Insalata di Farro e Verdure (Farro and Vegetable Salad)

28 Apr

The fresh vegetables make this salad a perfect and colorful dish to celebrate the flavors of spring.  Farro is an ancient grain, a variety of wheat called emmer.  It was used by the Etruscans, Egyptians and the Romans. Nowadays it is cultivated especially in northern Tuscany, in the province of Lucca. Farro has a delicious nutty and earthy texture that makes it a wonderful choice for entrees, soups, side dishes and salads. It is a versatile ingredient, as well as being highly nutritious. Farro is rich in proteins, dietary fibers and magnesium; it is a good source of vitamin A, C, E and vitamin B complex, and it is low in fat. It has a very low glycemic index, making it also suitable for diabetics. I use farro perlato (pearled farro, from which a portion of the outer bran has been removed) instead of whole farro for my recipes, because it cooks faster and does not requiring soaking. In fact, farro perlato cooks in only 20 minutes. This is a quick, easy and tasty recipe to prepare, something you can eat either warm or cold. The sautéed and sweetly flavored vegetables combined with the nutty farro make an irresistible vegetarian dish.

Preparation time: 35 minutes                            Servings: 8

Insalata di Farro

320 g (1 ½ cups) farro perlato
8 tablespoons olive oil (Extra Virgin)
1 medium onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves
1 red chili pepper, finely sliced
3 carrots, finely cubed
1 red pepper, finely cubed
1 fennel, finely cubed
3 zucchini, finely cubed
250 g (2 cups) fresh peas (or frozen)
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
Parsley, basil or mint for decoration

1. Rinse the farro in cold water and drain
2. Bring 4 cups of salted water (about 7 g,  1 ½  teaspoons of salt) to boil, add the farro, reduce heat and cook covered with a lid for 20 minutes (cook according to the directions on the package).  It should be firm and chewy
3. While the farro is cooking, in a non-stick pan sauté scallions, garlic and red chilli pepper in olive oil over medium heat for 4 minutes, stirring frequently
4. Add the carrots and pepper, toss for a few minutes
5. Add the fennel and zucchini, cook for 5 minutes. At this point add the peas and cook for additional 3-4 minutes stirring a few times to prevent burning. The cooking time for the vegetables can vary according to your taste: crispy versus soft and well cooked.  I go for crispy!
6. After 20 minutes drain the farro and add it to the vegetables. Toss to mix all the ingredients well! Add salt and pepper to taste.  You can serve it either warm or cold. Decorate with parsley, basil or mint.

Note: Instead of farro perlato you can use regular farro (cooking time is different) or any large grain. I would suggest brown rice for a gluten free version. -Paola

23 Responses to “Insalata di Farro e Verdure (Farro and Vegetable Salad)”

  1. Adri May 3, 2013 at 5:39 pm #

    Oh my, but I thought I had left a comment for you long ago. I bet I was remembering Facebook. Forgive my tardiness, please. I love Farro and veg salads. We eat them all summer long. This one looks wonderful!

  2. Passion and Cooking May 5, 2013 at 9:17 am #

    Thanks Adri! You are always so sweet to leave a comment! I do appreciate it! I love Farro too, especially Farro Salad!

    • mariangela May 8, 2013 at 9:00 am #

      Ciao carissima piacere di conoscerti sto arrivando dal blog di Chiara, complimenti per questa bellissima ricetta. Buon mercoledì

      • Passion and Cooking May 8, 2013 at 12:51 pm #

        Ciao Mariangela, piacere mio di conoscerti e grazie per il tuo commento! Buon mercoledi e a presto

  3. Ketty V. May 8, 2013 at 11:45 am #

    Ciao Arriva dal blog di Chiara Giglio,complimenti per tutto e per questa magnifica insalata di Primavera!

  4. clarapasticciaClara May 8, 2013 at 12:12 pm #

    hi dear! I arrive from La Voglia Matta, Chiara’s blog! You have a splendid cooking blog and it’s a plesaure to be here … now I’m sure I’ll be very happy to read other recipes … there are a lot of interesting titles!! Clara

    • Passion and Cooking May 8, 2013 at 1:27 pm #

      Hi Clara! Thanks for stopping by! You are very sweet and I do appreciate your comment! Look forward to reading your future comments! Thanks again, Paola

  5. daniela64 May 8, 2013 at 1:05 pm #

    Ciao arrivo ora dal blog di Chiara,e un piacere fare la conoscenza del tue blog ricco di ricette molto interessanti. Buona giornata Daniela.

    • Passion and Cooking May 8, 2013 at 1:25 pm #

      Ciao Daniela, mi fa piacere che il mio blog ti piaccia:) Grazie e buona giornata

  6. Simona May 8, 2013 at 9:03 pm #

    Ciao Paola! Arrivo anch’io dal blog di Chiara…e sono anch’io di Como! Piacere di conoscerti:)
    Bellissimo il tuo blog!!! Buona serata!

    • Passion and Cooking May 8, 2013 at 9:21 pm #

      Ciao Simona! Grazie per il tuo gentile commento. Ho visitato il tuo blog, buone le ricette e belle le fotografie!!!! Essendo anche tu di Como, magari un giorno ci incontriamo. Buona serata, Paola

  7. sississima May 9, 2013 at 10:46 am #

    vengo dal blog di Chiara, che ringrazio per avermi fatto conoscere questo tuo bel blog, un abbraccio SILVIA

    • Passion and Cooking May 9, 2013 at 3:32 pm #

      Grazie Silvia, sei gentilissima! Ti aspetto anche in futuro! Un abbaccio Paola

  8. Giovanna bianco May 9, 2013 at 4:09 pm #

    Grazie a Chiara ti sto conoscendo, complimenti per il blog e per le tue ottime ricette. Ciao.

    • Passion and Cooking May 9, 2013 at 5:49 pm #

      Grazie Giovanna! Cucinare é la mia passione e sono contenta che sono riuscita a trasmetterla ai miei lettori! A presto, Paola

  9. Carla May 9, 2013 at 6:01 pm #

    Anch’io arrivo dal blog di Chiara, complimenti per il tuo bel blog e per questa bella insalata

    • Passion and Cooking May 9, 2013 at 6:21 pm #

      Ciao Carla, grazie e complimenti per il tuo blog. Le ricette sono interessanti ed invitanti! Paola

  10. Licia May 9, 2013 at 9:09 pm #

    Ciao Paola,arrivo dal blog di Chiara,complimenti per il tuo blog e per questo magnifico piatto!

  11. Adri May 10, 2013 at 6:02 pm #

    Congratulations on Blogs Got Talent!! You are now a member of a very exclusive club!

  12. Chiara May 12, 2013 at 7:21 am #

    cara Paola, sono veramente felice che le mie amiche siano passate a leggere il tuo blog, merita davvero tanta visibilità! Un abbraccio e a presto !

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