crusty baked cauliflower and farro from smittenkitchn.com

1 cup dried farro
3 cups water or broth
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
Olive oil
2 1/4 to 2 1/2 pound head of cauliflower, cut into small florets
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh sage leaves
2 tablespoons capers (brine-packed), drained
2 large or 3 regular cloves garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
Crushed red pepper flakes, to taste
2 cups (6 ounces) coarsely grated, lightly packed Italian Fontina (Val d’Aosta variety, if you can find it) (buy about 8 ounces with rind)
1/2 cup  ricotta cheese
1/2 cup panko (plain Japanese-style breadcrumbs)
1/3 cup finely grated pecorino romano cheese
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh parsley leaves

Cook farro: Rinse and drain farro. There are many, many ways to cook farro and any of them work here. You can follow the package directions on any farro you buy for best results.
On the stove: If you plan to cook this on the stove and want to save time, you can presoak the grains overnight in their 3 cups of liquid and they should then cook in only 10 minutes of simmering. Otherwise, simmer the farro in water or broth for about 30 minutes, until quite tender. Drain any excess liquid. Transfer farro to large bowl.

In a rice-cooker: I cook mine on the quick setting and have been very happy with the results. Drain any excess liquid once the farro is tender. Transfer farro to large bowl.

Meanwhile, parcook cauliflower:

In the oven: Heat oven to 425 degrees. Brush a large baking sheet with 2 tablespoons olive oil. Spread florets in one layer, drizzle with 1 more tablespoon olive oil and sprinkle with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Roast for 20 minutes until lightly browned and crisp-tender (they will finish baking with the farro). Reduce heat to 400 degrees.

One the stove: Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large saute pan over medium-high heat. Add half the cauliflower and cook, tossing occasionally, until lightly browned and tender, about 6 to 7 minutes. Add to bowl with farro. Repeat with more olive oil and second half of cauliflower, then add to bowl. Heat oven to 400 degrees.

Assemble casserole: Add the sage, capers, garlic, lemon zest, red pepper flakes, 1 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon black pepper to cauliflower and farro and stir to combine. Stir in fontina. Transfer half of the mixture to an oiled 10-inch ovenproof frying pan or equivalent baking dish. Dollop rounded tablespoons of ricotta all over. Sprinkle remaining cauliflower and farro over the ricotta, leaving the pockets of it undisturbed.

In a small dish, combine panko with pecorino, parlsey and 1 tablespoon olive oil until evenly mixed. Sprinkle over cauliflower and farro.

Bake casserole: For 20 minutes, until browned and crusty on top. Dig in.

Do ahead: Farro can be cooked up to 3 days in advance, kept in an airtight container in fridge. Cauliflower can be cooked 2 days in advance. Casserole can be assembled and baked a day later, easily, although the crumbs might lose their crisp from absorbing the moisture below if not added right before baking. Casserole keeps for several days in fridge and longer in freezer.

butternut squash salad with farro and pepitas from smitten kitchen.com

1 medium butternut squash (about 2 pounds)
5 to 6 tablespoons olive oil, divided
Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1 cup semi-pearled farro (see Note up top)
1/3 cup toasted pepitas (I used, and love, the salted ones)
3 ounces ricotta salata or another salty cheese, crumbled or coarsely grated (about 3/4 cup)(omit to make vegan)
1 tablespoon sherry vinegar
1 tablespoon water
1/2 teaspoon table salt
1/2 teaspoon granulated sugar
1/2 small red onion, finely chopped

 

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

Peel squash, then halve lengthwise and scoop out seeds. Cut squash into approximately 3/4-inch chunks. Coat one large or two small baking sheets with 2 tablespoons oil total. Spread squash out in single layer on sheet. Sprinkle with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Roast until pieces are tender, about 30 to 40 minutes, turning them over halfway through the cooking time. Set aside to cool slightly.

While squash is roasting, cook farro in a large pot of simmering salted water until the grains are tender but chewy, about 30 minutes. (Since there are so many varieties of farro, however, if your package suggests otherwise, it’s best to defer to its cooking suggestion.) Drain and cool slightly.

