History and Background
We covered some good history for Haiti on the Manman poul ak nwa: Haitian Cashew Chicken posting, so head over there to get the lowdown on the culinary history of Haiti.
Sos Ti-Malis is a flavorful Haitian sauce served warm over meat, fish, and rice dishes. It is also commonly used within recipes as well. Flavorful without being too spicy, Sos Ti-Malis has mild bell peppers, tomato paste and a variety of alliums (onions, shallot, and garlic). It has just a hint of spice coming from vinegar drawn off Pikliz.
The story: a folktale
There is an old Hiaitan folktale that helps to explain where the name comes from. Legend has it that two men, Bouki and Ti-Malice were good friends. Bouki, while kind hearted, was a bit of a freeloader and was very gullible. He always showed up at Ti-Malice’s house around lunch and took advantage of the kindness Haitians have. Being of a giving nature, they always offer what they have to their guests. And so, Ti-Malice was always compelled to share his lunch of tasty meat with Bouki.
Ti-Malice being a bit of a trickster wanted to scare off Bouki from coming every day. One day, he made a very hot sauce and covered the meat in his spicy sauce. However, the trickster’s plan backfired when Bouki loved it and told everyone in town to come try the sauce Ti-Malice made for him!
This is not the first time a plan to sabotage a meal with hot sauce backfired. This story is a lot like the legend of the origin of Prince’s Hot Chicken – check it out!
Our smooth take on the sauce
We made this recipe a few times and liked a blended version best. The original from A Taste of Haiti by Mirta Yurnet-Thomas, was good, but wasn’t thoroughly tested. It was thick, chunky and missing things like enough liquid to make a sauce with, so we added water. Also, we settled on a version that we pureed with a blender. Both traditional and immersion blenders work great. We’d love to blend ours in a Vitamix or a Blendtec when we have a chance someday.
You’ll find when you taste the sauce that it is very mild. There is just a hint of spice from the pikliz vinegar, but it’s not much. For a spicier recipe, simply add a Scotch bonnet or habañero pepper.
Sos Ti-Malis: Haitian Sauce Ti-Malice
Tried this recipe? Let us know what you think about it in the comments below!