joannE.'s Porotos Granads with Polenta Dumplings Recipe
Porotos Granads is an Andean stew that comes from the Mapuche Indians and is a national dish of Chile. “Porotos” is Chilean for “beans” and the traditional recipe includes three types of beans. This hearty and savory variation only uses pinto beans and replaces the corn with the polenta dumplings and quinoa.
*The recipe below serves 6-8 hungry diners but freezes well and is even better the next day.
For the Stew
2 Tbs Olive Oil
8 oz Slab Bacon (1/4 Cup diced in ¼ inch cubes)
1 Medium Onion
2 Carrots, small dice (about the size of a pinto bean)
2 Celery Stalks, small dice (about the size of a pinto bean)
4 Cloves Garlic, minced
1 14.5-oz Can Diced Tomatoes, strained – juice reserved
1 Bay Leaf
1 Tbs Paprika
½ Cup Drinkable Red Wine
1 ½ - 2lb Butternut Squash (about 2 medium squashes), pealed, seeded, and cut into 1 ½ inch cubes)
32 oz Low Sodium Chicken Broth
½ Cup Red Quinoa
2 15-oz Cans of Pinto Beans, do not strain or rinse
Salt & Pepper
3 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
For the dumplings
2 Cups Water
1 Cup Polenta - *Do not use quick cooking polenta*
½ Tsp Salt
Heat large heavy bottom soup pot (a Dutch oven works well) over medium high heat, add olive oil. Sauté bacon until brown and crispy. Remove bacon with slotted spoon and set aside on a paper towel to drain excess grease. Sauté onions and carrots in the bacon grease until well caramelized. Add the garlic, celery and tomatoes, sauté until all the moister has evaporated and the tomatoes have taken on a dark red almost rusty color (approx 7-10 minutes). Add paprika and bay leaf.
Deglaze the plan with red wine and reduce until almost dry. Add reserved tomato juice and stock. Bring stew to a boil and add butter nut squash. Reduce heat to low and cover. Let simmer for 20 minutes. Add quinoa and simmer covered for an additional 10 minutes  .
While the quinoa cooks, brings 2 cups of water and ½ tsp salt to a boil in a small saucepan. Turn of the heat and whisk in polenta. Using two spoons form polenta into 2 inch dumplings.
Add the beans to the stew and season with salt and pepper – *Important* you adjust the seasoning after the beans and broth are added since many brands already contain a hefty dose of sodium.
Return the stew in a simmer and gently drop the dumplings on top (do not stir). Cover and let dumplings steam for an additional 10 minutes over low heat.
Garnish with the crispy bacon and fresh basil.
 Quinoa is native to Chile and completes the stew's already well rounded nutritional profile. It is great source of protein (12-18%) and is the only plant based food source that contains all 8 essential amino acids. For more information on quinoa - http://chetday.com/quinoa.html
 If stew in too thick add water or additional chicken stock to adjust consistency.