Saturday 4 January 2014

Celebrating New Year with Porotos Granados, Chilean Squash and Bean Stew (...oh...and A's Pizzas)

Happy New Year to you and yours. We celebrated ours with family in Sussex, arriving between floods and power cuts to the smell of  porotos granados, wood smoke and candles. Then as the wind and rain lashed, we hibernated for two days. 

Gathered around the long table, ate and drank and talked. Then moved to a smaller one by the fire for even more eating, drinking and talking. Played games while half listening to the albums that have made-up the soundtrack to our lives so far. Watched an eclectic mix of old films  like Tarantino's, Jackie Brown and Mark Rydell's Golden Pond. (Oh to have a lakeside log cabin, with two stories and a balcony.)

While the men kept the fire burning, we poured over Japanese pattern books deciding what to make, we didn't even change out of pyjamas, never mind cut-out dresses. It was good to continue the slowing down after weeks of running. 

...then when the waters subsided we left before outstaying their welcome for too long...making plans on route for a whole new year ahead... 

I hope the eve of the year was as fun for you and that it ushers in all the good and happy things that you could ever wish for...

Porotos Granados is a traditional Chilean squash and bean stew. 

I've studied a number of recipes and basically they all include the following ingredients, I've linked to a recipe below for the exact amounts:

  • onion, chopped finely
  • garlic, chopped or crushed finely
  • paprika
  • cumin
  • chili pepper, you could use fresh or dried
  • oil of choice
  • any kind of beans, pre-cooked dried ones or pre-soaked ones that will cook in the time the squash is cooked. 
  • sweetcorn
  • any kind of squash
  • tomatoes, fresh or canned
  • fresh basil
  • water or stock
  • salt and pepper
  1. Saute the onion in a little oil until soft.
  2. Add the garlic and cook for a further few minutes
  3. Meanwhile peel, and remove the seeds from the squash and cut into mouth sized pieces.
  4. Add the spices to the onion mix and cook for a few minutes.
  5. Add the tomatoes. If using fresh tomatoes peel and chop first. Combine well with the other ingredients. Season lightly with salt and pepper.
  6. Add the stock and bring to the boil.
  7. Add the squash and beans. 
  8. Cook until the squash is tender and the beans cooked, adding the corn towards the end of the cooking time.

Various recipes use other herbs such as oregano, bay leaf or marjoram . They may use chick peas or add green beans or spinach. This is one to play around with depending on what's in season. It's very comforting and warming perfect for hibernating on wet winter days.  

We had Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall's version from River Cottage, Veg Every Day. Which is an amazing book that I can't put down at the moment. You can link to the recipe on HFW's website here.

top image via


  1. Stormy weather, good food, music, family, Japanese pattern books, and a toasty fire--your New Year's celebration sounds cozy and memorable. In other words, perfect! I may try Porotos Granados this week. It looks yummy.

  2. Happy New Year dear friend.
    I feel like I have been hibernating for weeks and am just now coming up for air. Tomorrow we are going to see some really cold weather so I have a feeling we won't be straying far and trying your recipe sounds perfect.
    What great Japanese patterns. One of my goals this year is to sew something I can wear so I will have to keep an eye out for that book.

    1. Ah thank you Tracey, I wish a very happy one for you and yours. It's good to hibernate but then it's good to get back into the old routine too.
      Keep warm and toasty

  3. Happy New Year and what a perfect way to spend a couple of days hibernating from the weather accompanied by this hearty stew. What a great time you must have had. Just sent Veg every day to my sister for her birthday. I hope she likes it - she is a Hugh fan so I think I am on a winner.

    1. Happy new year to you too. It was lovely. I'm sure your sister will love it, it's a great book. Lovely recipes.

  4. What a table setting! Sorry that you experienced floods but hopefully now all is well. Looks like you had fun with your visitors and good food was abundant! May 2014 be good to you :)

    1. I wish all the best for you and your family Karen. Thankfully the rain has stopped but I think the main road into town is still closed.