I'm always looking for fun ways to use grains in my meals. I am a total carb fiend. Definitely not the best for me, but I love them and can't stay away.
I try to get whole grains in to my meals as much as possible. One of my favorite grains is farro. Farro is a variety of wheat and can be cooked in a multitude of ways, with several delicious outcomes. Around the High Holidays, I cooked up a creamy risotto style farro, which was amazing. More recently, I decided to go with a simpler approach. I wanted a dish that would taste great - both as a room temperature salad and also when served warm, fresh from the stove. This farro dish fits that need.
Farro Salad with Carrots, Mushrooms and Wilted Spinach
1 cup farro
2 cups vegetable or chicken broth
1/2 tbsp. olive oil
3 shallots chopped
4 cloves garlic, chopped
2 tsp. lemon zest
1 tsp. red pepper flakes
2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. ground pepper
1 cup shredded carrots
5 oz. mushrooms, sliced
1.5 cups baby spinach
additional salt and pepper to taste
Place the farro in a pot over medium-high heat. Pour in the vegetable broth. Let the mixture come to a boil. Once it's boiling, reduce the heat to medium low and cover the pot. Check on the farro every few minutes and stir a little. Once all of the liquid has evaporated, fluff the farro with a fork and remove from the heat. Set aside.
Heat up the olive oil in a large saute pan. Add in the shallots, garlic, lemon zest, red pepper flakes, salt and pepper. Cook the mixture for a few minutes until softened. Add in the carrots and the mushrooms and cook for a few more minutes. Do not overcook. You want the veggies to have a bit of a bite left. Once the mushrooms are slightly cooked, turn off the heat.
Stir in the baby spinach and let it wilt a bit. Take a bite. Add in additional salt and pepper if necessary.
Mix in the already cooked farro.
Serve warm or cool down and serve room temperature. It's excellent either way.