Also known as mole poblano, this is a sauce used in Mexican cuisine which is of true pre-conquest origins. It contains hot peppers, Mexican chocolate (which is vastly different from unsweetened baking chocolate), ground nuts, spices, cornmeal, oil, and various other things. You can buy condensed mole in a jar in bodegas or in grocery stores which stock good Mexican food. Or you can make your own (beware, this recipe is labor-intensive:

4 dried Pasilla chilies
4 dried mulato or red New Mexico chilies
1/4 lb ancho chilies
1 chipotle chile
1 or 2 medium onions, chopped
1-2 garlic heads, cut in half horizontally
2-4 medium tomatoes, peeled and seeds removed, chopped
1/2 lb tomatillos, husked and rinsed
2 Tbsp. sesame seeds
1/2 c peanuts
1/2 cup almonds
2 7-inch corn tortillas
1/4 cup or more raisins
2 2-inch cinnamon sticks
1 tps coriander seed
4-8 whole cloves
3 Tbsp. shortening or oil
2-4 oz. bitter "Mexican" choclate(or more to taste)
Lay chilies in a single layer on a cookie sheet and bake in preheated oven at 300'F. oven until chilies smell lightly toasted and are flexible, 5-8 minutes. While they are still warm, discard stems and shake out seeds.

Rinse chilies and put in a large bowl; add 8 cups boiling water and let stand until soft, 30 minutes or so. Drain and save liquid. Puree chilies, a bit at a time, in food processor or blender adding a total 2 cups reserved chilie-soaking liquid. Rub firmly through fine strainer into a bowl and discard residue.

Put the onions, tomato, tomatillos, garlic (cut side down), on a cookie sheet and bake at 450F turning occasionally, until the vegetables and tortillas have dark brown spots or edges. Let cool. Pull off vegetable skins and discard.

Puree vegetable mixture in a food processor or blender, adding a total of 1 cup reserved chili-soaking liquid. Rub firmly through fine strainer into a bowl and discard residue.

Toast tortillas in a dry frying pan over medium heat until they have brown spots, remove. Toast almonds & peanuts in the dry frying pan and set aside. Toast sesame seeds and spices last (they will toast fastest) and remove.

Add oil to the frying pan. Add nuts, spices, & raisins, stirring frequently. Tear up corn tortillas and add to this mixture. Continue cooking 5-10 minutes. Puree this mixture in a food processor or blender, adding remaining chili-soaking liquid.

In a large stockpot, mix all ingredients. Bring to a simmer on medium heat; cover and simmer to blend flavors, at least 2 hours, stirring often.

Chop chocolate; mix with sauce until melted. Use sauce within one week, or freeze. You could also can the sauce.

A mole is also the term used to describe a sleeper agent spy that has managed to infiltrate an opposing organization, usually an opposing espionage agency. Said agent is different from a double agent in that he or she is simply living/working inside the opposition, waiting for a prearranged signal to 'go active' and either carry out orders or execute a previously-planned task.

(From the German mol, short for molekulargewicht) The basic unit of amount of substance in the International System of units, defined by the Conférence Générale des Poids et Mesures in 1971 to be the quantity of a substance which contains as many specified elementary entities as there are atoms in 0.012 kilograms of carbon-12. One mole of a substance contains 6.02214 × 1023 elementary entities (Avogadro's number).

One mole of a chemical substance has a weight in grams numerically equal to its molecular weight. One mole of an ideal gas at standard temperature and pressure is 22.414 litres.

Symbol: mol
While it is true that the chocolate Mexican sauce known as mole is very well known, it is actually only one of several mole sauces.

The chocolate one, Mole Poblano, and described so well by bozon, is the only mole many people know of. All of the moles are very old recipes, existing in similar forms since before the arrival of the Spaniards. In this regard, they're not particularly spicy or chile-hot, and can be regarded as delicious archaeolgical oddities of Mexican cuisine.

