Chilean Porotos Granados
Porotos Granados is a light summer soup popular in the country of Chile that embraces the fresh summer harvest of cranberry beans, corn, tomatoes, and squash, which are all indigenous to Chile and available in abundance in the late summer months.
With all the wonderful, garden-fresh corn, tomatoes, and squash this time of year, I thought Chilean Porotos Granados the perfect dish.
The typical squash of Chile are much larger than those grown in the average American garden. Since I didn’t have any 20-pounders handy, I used butternut squash in this recipe, because it’s similar in taste and texture to the giants grown in Chile.
Beans are a very common food in this South American country. In fact, there’s even a saying there that goes something like, “just as Chilean as beans”.
Cranberry beans are the legumes traditionally used in this luscious stew. In fact, I think that “porotos grandados” means shelling cranberry beans. (Any Chileans reading?)
** Edit: Apparently, there was at least one Chilean reading. Please see the first comment below for what Granados really means. 🙂 Thank you, Ignacio!
Chileans use fresh, rather than dried beans to make Porotos Granados. Since I didn’t have fresh cranberry beans (and I’ve never even been to Chile), my rendition can’t technically be called traditional Chilean Porotos Granados. But it still tastes fabulous!! I hope you enjoy!
Chilean Porotos Granados
- 1 medium yellow onion, diced
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 1/2 cups diced tomatoes - (canned or fresh)
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon granulated onion
- 1/2 teaspoon dried basil - or 1/2 tablespoon chopped fresh basil
- 1/2 teaspoon cumin
- 1/4 teaspoon sweet paprika
- 1 medium butternut squash, peeled and diced - (about 3 cups)
- 3 cups water - or vegetable stock or broth
- 2 cups cooked cranberry beans, red beans, or pinto beans
- 1 1/2 cups organic corn kernels
- 1 teaspoon salt - or to taste
- In a large soup pan, sauté onion in oil over medium heat until they begin to look translucent.
- Add garlic and sauté for 1 additional minute.
- Stir in tomatoes and seasonings and continue cooking for another 5 to 10 minutes, stirring often.
- Meanwhile, peel squash. Remove seeds and cut into 1-inch cubes (approximately).
- Stir in cubed squash, water (or vegetable stock or broth), and beans. Bring to boil, then reduce heat, and simmer, uncovered, for 30 minutes or until squash is very soft and has begun to fall apart.
- Add corn and salt to taste. Cook until heated through. Serve hot.
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Hi, i loved your recipe. I am Chilean.
Everything you say is correct, except de part of Cranberry beans. Granados comes from the verb Granar (to split bean or seeds). Because we took the beans pods and split them before starting to cook.
When i was a child, my whole family participated from the process. Boiling the corn and after cut the corn teeth. Splitting the pods and extracting the beans.
Nowadays you can buy the beans and the corn in the supermarket, but traditionally you HAVE to buy it at the farmers market, which we have everywhere. (It´s called Feria, (market)) and there are everywhere.
Greetings from Chile
Muchisimas gracias por la correccion, Ignacio.
Y muchisimas gracias por compartir con nosostros mas de Porotos Granados. Muy interesante.
Loved this! It was rich and full flavored.Thanks for the recipe!
You’re welcome, Candy. Glad you liked it.
Porotos granados referrs to taking the fresh beans, opening the pods and removing the beans (granar is to remove the grano or seed). It doesn’t mean cranberry beans.
Oregano? Cumin? I’m from Chile never heard of using these two spices nor tomatoes in it my mum always served this soup with fresh tomatoes salad & used fresh basil, sorry but this soup sounds more like a southwest soup not the original Chilean porotos granados which I absolutely adore…..
Good to hear from a Chilean. I would love to try some of the soup that your mother served. It sounds delicious!
As I mentioned in my post, this is certainly not traditional Porotos Granados, but rather my version
of it using ingredients that I have available to me here in the U.S., with a few additions to make it attractive to my American readers. (I’m a weight loss consultant from the U.S., not a Chilean chef 🙂 )
Even if it isn’t traditional, we still greatly enjoy the flavor and are thankful toward the Chileans who introduced the idea to us.
If you ever want to share some authentic Chilean recipes with me, I would consider it an honor and would enjoy trying them.
Hi Jennifer, thanks for sharing this delicious recipe. I’m Chilean and I live in the US and this week I found in a supermarket beans to make my “porotos granados” . The recipe that you share is similar to my family recipe.
If other ingredients are added to give more flavor it is welcome. What can this not be absent is the fresh basil because it is the characteristic flavor of this dish and reminds me of summer.
You know what is best for this dish? The whole family is involved in the process of “shelling” beans before cooking it is typical of summer. And if you want to do even more Chilean, you can prepare a Chilean Salad or “Ensalada a la Chilena” which is chopped tomatoes with onion and cilantro.
Thank you very much for sharing this typical recipe for Chile.
I have curious, you have a relationship with Chile and his food? Usually people do not know much about our food.
A hug and thank you! You bring me good memories
Thank you so much for your great comment. What a beautiful tradition – the whole family shelling the beans together. : )
That’s good to know about the fresh basil. I’m looking forward to warmer weather so we can have fresh basil again.
To answer your question, I don’t really know much about Chile or Chilean food; although I would love to learn. Me encanta el idioma español.
I too am Chilean-American and this is what I would call Chilean comfort food. Definitely agree with Fran that it must have fresh basil and that it pairs extremely well with “ensalada a la Chilena”. In fact, we put some of this salad on top of the porotos in summer. The tanginess of this tomato salad contrasts so well with the mild sweetness of the porotos.
If you ever get a chance to go to Chile, it’s worth going just for the food! They have the best fruits, vegetables and meats… And don’t even get me started on the seafood!…
Thank you for your comment. The ensalada a la Chilena sounds delicious. I would love to try it … and I would loooove to go to Chile to try the food … maybe some day. 🙂