It’s the season of picnics, BBQ’s, potlucks, and outdoor dinners. It’s a great time to NOT slave away over your stove. It’s almost the time of garden tomatoes and cucumbers. It’s a great time for farro salad.
Think pasta salad, but with whole-grain chewy goodness instead of limp pasta (not that I have anything against pasta). Before you run away thinking that farro is too weird and too unfamilar and “where would I buy it anyway?!” let me explain. Farro is worth it! It is worth trying something new! It is worth strolling around your grocery store for an extra minute to find it. It is a chewy, delicious whole grain that has lots of fiber and protein (similar to quinoa, higher protein than brown rice). It is an ancient form of wheat, so if you’re gluten intolerant you might want to try brown rice or oat groats instead. If you’re not gluten intolerant though, I really hope you’ll try farro. It’s so delicious!
Check the health foods section of your grocery store, where the Bob’s Red Mill products are. You might also check the bulk bins or the rice/quinoa aisle. It cost me about $5 for a package that allowed me to make this salad three times. You could also order it on Amazon, just click here. (affiliate link)
Enjoy this hearty salad that has a delicious oil-free basil dressing that compliments the tomatoes and cucumbers so well. Even though it’s a perfect side dish, we love to eat this as a main dish (because, honestly, I’m too lazy to cook multiple recipes for dinner, most of the time). Cook your farro in advance, and this recipe comes together very quickly without turning on the oven.
Chop 4 vegetables (or more, add whatever you like in your pasta salad).
Stir up a quick dressing.
You’ll be resisting the urge to eat this straight from the serving bowl!
A delicious grain salad that is perfect for summer potlucks or a flavorful side dish.
- 1.5 cup farro, uncooked
- 1 tsp salt
- 6 cups water or vegetable broth (if using veg broth, omit the salt)
- 2 green onions, sliced thin
- 1 carrot, grated
- 2 cups chopped tomatoes
- 1 cucumber, diced
- 1/3 cup chopped walnuts or sunfower seeds (optional, but the extra crunch is nice)
- 3 tbsp red wine vinegar
- 3 tsp dijon mustard
- 1 tbsp maple syrup or honey
- 3/4 tsp dried basil (or 2 tsp fresh basil, minced)
- 1/4 tsp each, salt and pepper
- 1 clove garlic, minced
Put the farro in a pot, and cover with water. Add salt or vegetable broth base.
Set to high heat. When it starts to boil, reduce to medium heat and set timer for 30 minutes. Drain through a colandar and set aside.
Meanwhile, chop vegetables.
Combine dressing ingredients in a small bowl.
Toss all together and let sit for at least 30 minutes, ideally, to let flavors meld and the sharpness of the raw garlic to subside.
Garnish with chopped cilantro or parsely, if desired