Farro is an extremely nutritious wheat grain that is an excellent source of protein, fiber and nutrients. It’s a healthy and flavorful alternative to barley or rice, and makes for a very satisfying salad.
There are two approaches to this recipe: for a heartier version, sauté both the mushrooms and the spinach in a little olive oil before adding to the salad. For a lighter version, leave both of them raw. Both are great; it’s just enough of a slight variation to make them feel very different.
1 cup farro, cooked ahead of time: add the farro to a large pot of boiling salted water, reduce the heat to medium-high, and simmer for about 20 minutes, until it reaches the desired doneness. I like it cooked so that it is still a bit al dente. Drain and allow to cool.
8 oz. mushrooms, fresh or sautéed
½ lb. asparagus, sliced into bite-sized pieces, blanched in boiling water for 2-3 minutes and drained
½ lb. feta cheese, diced or crumbled
2-3 cups spinach, fresh or sautéed (*If sautéing, increase the amount to 4 cups as it will cook down quite a bit).
1 can white beans (navy, great northern, cannellini are each great choices), drained
2 Tb capers
½ a red onion, diced
½ cup roasted red peppers, diced
1 cup crumbled cooked bacon (optional)
For the dressing:
1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
2/3 cup olive oil
1 Tb dried oregano,
3-4 cloves fresh garlic, peeled and crushed
Salt and pepper to taste
Whisk together the dressing ingredients and then toss together with the salad ingredients.
Serves 4 as a main course, 6 as a side