Friday, June 18, 2010

Farro Salad with Feta

If farro was easier to find and cheaper to buy, it would probably be my favorite whole grain. Maybe it would be my favorite grain or any type, if it was cheap and easy enough to experiment with, but for now it's a special item in my kitchen.

Cooked,  farro has a nice chew, but it doesn't harden up when it's cold like some rices do. It's got a nice flavor, but it also plays the background role nicely.

Dried farro reminds me of really plump wheat berries, and they look tough. They look like there might be a nasty husk to deal with, but that isn't the case. The outer portion isn't tough or husk-like at all after cooking, and the cooked farro reminds me of popped popcorn, with the white interior burst outward.

If you can't find farro, this makes a nice pasta salad with orzo pasta.

I started with 1 cup of dry farro, cooked with 3 cups of water in my rice cooker, set on the "brown rice" setting. Or just follow package direction for stovetop cooking. Then I chilled it in the fridge before mixing, but in retrospect, I could have assembled it when it was warm, and chilled it all together.

The measurements are approximate, and you can certain increase, decrease, add or eliminate ingredients as you desire. If you prefer fresh herbs, feel free to substitute fresh for the dried, but since this is something that will be hanging in my fridge for several days

If you don't have meyer lemon olive oil, regular olive oil is fine. You could add some lemon zest or a squeeze of lemon, if you prefer.

Farro Salad with Feta

1 cup dry farro, cooked to yield about 3 1/2 cups cooked
1/4 medium onion, finely diced
1/2  large tomato, diced
1/2 English cucumber, diced
1/2 roasted red pepper, diced
4 oz. feta cheese, crumbled
1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano
2 tablespoons capers
meyer lemon olive oil, to taste
red wine vinegar, to taste
salt and pepper, to taste

Mix it all together and let it sit in the fridge for at least an hour before serving.

I think it's better the next day, and when I make this it usually lasts several days for lunch and/or as a side dish with dinner.