The other moles are:

Mole Verde

Containing green chiles, stock, finely ground pumpkin seeds, and traditional Mexican spices, it is usually served as a sauce over pork or chicken. It's easier to make than Mole Poblano. The name means "green mole".

Mole Roja

Containing red chiles, finely ground nuts and/or seeds, ground or torn corn tortilltortillas, and Mexican seasoning. Like Mole Verde, it's usually served with pork or chicken. The name means "red mole".

research source: RecipeSource / UCLA Berkeley

Found in temperate zones of Europe, Asia and North America, moles are small voracious insectivores of Family Talpidae, Order Insectivora. They have round little bodies, short legs and tail and flat, pointed heads. They have lovely soft velvety gray or brownish-gray fur without nap. They live short lives, reaching sexual maturity at the age of 6 to 12 months, and producing one to seven young (usually about four) once or twice a year.

Although vegetation comprises only a small part of their diet, they are considered pests by gardeners. Their constant tunnelling can be very destructive to gardens and lawns, damaging the roots of plants. Surface mounds, often the first and only indication of their presence, are unsightly. To their credit, moles aerate the soil and kill noxious organisms.

Living most of their lives underground in a constant search for food, moles have little need for the senses of sight and sound; they have small or vestigial eyes and most lack external ears. Their bodies are specifically designed for tunnelling: forelimbs are set almost on opposite sides of the shoulders and are shortened and rotated outward.

Interesting moles:

  • American Shrew Mole, Neurotrichus gibbsii
    North America's smallest mole, with many shrew-like features, is relatively agile compared to its larger cousins and is often active above ground.

  • Iberian desman, Galemys pyrenaicus
    Russian desman, Desmana moschata
    These moles are aquatic! The Russian desman was trapped for its fur in the 19th century and is now rare.

  • Senkaku mole, Nesoscaptor uchidai
    This mole is extremely rare; it is found on one island, Uotsuri-jima Island. This island is subject to territorial conflicts among China, Taiwan and Japan.

  • Star-nosed mole, Condylura cristata
    North America's only semi-aquatic mole. Its nose is distinctive, consisting of twenty-two (22!) sensitive tentacles. Not even the elephant's trunk is as mobile, complex or touch sensitive. These hardy little fellows have been observed burrowing through snow and diving under ice.

  • Long-tailed shrew mole, Scaptonyx fusicaudus
    This is perhaps the world's tiniest mole, residing in western China and northern Burma. Its head and body may be only six cm long, but it has a three-cm tail.

  • Mole
    Hero of Kenneth Grahame's charming animal tales, The Wind in the Willows.

Personal note: my grandmother had a cat that caught moles. My grandmother used to say that cat was worth her weight in gold.

Common name for Hydatidiform mole. It may exist as a "complete" or "partial" mole. The complete variety is diploid and has double the paternal complement of chromosomes, lacking any maternal chromosomal material, and has no recognizable fetal tissue. The partial variety is usally triploid, although it may be diploid as well. The partial mole has a recognizable but nonviable fetus.

A more detailed Hydatidiform mole w/u is planned.

Importantly, in science (mostly chemistry), one mole (shortened to mol) is a number: approximated to 6.02x1023. A mole can be used to measure anything: a mole of trees is 6.02x1023 trees; a mole of people is 6.02x1023 people, half a mole of dust mites is 3.01x1023 dust mites.

This magical figure of 6.02x1023, also called Avogadro's Constant, was arrived at when experiments found that, in exactly 12 grams of the element carbon (or more, correctly, the isotope carbon-12), there were 6.02x1023 carbon atoms.

The symbol for amount is n. Using this number is quite useful in stoichiometry, taught to Year 11 (or equivalent) students in secondary school. The mole can be used in several equations to allow counting by weighing. The equations are

  • Solid matter: n=m/M
  • Matter in solutions: n=cv
  • Gases with certain conditions: n=V/Vm
  • General gases: PV=nRT

with m being mass (in grams, not kilograms); M being molar mass, c being concentration, v being volume, Vm being molar volume, P being atmospheric pressure, R being a gas constant and T being temperature.

