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Beef, Bean, and Swiss Chard Ragout Over Polenta


Angelo Garro has been a part of the Bay Area food scene for years. His Omnivore Salt company has been making the world more delicious, and if you get a chance to meet him, you are in for a treat. He's one of our favorite people, and we're happy he shared this delicious recipe, perfect for the coming colder months.


  • 2 pounds beef stew meat, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons Omnivore Porcini Salt Blend
  • ½ cup dry Rancho Gordo Alubia Blanca or Marcella beans, picked over and rinsed
  • 2 cups diced tomatoes
  • 1 cup red wine
  • 1 pound Swiss chard, cut lengthwise in half, then crosswise into 1-inch pieces (about 10 cups)
  • 2 tablespoons shredded Parmesan cheese


  • 3 cups whole milk
  • 1 cup Rancho Gordo fine yellow polenta
  • 3 ounces finely grated Parmesan (about 1½ cups)
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • ¼ to ½ teaspoon Omnivore Porcini Salt Blend

Serves 4 to 6


  1. Soak the beans for 4 to 5 hours (optional). Drain off the water. Add 4 cups fresh cold water and the beans into a large pot and bring to a boil; boil for 10 minutes. Reduce heat to a slow, gentle simmer and cook until beans are soft, 45 minutes to 2 hours. Test beans periodically to see if they are fully cooked and soft, but not falling apart.
  2. Heat oil in large stockpot over medium heat until hot. Season the meat with Omnivore Porcini Salt Blend. Brown half of the beef; remove from stockpot. Repeat with remaining beef.
  3. Return all the beef to the stockpot with the drippings. Over medium heat, add the red wine, 2 cups of water, and tomatoes; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover tightly and simmer 1¼ hours. Stir in Swiss chard and beans; return to a boil. Reduce heat; continue simmering, covered, 30 to 90 minutes, until beef pulls apart with a fork.
  4. Adjust salt with a sprinkle or two of Omnivore Porcini Salt blend as desired.


  1. Bring milk and 3 cups water to a boil over medium-high heat in a medium saucepan. Reduce heat to medium. Whisking constantly, gradually add polenta; bring to a simmer. Reduce heat to low, cover pan, and cook, whisking every 10 to 15 minutes, until thickened and no longer gritty, 30 to 35 minutes.
  2. Remove from heat and add Parmesan, butter, and Omnivore Porcini Salt Blend. Cook, whisking, until butter and cheese are melted and polenta is the consistency of porridge, about 1 minute.
  3. To serve, make bowls with a cup of polenta on the bottom and a heaping portion of the beef ragout on top. Dust with grated Parmesan cheese to finish!


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