I was recently perusing the aisles at Trader Joe’s and I came across a package of 10-minute farro. I used to make farro salad quite often, but somehow it fell out of my meal rotation. I got into it when I was studying to become a health coach, and I was trying out new foods. A few years ago I had surgery, and in my anesthetized state, I was introduced to the resident doctor that had been assigned to me – Dr. Farrow. “Oh, like the salad!” I said to a bunch of blank stares. “It must be the anesthesia,” was the response. No, I really was thinking of salad.
Farro is an ancient grain
Farro is an ancient grain from the wheat family. There are actually three different kinds of farro: einkorn, emmer, and spelt. Emmer is what’s usually found for sale here in the U.S. It’s full of fiber, protein, and b vitamins, as well as antioxidants and minerals, so it has many health benefits.
I picked up a package of Trader Joe’s 10-minute farro, looking forward to making a tasty dish with it. With autumn on the horizon, I thought it would be fun to make a salad with some of my favorite seasonal foods, such as apples and cranberries. This dish is sort of like a fall version of my Potluck Worthy Rice Salad.
Toasting the pecans really brings out their flavor. You can toast them in a dry pan on the stove over medium heat. Simply stir them occasionally. Or you can pop them in the toaster oven for about 10 minutes. It’s important to keep an eye on them however you cook them, though, as they can go from almost-done to super-burnt in a matter of seconds. I know this from lots of experience!
This farro salad recipe is very flexible, so you can use just about any type of fruit and nuts you have on had. If you can’t find farro, wheat berries will work just as well. I like to use flavored balsamic vinegar when I make it. I just picked up a bottle of black cherry balsamic that tastes amazing in this dish.
Farro Salad with Apples and Pecans
- 1 cup farro
- 2 cups vegetable stock or water
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
- ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1 apple diced
- 3 cups loosely packed baby kale coarsely chopped
- ½ cup pecans coarsely chopped and toasted
- ¼ cup dried cranberries
Cook the farro in the stock or water according to the directions on the package. Allow it to cool.
In a small bowl, whisk together the olive oil, balsamic vinegar, lemon juice, salt, and pepper.
In a large bowl, combine the farro, the apple, baby kale, pecans and cranberries. Gently mix to combine everything together. Fold in the dressing.
Serve cold or at room temperature.
Other salads you might enjoy include: