Farro, also known as pharaoh's wheat, is an ancient grain that's all the rage these days. For the unfamiliar, this grain is easy to cook at home and works in endless dishes. Like this hearty vegetarian side from Andrew Carmellini of Leuca in Brooklyn.
The water-to-grain ratio in this recipe cooks just like rice. But the grain can also be prepared like a pasta—in a substantial amount of water and then drained once tender. Feel free to serve hot or at room temperature. Also, we serve this dish as a composed side, but it's also the perfect base for your next grain bowl and can be loaded with a variety of seasonal roast vegetables on top.
To learn more, read "Side Effects."
Farro Verde with Feta and Olives
Recipe adapted from Andrew Carmellini, Leuca, Brooklyn, NY
Yield: 4 to 6 servings
Prep Time: 15 minutes, plus cooling and resting time
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
3 cups water
Kosher salt, to taste
1½ cups farro verde
2 tablespoons olive oil
½ cup celery, diced, leaves reserved for garnish
½ cup fennel, diced, fennel fronds reserved for garnish
¼ cup red onion, diced
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
½ cup pitted Castelvetrano olives, quartered
2 tablespoons parsley, roughly chopped
1 tablespoon thyme leaves
Lemon juice, to taste
2 tablespoons crumbled feta cheese, for garnish
1. In a small saucepan, bring the water and salt to a boil over high heat, add the farro verde and bring the mixture to a boil. Reduce the heat to low, cover the pan partially with a lid and simmer until the farro verde is tender, 15 to 20 minutes.
2. Meanwhile, sweat the vegetables: In a large sauté pan, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the celery, fennel and red onion, and cook until tender, 7 to 9 minutes.
3. Add the cooked farro verde to the sauté pan along with the black pepper, olives and herbs. Season the farro verde mixture with salt and lemon juice. Transfer the farro verde to a serving platter and garnish with the feta cheese, celery leaves and fennel fronds, then serve.