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Haitian Chicken aka Poul Nan Sos (Haitian Chicken in Sauce)
Please allow me to begin by saying that Haitian Chicken is BLOW YOUR MIND DELICIOUS! This is basically stewed chicken done the Haitian way...and I think it must be one of the BEST chicken dishes in world cuisine!
Haitian cuisine is a Creole cuisine, and Haitians use fresh herbs, peppers, bouillon cubes, and a seasoning base called epis. Poul Nan Sos incorporates all of these ingredients which combine to give you this absolute taste sensation that I keep going on about!
So let's get to the nitty gritty on how to make this fantastic dish!
Ingredients You Will Need To Make Haitian Chicken
So these are the ingredients you will need to make Haitian Chicken in Sauce:
- Chicken drumsticks
- Vegetable oil
- Bouillon cubes (please use Maggi just as the Haitians do!)
- Goya Adobo seasoning
- Haitian epis
- Chicken broth
- Red bell pepper
- Tomato paste
What is Haitian Epis?
You likely are familiar with most of the above ingredients, however Haitian epis might be new to you. Epis is a widely used seasoning base in Haitian cuisine. It seems that there are many variations of epis recipes, but they generally contain herbs, peppers, garlic, and yes, bouillon cubes. 😃. The epis is used to add flavor to rice, soups, stews, as well used as a marinade for various meats and fish. Think of it as similar to sofrito, which is used in Hispanic cuisine.
In this recipe for Poul nan Sos, I use Haitian epis as part of the marinade for the chicken. I HIGHLY RECOMMEND that you make your own epis! It's super easy and you'll want to add it to everything!
My recipe for epis can be found at "How To Make Delish Haitian Epis." The pictures above show one version made with green bell peppers, and another with red bell peppers. This accounts for the difference in color.
Once you have some Haitian epis, we are now ready to proceed with making this awesome chicken dish!
3 Steps To Haitian Chicken Heaven!
Ok, so it does take a little time to make this dish, but believe me it is TOTALLY worth it! Here are the 3 steps:
1. Clean The Chicken
I learned that many Haitians will clean not only chicken, but other types of meat as well. After researching, it seems that this is to get rid of any harmful bacteria that would make anyone sick. Please remember that in Haiti, the standards for food are not the same as in the United States, where I am. Technically if you have refrigeration and you are assured that the chicken you are buying is wholesome and safe, you can skip this step. HOWEVER, I recommend experiencing the preparation of this dish as Haitians would and it's interesting and fun! Plus I have to believe this process makes the chicken taste better!
Start by removing as much skin from the drumsticks as possible. Make some cuts into the meat (this is so the marinade can penetrate) and then rub the drumsticks with skins from a lime that has been juiced (reserve lime juice for later).
Next remove the lime skins and add hot water to the drumsticks for around 45 seconds.
The last step of the cleaning involves draining the hot water off and rinsing the chicken with cold water. That's it! Interesting and fun! 😃
2. Marinade The Chicken
Now it's time to add the most FANTASTIC marinade to your chicken! The marinade will consist of some Haitian epis, black pepper, bouillon cube, Adobo seasoning, lime juice, and let's throw in those lime skins as well.
Stir to combine everything and allow to marinate in your fridge for minimum of one hour, and up to overnight. I actually marinated my chicken for around 5-6 hours and I found that sufficient.
3. Cook The Chicken
After marinating, it's time to get the chicken on the stove! You will simply brown the drumsticks, then add chicken broth, onion, habanero pepper, red bell pepper, and tomato paste. Lastly bring to the boil, lower the heat, and cook covered for around 30 - 45 minutes until the chicken is tender and absolutely glorious.
And now, your divine Haitian Chicken is ready to serve!!
What To Serve With Haitian Chicken
Haitian Chicken is best served with Haitian Rice and Beans! Great with fried plantain as well!
I do hope you will take the time to enjoy preparing and eating this Haitian Chicken dish! It just might become one of your favorites!
Some Other Recipes You May Enjoy!
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Jwi manje ou! (Enjoy your food in Haitian Creole)
How To Make Incredibly Delicious Haitian Chicken!
- Cast iron pan with cover preferred, or large skillet with cover
- 2 lb chicken drumsticks
- 1 lime juiced; reserve juice and lime skins
- 2 tablespoon vegetable oil
- 1 onion diced
- 1-3 Habanero peppers sliced; deseed if you prefer a less spicy dish; use 1-3 according to how you like your heat!
- 1 red bell pepper sliced
- 2 tablespoon tomato paste
- 1 cup chicken broth low salt or unsalted is preferred
- salt to taste
- 2 ts black pepper
- 1 bouillon cube Maggi is preferred!
- ⅓ cup Haitian epis
- 1 tablespoon Adobo seasoning use Goya if possible - cut this to ½ tablespoon if you are watching your salt
Clean The Chicken
- Start by removing as much skin from the drumsticks as possible. Make some cuts into the meat (this is so the marinade can penetrate) and then rub the drumsticks with skins from a lime that has been juiced (reserve lime juice for later).
- Next remove the lime skins and add hot water to cover the drumsticks for around 45 seconds. Then drain the hot water off and rinse with cold water.
Marinade The Chicken
- Add the Haitian epis, black pepper, bouillon cube, Adobo seasoning, lime juice, and lime skins to the cleaned and rinsed chicken. Stir to combine the ingredients as well as you can, cover, and allow to marinate in your fridge for a minimum of one hour and up to overnight. I marinated mine for 5-6 hours and that worked just great!
Cook The Chicken
- Heat the vegetable oil in a large skillet on medium high. Remove the chicken from the fridge, and brown the chicken in the hot oil. (All contents from the marinade including the lime skins should be added to the skillet at this time).
- Once the chicken is browned, add chicken broth, onion, habanero pepper, red bell pepper, and tomato paste. Stir to combine, and bring to the boil. Then lower the heat, and cook covered for around 30-45 minutes until the chicken is tender. Taste and add salt if you would like.
- Your divine Haitian Chicken is now ready to serve!