This is a recipe I found months ago and have been waiting and waiting to find a chance to make it. I, of course, cut the recipe in half and it easily fed three ladies. It comes from Almost Meatless a great little cookbook about utilizing meat as a flavoring instead of as a main event. It's perfect for people who don't eat a lot of meat, trying to reduce meat, or simply trying to save money (meat is expensive, yo!). You could easily get four servings out of the halved recipe if you served it with two generous sides. This might even make a nice romantic meal for a Valentine's dinner (or for yours truly's pity party). It's spicy and comforting - just what we need to combat the winter nights!
Honestly, this isn't hard. I will say that I used corn that I froze last summer and black beans that I cooked and seasoned from a dried state. I also had two different colors of sweet potatoes and used both - just to jazz it up a bit. You do have to plan a little because the bake time is kind of long. Pop it in the oven, open a bottle of red wine, get Pandora going, and stare into the eyes of someone you love. You'll be screaming Holy Mole once it pops out of the oven.
How awesome are sweet potatoes, by the way?!
Sweet Potato Chorizo Mole
(Serves 4 to 6)
2 teaspoons vegetable oil
4 ounces (about 2 links) chorizo sausage
1/2 small onions, cut into 1/4 inch dice (about 1/2 cup)
2 cloves garlic, minced (about 1 tablespoon)
2 teaspoons chopped fresh oregano leaves, or 1 teaspoon dried
1 (28-ounce) can whole peeled tomatoes, juices strained and reserved, tomatoes chopped
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 tablespoon ancho chili powder
1 ounce bittersweet chocolate, chopped (about 2 tablespoons)
1 cup fresh or frozen corn, or 1 (11-ounce) can, drained and rinsed
2/3 cup water
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 1/2 pounds yellow or orange sweet potatoes, peeled and cut lengthwise into 1/8 inch slices, or in disks
8 ounces Cheddar cheese, shredded
1 avocado sliced for garnish
2 limes, cut into wedges, for garnish
Cilantro sprigs for garnish
1. Preheat the oven to 375F. Brush a 9 by 13-inch baking dish lightly with oil.
2. To prepare the tomato mixture, heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Slice the surface of the sausage lengthwise to remove the meat from the casings. Crumble the meat into the hot pan and saute for about 5 minutes, breaking it up further as it cooks and begins to brown. Add the onion and saute for 2 minutes. Add the garlic and the oregano and cook for 30 seconds more.
2. Pour the reserved tomato juices into the pan to delgaze, scraping the bits from the bottom. Add the chopped tomatoes, cumin, chili powder, and chocolate. Stir to combine while the chocolate melts. Add the corn and black beans, reduce heat to medium, and allow the mixture to simmer for about 10 minutes. Stir in the water. Taste for seasoning and add salt and appear if necessary.
3. Meanwhile, to assemble and cook, spread one-third of the sweet potatoes on the bottom of the prepared baking dish, overlapping the slices. Scoop half the tomato mixture (a heaping cup) and spread evenly across the first layer of potatoes. Top with one-third of the shredded cheese and spread evenly across the first layer of potatoes. Top with one-third of the shredded cheese. Repeat this layer process, ending with a layer of potatoes. Top with one-third of the shredded cheese.
4. Once assembled, cover with foil, pushing it onto the surface of the top layer, and bake for 1 to 1 1/2 hours, until the potatoes are fork tender (yellow sweet potatoes tend to take longer). Remove the foil and sprinkle the remaining third of the cheese atop the potatoes. Bake for an additional 10 minutes.
5. Remove from the oven and let rest for at least 10 minutes to allow the layers to set up. Cut and serve with avocado and lime wedges. Garnish with cilantro as desired.