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Let's Dish With Linda Lou

Sharing My Recipes, My Life, And The Food Tale Of Two Cities

Farro Breakfast Bowl

Farro Breakfast Bowl (3)

Farro is an ancient grain from Rome. Its delicious nutty flavor, and slightly chewy texture, reminds me a lot of barley. Farro has been a long time coming. You just couldn’t get your hands on it anywhere! Now, it’s readily available in your local grocery store.

I’m showing two pictures here, one above, topped with an egg, and one below without. That’s where Steve and I have a strong difference of opinion. I’m not even sure if “opinion” is the even the right word. I’m no fan of the fried egg.  To be fair though, eggs are a big part of breakfast and Steve loves them, so that’s the reason for two pictures.

Anyway, this Farro breakfast bowl is easy to make while combining flavor, color, and texture. Here’s how this dish comes together.

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Let’s talk about Farro

 

I took a screenshot of this brand, because it’s the one I’m used for this dish. You know I love to take help from the grocery store, this cooks up in about 25 minutes, and includes some Porcini mushrooms. I’m SOLD!

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Yields: 4 servings
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes
Equipment: large saute pan, sauce pan with tight fitting lid.

Ingredients:
1 package of cooked Farro with Porcini mushrooms
1 pound, cooked bulk Italian sausage ( casings removed)
1 small can white shoepeg corn (rinsed and drained)
1 cup diced red bell pepper ( 1 med size pepper)
1 cup diced yellow bell pepper ( 1 med size pepper)
1 cup diced yellow onion
1/2 cup diced carrots
1 tablespoon minced garlic (3 cloves)
1 tablespoon Kosher salt
1 teaspoon of freshly cracked black pepper
1/4 cup Pistachios (optional)
7 ounces diced Feta cheese
1/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
2 tablespoons of freshly chopped basil
2 tablespoons of freshly chopped chives
2 tablespoons of freshly chopped mint
1 fried egg (optional, cooked to the temperature of your choosing)

Instuctions For Farro:
Cooking Time: 25 minutes
Follow the instructions on the back of the package. Feel free to use either water or unsalted chicken stock for cooking the Farro. In place of the butter on the package, I use olive oil. Cook the sausage while the Farro is cooking.

Directions:
Start by cooking the Farro. While the Farro is cooking on very low heat, in a large non-stick saute pan on medium heat, start browning off the Italian sausage. I don’t add any oil to the pan because the sausage will release its own fat, plus it browns nicely. Use a wooden spoon to break up the sausage. Don’t worry about the sausage bits sticking to the pan because once the vegetables are added, they will release their water which will allow those bits to be released. Once the sausage is about 70% cooked, and there is no more pink color showing, add in the vegetables, Kosher salt and black pepper.  Continue stirring, and scraping as much of those brown bits off the bottom of the pan, that’s all flavor! Saute until the onions are translucent, all the vegetables have softened and the sausage is nicely browned and fully cooked.

In a large bowl, add the cooked Farro and shoepeg white corn. Using a slotted spoon, add the sausage and vegetable mixture. Next, add the pistachios (optional),  Parmesan cheese, diced feta cheese, and fresh herbs, then toss.

Finish by adding the Farro mixture into a serving bowl and top with a fried egg, or not. Serve hot!

 

 

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Farro With Grapes, Nuts, And Dried Fruit

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From what I’ve learned, Farro is one of the oldest grains in the world.  It’s composed of the grains from certain wheat species. It’s believed that this grain was the one from which all others were derived. Not until recently was Farro so easy to find in the grocery stores however; it’s now available, where the rice and dried beans are found.

Farro is softened in water and cooked until al dente. Like rice and barley, Farro is a blank canvas. You can add whatever flavors you like to Farro and it while only enhance the dish.

I’ve made Farro as a side dish, using chicken or vegetable broth as my liquid, and then  adding asparagus and mushrooms. There have been times where I’ve made Farro is the style of risotto, using  white wine, Parmesan cheese, and other ingredients to flavor the dish. Commonly served as a savory dish, I thought I’d put a twist on the usual Farro recipes. A light and healthy, good for you, sweet snack.  A dish you could have as dessert!

