tablespoons oil over medium-high heat. Add onion rings and (garlic and ginger paste). Sauté until brown, about 4 minutes. Transfer to processor, leaving oil in pot. Add bread to processor (reserve pot). Add tomatoes (or beans) to processor. Puree mixture until smooth. Transfer tomato puree (or beans) to small bowl (do not clean processor). Add 1/2 cup broth and (1 ) chipotle chile to processor. Puree until smooth.
  2. Add 1 tablespoon oil to reserved pot. Heat over medium-high heat. Add chile puree; cook until puree thickens and darkens, stirring often, about 1 1/2 minutes. Add tomato (or bean) puree. Simmer until thick, stirring often, about 4 minutes. Whisk in pumpkin and 3 cups broth. Bring to boil. Reduce heat to medium-low. Simmer until mole thickens and reduces to 3 1/3 cups, about 30 minutes. Put chicken in oven for 25 minutes. Whisk in whipping cream (or sour cream) and sugar. Season to taste with salt. 
  3. (NOTE: If you are using leftover turkey, just add pumpkin sauce to it here, with the sour cream and sugar, and put in oven for 20 minutes. There is no need to cook further after that--you are really just warming up the turkey and letting the flavors blend together. Otherwise, proceed as below!)
Cook chicken for 20 minutes more, adding sauce and covering. Sprinkle chicken generously with salt. Let rest for at least 10 minutes, cover slipped to the side to cool, before serving. Spritz with lime. Dress with chicken-flavored rice!

The link to the actual recipe is here. Thank you for the recipe!

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