The molar mass, relative atomic mass, or relative molecular mass of a chemical compound is equal to all the atomic masses of the respective elements. For example, H2O, water, has a molar mass of 18 g mol-1, since oxygen's is 16 and hydrogen's is 1. Other values can be found on any periodic table.

Concentration is in mol L-1 (or M), volume is in L, pressure is in Pa, temperature is in K, and the gas constant R has a value of 8.31. Vm has a value of 24.5 at SLC (pressure 1 atm, temperature approx. 298K) and 22.4 at STP (pressure 1 atm, temperature approx. 273K).

So, say you have weighed out 20g of pure sulfur, with the formula S. It's easy to work out 'M', and you already have 'm', so just substitute these values into the appropriate equation. Thus: n=20/32=5/8, which is five-eighths of a mole. How many particles of sulfur are there? 6.02x1023*5/8. Easy. Try it yourself one day: weigh out a small amount of table salt, substitute that into the first equation, and use 63 as the value for M. Or, weigh out some baking soda (NaHCO3, with the value of M being 84).

It's the same with solutions: weigh some sugar, and calculate n from the first formula (taking M to be 342), then stir it into some water that you know the volume of, in litres. Take the value for n you found in the first formula, rearrange the second formula to give c=n/v, then divide accordingly. You'll end up with a concentration in M.

What do you get as a reward for all this hard effort? You get to drink the sugar water.

Mole (?), n. [AS. mal; akin to OHG. meil, Goth. mail Cf. Mail a spot.]


A spot; a stain; a mark which discolors or disfigures.


Piers Plowman.


A spot, mark, or small permanent protuberance on the human body; esp., a spot which is dark-colored, from which commonly issue one or more hairs.


© Webster 1913.

Mole, n. [L. mola.]

A mass of fleshy or other more or less solid matter generated in the uterus.


© Webster 1913.

Mole, n. [F. mole, L. moles. Cf. Demolish, Emolument, Molest.]

A mound or massive work formed of masonry or large stones, etc., laid in the sea, often extended either in a right line or an arc of a circle before a port which it serves to defend from the violence of the waves, thus protecting ships in a harbor; also, sometimes, the harbor itself.

Brande & C.


© Webster 1913.

Mole, n. [OE. molle, either shortened fr. moldwerp, or from the root of E. mold soil: cf. D. mol, OD. molworp. See Moldwarp.]

1. Zool.

Any insectivore of the family Talpidae. They have minute eyes and ears, soft fur, and very large and strong fore feet.

⇒ The common European mole, or moldwarp (Talpa Europaea), is noted for its extensive burrows. The common American mole, or shrew mole (Scalops aquaticus), and star-nosed mole (Condylura cristata) have similar habits.

⇒ In the Scriptures, the name is applied to two unindentified animals, perhaps the chameleon and mole rat.


A plow of peculiar construction, for forming underground drains.


<-- 3. (fig.) a spy who lives for years an apparently normal life (to establish a cover) before beginning his spying activities. -->

Duck mole. See under Duck. -- Golden mole. See Chrysochlore. -- Mole cricket Zool., an orthopterous insect of the genus Gryllotalpa, which excavates subterranean galleries, and throws up mounds of earth resembling those of the mole. It is said to do damage by injuring the roots of plants. The common European species (Gryllotalpa vulgaris), and the American (G. borealis), are the best known. -- Mole rat Zool., any one of several species of Old World rodents of the genera Spalax, Georychus, and several allied genera. They are molelike in appearance and habits, and their eyes are small or rudimentary. -- Mole shrew Zool., any one of several species of short-tailed American shrews of the genus Blarina, esp. B. brevicauda. -- Water mole, the duck mole.


© Webster 1913.

Mole, v. t. [imp. & p. p. Moled (?); p. pr. & vb. n. Moling.]


To form holes in, as a mole; to burrow; to excavate; as, to mole the earth.


To clear of molehills.

[Prov. Eng.]



© Webster 1913.

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