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Start by placing the Farro in a fine mesh sieve, rinse with cold water, then drain.

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Bring the Farro in the cooking liquid up to a boil, reduce the heat to low, cover and cook for 25-30 minutes. I want the Farro to be softened but still chewy, al dente.

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I started with some raspberry glazed almonds I found. I thought they’d work perfect in this dish. You could of course use hazelnuts, walnuts, whatever you have on hand. I also have some dried cherries, dried apricots, golden raisins, pineapple chunks, and green grapes. Before adding in the other ingredients, I add all these ingredients to the bowl with the Farro and toss. That’s all there is to it!  Believe me when I tell you, this dish is so addictive.  Look, rice is also commonly served as a savory dish, but as a dessert, rice pudding is also amazing. Why not put a sweet twist on Farro.

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Yields: 4 servings
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 25-30 minutes
Best served warm or at room temperature

Ingredients:
1 1/2 cups of rinsed and drained Farro
4 cups of water
1/2 cup of dark amber *Agave nectar (liquid measure)
1/4 teaspoon of Kosher salt
1/2 cup of whole seedless green grapes then halved
1/4 cup of chopped dried cherries
1/4 cup of chopped dried apricots
1/4 cup of golden raisins
1/4 cup of chopped raspberry glazed almonds ( nuts of your choice)
1/4 c up of diced pineapple chunks

Directions:
Place 1 1/2 cups of Farro in a mesh sieve, rinse and drain. In a sauce pot on medium high heat add in the 4 cups of water salt, and the Agave nectar. Give that a good stir before adding in the drained Farro. Stirring occasionally to prevent and Farro sticking together, bring the Farro up to a boil. Reduce the heat to low heat, cover, cooking for 25-30 minutes. Pour the cooked Farro through a mesh sieve again draining off any liquid that may remain. Next, transfer the Farro into a large bowl. I like to toss the Farro a couple of times to bring the temperature down a bit. Then add in all the other ingredients and toss to combine. The cold grapes and pineapple mixed in with the warm Farro is awesome!

*Agave Nectar is a natural sweetener that come in light or dark amber.

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Cooking With Farro

Oven Pan Roasted Pork Over Farro With Cranberries And Pineapple

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Farro can now be found in any local grocery store. It also can be used interchangeably with Barley. Farro has a nutty texture and usually requires soaking in water before cooking. You want to cook farro similar to how you cook pasta, al dente.

I’m going to add a few ingredients to the Farro to kick it up a bit; The Farro will act as a bed for my Oven Pan Roasted Pork Loin.

I’d better get started. I’ll post the finished dish later and let you know how Steve likes farro.

I received some great news, a long time friend of mine Beth has opened Beth’s Burger Bar. I found out today I’ve been invited to go and see how the burgers are made and take some pictures too. I’ll be hanging out with Jerry, the general manager, and owner Beth, so excited. I’m sure I’ll have a lot to talk about next week.

Yields: 4 servings
Cook time: 25-30 minutes

Ingredients:
2 cups farro
4 cups unsalted chicken broth, or water (or a mixture of both)
1/4 teaspoon Kosher salt
1 tablespoon olive oil or butter (optional)
1/4 cup dried cranberries
1/4 cup dried pineapple
2 tablespoon pistachios, chopped

Directions:
Measure 2 cups of farro into a fine mesh sieve and rinse with cold water. Drain. Transfer to a medium-size saucepot that has a lid.  Add the water or broth and salt. Bring to a boil over high heat.

Reduce the heat to low, cover and cook for 25-30 minutes until it is softened but still chewy, al dente. If there is still liquid remaining in the pot, drain it off.

Place the farro back into the same pot. Add the cranberries, dried pineapple, chopped pistachios, and olive oil or butter if using. Use a fork to gently fluff the ingredients through the farro. Transfer to a serving bowl.

 

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Stocked Pantry

A well stocked pantry has saved me on so many nights.  There have been many times where I’ve had to make a meal using just pantry items.  A quick Minestrone soup  or Quinoa with dried fruit and nuts.  Farro with dried fruit, for a sweet snack.

I like to keep my favorite jarred tomato sauce on hand when I need a quick and easy pasta with tomato sauce.

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