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Lamour's Espageti (Haitian Spaghetti)

My mom's Haitian spaghetti is like a plate of confetti -- a celebration of our history
My mom's Haitian spaghetti is like a plate of confetti -- a celebration of our historyJoseph Lamour
Cook Time:
30 mins
Prep Time:
30 mins

Chef notes

My mother has been making espageti (Haitian spaghetti) in our family my entire life. We recently discovered the dish’s origins, which lie in the American occupation of Haiti before my parents were even born. Comforting, saucy and full of flavor, this dish is traditionally a hearty breakfast for Haitian folk, but my mother — and many other Haitian American moms — have been serving it to their kids for filling dinners and leftover lunches for decades.

Technique tip: When blending or processing the epis, make sure it doesn't fully become liquid by stopping when you can still see bits of onion, parsley and pepper.

Swap option: You can add a Scotch bonnet pepper or another pepper of choice to the epis or spaghetti for a spicy dish, but our family typically doesn’t do so. Try swapping out the kielbasa for chorizo or hot dogs, both which go well with this dish, according to your personal taste. You can also swap out a portion of the tomato sauce for ketchup or tomato paste, which traditional Haitian spaghetti usually calls for.


Epis (Haitian seasoning base)
  • 1 cup loosely packed chopped parsley
  • 1 head garlic, minced (5 tablespoons)
  • 1 onion, coarsely chopped
  • 1 bell pepper, coarsely chopped
  • 3 scallions, cut into chunks
  • 2 chicken bouillon cubes
  • 1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
  • 1 lime, juiced (2 tablespoons lime juice)
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon white vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • olive oil
  • 1 cup epis (recipe above)
  • 1 red, orange or yellow bell pepper, chopped, plus more to garnish
  • 1/2 onion, chopped (optional)
  • 1/2 pound spaghetti
  • 1 (12-ounce) kielbasa
  • 1 (15-ounce) can tomato sauce
  • 1 tablespoon ketchup
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground clove
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground pepper
  • freshly chopped parsley, to garnish


For the epis:

Add all the ingredients to a food processor blender and purée until smooth but not completely homogenous.

You’ll end up with a bit more than the 1 cup needed for the recipe, which will keep in the fridge for at least a week. You can add your leftover epis to omelets, meat, fish or other dishes to boost flavor.

For the spaghetti:


Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.


While the water heats up, drizzle a healthy amount of oil into a 5-quart sauté pan over medium-high heat.


Add the chopped pepper and onion, if using, and cook until tender, about 7 minutes.


Add the chopped kielbasa and sear for about 3 minutes on each side.


Once your pot of water is boiling, add the spaghetti, stirring with tongs to make sure it doesn't stick together.


Add the cup of epis to the kielbasa and vegetables, allowing it to cook for 3 minutes, stirring occasionally to keep it from burning.


Add the tomato sauce and ketchup to the sauté pan.


Sprinkle the ground clove and pepper to your pan and stir everything together, allowing the sauce to bubble a bit before cutting the heat.


If you like, you can add a dash more of the uncooked epis to the sauce to add a little brightness.


Once your pasta is ready, drain and add the spaghetti to the pan with the sauce, tossing to coat the noodles well.


Garnish the finished dish with freshly chopped parsley, minced bell pepper or both.