This Haitian Soup Joumou Recipe Is So Cozy and Delicious

Photos by David Handschuh

Also known as Freedom Soup, the recipe from La Talaye in Haverstraw mixes butternut squash, potatoes, and parsnips for a flavorful fall meal.

Soup Joumou (Freedom Soup/Butternut Squash Soup)


1 medium kalabasa (or butternut squash) cut into large pieces
1 lb beef, cut into 1/2″ pieces
1 cup carrot, cut into 1/4″ slices
1/4 cup celery, chop into 1/4″ pieces
1 medium radish or parsnip, cut into medium-sized pieces
2 large potatoes, cut into 1/4″ cubes
1 large leek, cut into small slices
1 cup macaroni or rigatoni
3 sprigs thyme
2 Tbsp red or green bell pepper, diced
1 Tbsp parsley, chopped
1 Scotch bonnet pepper
1 Tbsp Better Than Bouillon
2 qt water
3 Tbsp canola oil
1 Tbsp olive oil
1 lime, juiced
sea salt and pepper to taste


In a large bowl, season cleaned beef cubes with epis (Haitian spices), lime juice, sea salt, and ground black pepper. Marinate for about 30 minutes.

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Add canola oil to large pot or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Transfer marinated beef cubes and simmer for about 20–45 minutes, or until tender. Then roast beef cubes until brown.

In a separate pot with water, boil kalabasa for 20–25 minutes, or until soft.

With a serving spoon, transfer kalabasa to a blender with remaining broth. Purée until smooth.

Pour purée into pot, adding carrot, celery, radish, potato, leek, cabbage, Scotch bonnet pepper, thyme, Better Than Bouillon, and water. Cover and simmer for 15 minutes.

Add macaroni and red bell pepper. Stir, and cook for another 12–15 minutes. Add lime juice, salt, and pepper to taste.

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Transfer the soup joumou to a bowl and serve with some good Haitian bread.

Related: La Talaye Cooks up the Flavors of Haiti in Haverstraw

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