This naturally vegan ancestral dish, consisting of ayocotes cooked in a red mole sauce, was a favorite of mine growing up. It is truly a quintessential part of a traditional plant-based diet that is packed with nutrition, history, and incredible flavor!
Why this Recipe Works
This variety of mole is focused on a heavy base of dried red chilies such as chile guajillo, chile arbol, and chile mulato giving it its signature color. The final mole sauce pairs well with the ultra-creamy interior of the giant beans for a hearty meal that you and your family will be sure to love. It is also vegan, gluten-free, full of protein, and absolutely delicious!
Ayeócotl in the original Nahuatl, ayocotes, or runner beans as they are known in English, are an heirloom variety of beans native to the central/southcentral region of Mexico.
They come in a beautiful assortment of colors and patterns with over 800 recorded varieties that have been consumed since pre-Hispanic times.
I have always been an advocate for incorporating and planting heirloom varieties as they are quite literally small pieces of history that play an integral part in keeping our family and cultural traditions alive.
Now, I realize that the list of ingredients (for the mole) may be a bit daunting at first, especially if you have never made mole from scratch! Let me walk you through some of them.
Avocado Leaves: Avocado leaves are widely used as a seasoning in the south of Mexico. You can find them online or at your favorite Mexican market.
Tequesquite: Is a natural mineral salt found in the dried lakebeds of central Mexico that helps soften and season dried beans and other legumes. It is readily available online or at your favorite Mexican market.
Ayocotes: Also known as runner beans, are a large meaty bean native to Mexico. You can find them at Rancho Gordo in different color varieties. For those in Mexico, I do highly recommend the brand La Comandanta for ayocotes!
Chile Negro: Also known as pasilla is a long dry chile available at most Mexican markets or local grocery stores.
Chile Mulato: A mild to medium dried pepper dried poblano pepper similar to ancho. If you can’t find it online, you can substitute with ancho chiles.
Ceylon Cinnamon: Be sure to use Ceylon cinnamon which is thinner and easier to blend.
I know some of these ingredients can be hard to find, but if you can get your hands on them, it will make the recipe that much better.
How to Make Ayocotes in Mole Step-by-Step
- Soak beans the night before and the following day cook in a pot with water, vegetables and spices until tender. It should take about 2 hours or you can also cook them in the instant pot at high pressure for 35 minutes.
2. Toast ingredients one by one and soak in water.
3. Blend all the soaked ingredients until smooth until it forms a paste.
4. Fry sauce and pour in prepared beans and their broth.
Serve into bowls and top with diced onions, cilantro, tomatoes, and/or fresh serrano or jalapeno peppers.
Store the remainder of the mole paste in an air-tight container in the fridge or freeze for future use. Store the final dish in the fridge for up to 1 week. When storing the dish, the ayocotes have a tendency to soak up excess water from the mole sauce. Reheat in a pot adding enough water or veggie broth to thin it back out to its normal consistency.
Yes, any bean would work with this recipe, but I highly recommend you find the ayocotes. They are unlike any bean you can find at the grocery store.
This paste can then be diluted with broth and used pretty much anywhere you would generally use mole from enmoladas, chilaquiles, empanadas to simply serving it over rice.
Ayocotes in Mole Purépecha
For the ayocotes:
- 1 lb. + dried ayocotes (soaked overnight) (500g)
- ¼ large white onion
- 3-4 large garlic cloves
- 2 dried avocado leaves replace with dried bay leaves or epazote leaves
- 1 ½ tbsp. coarse sea salt
- 1 tsp. tequesquite rocks optional
For the mole:
- 8 chile guajillo dried, seeds and stems removed
- 4 chile negro also called chile pasilla, dried, seeds and stems removed
- 4 chile mulato replace with chile ancho, dried, seeds and stems removed
- 6-8 chile de árbol dried, seeds and stems removed
- 1/3 cup raw whole almonds (50 g)
- 1/3 cup 1/3 cup raw shelled pumpkin seeds (50 g)
- 1/3 cup 1/3 cup raw white sesame seeds (50 g)
- 1/3 cup 1/3 cup raw shelled peanuts (50 g)
- 1/2 tsp. thyme, dried
- 1/2 tsp. ground cumin
- 1 tsp. oregano, dried
- 4 large allspice berries
- 4 large whole cloves
- 6 black peppercorns
- 1 Ceylon cinnamon stick, about 4-5 inches in length
- 1 medium white onion
- 3-4 large garlic cloves
- 4-6 corn tortillas, fresh or premade work fine
- 3/4 cup raisins (100g)
- 2 tbsp. avocado oil
- ½ cup diced white onion
- ¼ cup chopped cilantro
- ½ cup diced
- ¼ cup minced serrano or jalapeno peppers
To prepare the ayocotes:
- In a small cup, mix the tequesquite rocks with a small amount of water letting it soak for a few minutes while we prepare the rest of the ingredients.
- In a large cooking pot, throw in the soaked beans with onion, garlic cloves, avocado leaves, and salt (with the exception of the tequesquite we have soaking), filling the pot with enough water to completely submerge everything with an additional 2-3 inches of water above the bean level.
- Add in the tequesquite water being careful as to get as little of the sediment of the rocks as possible, stir, cover the pot with its lid, and bring it to a boil over medium-high heat. (You can also do this in the instant pot at high pressure for 35 min.)
- Once boiling, reduce to a medium-low flame and let cook for 1 ½ - 2 hours or until beans are fully cooked from the inside, turn off flame, remove onion, avocado leaves, and garlic and set aside meanwhile we prepare the mole paste.
To prepare the mole paste:
- Fill a large bowl (heat proof) with warm water. We are going to use this to soak the ingredients once we have finished toasting them in order to soften them up and make it easier to blend in a food processor/blender.
- In a large skillet or saucepan over high heat, we are going to toast the ingredients in groups as listed in the order above. Start with the chiles, toasting them for about 20-30 seconds or until fragrant and slightly charred, being careful not to burn them as this will impart a bitter flavor to the mole. Once toasted, place into the bowl of water to soak.
- Toast the nuts and seeds until fragrant, being careful not to get the sesame seeds everywhere as they will pop during toasting. Once toasted place into the bowl of water.
- The spices will need the most amount of attention as they can burn the fastest; they should only be toasted for a few seconds and then placed into the water bowl.
- The final group of ingredients will take the longest because we want to get a really nice char on the onions and garlic while drying out the tortillas. Once completed place into the water bowl.
- Once everything is done being toasted and has been soaking in the water (for about 10 minutes), we are going to fish out the ingredients with a large slotted spoon, working in small batches, placing them into a food processor/high-speed blender adding in enough water to completely process everything into a paste. The paste should be the consistency of tomato paste. Set paste aside.
Combining everything together:
- In a pot or deep saucepan over medium-heat, warm up the avocado oil and add in two cups of the prepared mole paste.
- Cook the paste until it starts to boil, consistently stirring to prevent it from sticking to the bottom.
- Once boiling, add in the pot of cooked ayocotes with its broth, stirring until fully combined and adding in additional water or veggie broth to thin it out if necessary. I like mine on the thinner side
- Cook this mixture for an additional 5 minutes until it is brought back up to a boil, salt to taste.
- Serve into bowls and top with diced onions, cilantro, tomatoes, and/or fresh serrano or jalapeno peppers.
Although dorastable.com attempts to provide accurate nutritional information, these figures should be considered estimates.