Food is so much more than flavor and fuel. Food is heritage, it’s personal history, and it’s something to be shared with love and joy.
That’s how chef Chris Viaud approaches his cooking, and it’s what earned him a spot on Top Chef season 18 and made him a James Beard semifinalist of 2022.
Viaud ties everything back to his Haitian roots, creating a special kind of cuisine that introduces diners in his local New Hampshire to the warmth and tropical seasoning of the Caribbean nation. His restaurant Greenleaf serves hearty Haitian favorites to a wide audience of admirers, but it's his special Ansanmnh Sundays that really set him apart.
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Once a month, Viaud invites locals to eat alongside his own family, sharing not just the flavors of his culture but also the hospitality. One of the usual dishes includes his delicious Poule Nan Sos, stewed chicken in Creole sauce, that features the Haitian spice marinade Epis.
“When I think of the ultimate comfort food, I think of food that is rich in flavor and history, and tells a story,” Viaud says. “This dish that I grew up eating with my family resembles all of that. What I love the most is that the chicken absorbs all of the flavors from the citrus herb marinade as it is cooked in a tomato-based sauce with peppers, onions and spices. It has a comforting flavor to it that always reminds me of home.”
Today, Viaud is sharing his delectable Epis and Poule Nan Sos recipes with us, as well as a bonus recipe for his “Diri Kole ak Pwa,” or Haitian rice and beans, to serve as a traditional side. It’s a real treat that’ll wow anyone who comes to your table, and it will bring a bit of that Haitian magic to your own kitchen.
Yields about 8 ounces
Add all ingredients to a blender and blend well. Taste and add additional salt if needed and blend again.
Serves 2 to 4
Serves 2 to 4
Photography by: Courtesy of Ansanm