Mexican chocolate is made from dark, bitter chocolate mixed with sugar, cinnamon, and sometimes nuts. The end result is a “grainy” less smooth product. Chocolate is frequently purchased in “disks” although it is also available in bars and syrups.
Traditional Uses For Mexican Chocolate
Hot Drinks – The most traditional use for chocolate was for hot beverages such as Atole, Champurrado and Mexican Hot Chocolate. Learn more about Mexican Hot Beverages. Also see the recipe links on this page.
Atole is frequently served with tamales. Champurrado is also served as a dessert with Churros or a sweet bread call Pan Dulce. These drinks are whipped up using a wooden whisk called a molinillo (moh-lin-nyee-oh) (or a blender). The whisk is held between the palms of your hands. Then using a back and forth motion the whisk moves back and forth in the mixture until it is aerated and frothy.
Tejate – A Oaxaca specialty. An interesting cold drink is made of dark chocolate, corn masa, cocoa flowers, then marinated and frothed. (See photograph on left).
Mole (moh-Lay) – A sauce that varies in content depending on the region. The traditional red mole contains chilies, garlic, nuts, tomato, spices and chocolate. It is important to note that the amount of chocolate is very small and enhances but does not overpower the sauce. The sauce is served with turkey or chicken. Mole does not use the Mexican flavored chocolate but instead a dark bitter, unspiced version.