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Black Bean Enchiladas with Easy Mole Sauce

Black Bean Enchiladas with Easy Mole Sauce

Mole is a savory chocolate-flavored chili sauce. Although I like both regular tomato-based enchilada sauce and mole sauce (which properly speaking makes “enmoladas” instead of “enchiladas”), Mike’s favorite is mole. Real mole sauce is apparently a multi-day extravaganza to make, and I don’t think you can buy it ready made like you can enchilada sauce (although making your own enchilada sauce is pretty easy). So I like this recipe because the excellent chocolate and chili flavors are there and it doesn’t take nearly as long to make.

I like this with a black bean filling, but it would probably be great with shredded chicken or pork, if you happen to be on the food chain. Whatever filling you like with your enchiladas, I highly recommend the mole sauce as an alternative to your standard enchilada sauce. It is not sweet at all, and the chocolate-chili combination gives it an almost smoky depth of flavor.

Onions and Spices

This is not that quick of a recipe because of the time it takes to make the sauce. What I do to make this a weeknight recipe is make the sauce in advance – it takes about 45 minutes – and then refrigerate it until I want to make the enchiladas. If you split the recipe up like that, you can make the enchiladas in little more than half an hour. This recipe makes great leftovers, too.

I tried a new brand of corn tortillas, and I was a little disappointed with them. They were thick and tended to tear while I was filling them, as you can see below. This was also probably because I overstuffed them, which is all too easy to do. My enchiladas never want to stay rolled up.

Rolled Enchiladas

I fit the enchiladas in by doing 8 across and then two rows of two down. I had leftover filling, so I spooned it into the corners.

Ready to Bake

Black Bean Enchiladas with Easy Mole Sauce

Heavily adapted from Vegetarian Times

Serves 4-6

Mole Sauce
2 Tbs. vegetable oil
1 medium-sized onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tbsp chili powder
1 tbsp. light brown sugar
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/8 tsp. ground cloves or allspice
1 8 oz. can tomato sauce
2 Tbs. cocoa powder
2 Tbs. peanut butter
1 c water or broth
1/2 tsp. salt [you may need more if you use water instead of broth]
freshly ground black pepper, to taste

10 oz. white cheddar cheese, shredded
12 6-inch corn tortillas
1 15-oz can black beans
1 c corn, frozen, fresh, or canned
1 bunch scallions, chopped

Sour cream, for serving


To make Mole Sauce: Heat oil in large pot over medium heat. Add onions, and cook 10 to 12 minutes, stirring occasionally, or until browned. Stir in garlic, chili powder, brown sugar, cinnamon, and cloves/allspice, and cook 1 minute, or until fragrant, stirring constantly.

Add tomato sauce, cocoa, peanut butter and water/broth. Season with salt and pepper. Reduce heat to medium-low; cook 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat and puree until smooth in blender.

To make Enchiladas: Preheat oven to 350F. Spray a 13×9-inch ovenproof baking dish with cooking spray. Ladle mole sauce into the bottom of the dish, just to cover.

Drain and rinse beans and corn in a colander. Heat a small skillet over a medium flame, and warm a corn tortilla on it for 30-60 seconds [This step is optional, but I think it helps make the tortillas more pliable and gives them a “cornier” taste.] Place a tablespoon or so of the black bean and corn mixture in the center of the tortilla. Top with cheese and scallions. Roll tortilla around filling, and set seam side down on top of mole sauce. Try not to overstuff your tortillas, but let’s face it, this is tough. Continue until the pan is full or you run out of tortillas or filling. Top with the rest of the mole sauce, and any leftover cheese and scallions. Spoon any leftover filling into the corners of the pan. Bake 20 minutes, or until sauce bubbles and cheese melts.

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