While squash is roasting and farro is simmering, in a small bowl, whisk together sherry vinegar, water, 1/2 teaspoon table salt and granulated sugar until sugar and salt dissolve. Stir in onion; it will barely be covered by vinegar mixture but don’t worry. Cover and set in fridge until needed; 30 minutes is ideal but less time will still make a lovely, lightly pickled onion.

In a large bowl, mix together butternut squash, farro, red onion and its vinegar brine, the crumbled cheese and pepitas. Toss with 3 tablespoons of the remaining olive oil, use the 4th one only if needed. Taste and adjust seasonings. Eat now or later. Salad keeps in the fridge for up to a week.

Smitten Kitchen’s One-Pan Farro with Tomatoes

2 cups vegetable broth
1 cup semi-pearled farro
1/2 large onion, sliced into quarters and then sliced thinly
2 cloves garlic, sliced thin
8 to 10 oz. cherry tomatoes
1 1/4 tsp. kosher salt
1 tsp. crushed red pepper
1 tbsp. olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
Handful of basil leaves, julienned or 1 tsp dried basil
sprinkle of oregano
parsley
Grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese

Add broth and farro to a large sauce pan and soak 10 minutes. As you finish chopping your veg, add them one by one to the pan. Add salt and red pepper, basil, oregano and parsley followed by the olive oil.

Set the timer on your oven or microwave for 30 minutes, then turn the burner on high. Bring the pan, uncovered, to a boil then reduce heat to a simmer. Stir occasionally. At the end of the 30 minutes, the farro should be perfectly cooked and liquid absorbed.

Pour the contents of the pan into a shallow serving bowl. Sprinkle with the basil leaves and parm, then drizzle lightly with olive oil. Eat while hot.

 

Greek Grain Salad from lideystable.com

 

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  • 1½ cups farro
  • 2 red bell peppers, cut into ½-inch wide strips
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 1½ teaspoons minced fresh garlic (1 large clove)
  • 1 large English cucumber, seeded and cut into ½-inch dice
  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes, sliced in half lengthwise
  • ¾ cup minced red onion
  • ½ cup chopped fresh parsley
  • ½ cup pitted Kalamata olives
  • 8 ounces feta cheese, ½-inch diced
  • extra virgin olive oil
  • kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Preaheat the oven to 425 degrees.Combine the farro with 4 cups of water in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil, then lower the heat and simmer for 25-30 minutes, until the farro is just cooked. Drain and pour into a large bowl. Whisk together the lemon juice, vinegar, garlic, 3 tablespoons olive oil, 1 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Pour over the hot farro and stir well.

Meanwhile, place the red pepper slices on a half sheet pan and toss with 2 teaspoons olive oil and ¼ teaspoon salt. Roast for 20 minutes, turning once halfway through. Set the peppers aside to cool slightly.

Add the cucumber, tomatoes, red onion, roasted peppers, parsley and olives to the bowl with the farro. Stir until combined, then gently fold in the feta. Serve at room temperature.

 

one-pan farro with tomatoes from smittenkitchen.com

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2 cups water
1 cup farro
1/2 large onion (I usually use a white one, for mildness)
2 cloves garlic
9 ounces tomatoes
1 teaspoons kosher or coarse sea salt
Up to 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes (to taste)
1 tablespoon olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
Few basil leaves, cut into thin ribbons
Grated parmesan cheese, for serving (optional)

Place water and farro in a medium saucepan to presoak (I find just 5 to 10 minutes sufficient) while you prepare the other ingredients. Adding each ingredient to the pot as you finish preparing it, cut onion in half again, and very thinly slice it into quarter-moons. Thinly slice garlic cloves as well. Halve or quarter tomatoes. Add salt, pepper flakes (to taste) and 1 tablespoon olive oil to pan, and set a timer for 30 minutes. Bring uncovered pan (no lid necessary) up to a boil, then reduce to a gentle simmer, stirring occasionally. When the timer rings, the farro should be perfectly cooked (tender but with a meaty chew), seasoned and the cooking water should be almost completely absorbed. If needed, though I’ve never found it necessary, cook it for 5 additional minutes, until farro is more tender.

Transfer to a wide serving bowl. If there’s enough leftover cooking liquid to be bothersome, simply use a slotted spoon to leave the amount you wish to behind. Drizzle farro lightly with additional olive oil, scatter with basil and parmesan. Eat immediately. Serves: 4 as a side, 2 as a hearty main