Farro is related to the common wheat we eat; it is especially popular in Italy. It is an ancient grain called emmer wheat. Once boiled, it has a chewy firm texture and a nutty flavor. I have to say I just love it. The farro I buy takes about 20 minutes to boil. Farro can be used for salads, soups, side dishes, or as a main entree.
Since I started making farro, it is my new go-to for a cold salad instead of making a pasta salad. It is always a hit. I also make it for myself and the kids for weekday lunches. I make a bowl of it, store it in the frig, and it is a great side to a sandwich or it can be a lunch in itself. It is nice to have on hand if a fellow mommy stops by; it is easy to pull out and lunch is ready.
So depending on what I plan on using it for, that determines what veggies I put in it. If I am making it as a side to a family meal or a party I can use items that should to be consumed the day I make it or the next day. If I am making this for myself and the kids for the week, I use veggies that will stand up to a longer stay in the frig. In the recipe below I will note veggies for a long frig stay (Lfs) vs. short frig stay (Sfs). You can create this recipe for your family's likes and needs.
1 cup of farro, boiled per directions on bag
shelled and boiled edamame (soybean) - Lfs
Kalamata olives - Lfs
red peppers, chopped - Lfs
carrots, chopped - Lfs
cucumbers, deseeded and chopped - Sfs
cherry tomatoes, whole - Lfs
feta (or any cheese you want -- ricotta salata works well too) - Lfs
baby spinach - Sfs
defrosted, frozen sweet peas - Lfs
zucchini - Sfs
*any veggie you want (make it your own)
Boil farro according to directions on bag, drain, and set aside. *mommy hint - if making it to serve right away, you might want to stick it in the frig to cool it down. While farro is cooking, I start to assemble veggies in a bowl and make my dressing. So when the farro is cooled, I toss it all together and dress it. It is so yummy -- bye bye pasta salad.
1-2 rounded teaspoon Dijon mustard
2 Tablespoons red wine vinegar
5-6 Tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
Put mustard, vinegar, a bit of salt, and a bit of pepper in a bowl. While mixing with a fork or wire whisk, add oil in slowly. Taste -- add more salt or pepper if needed.