- 1 onion minced
- 2 cloves of garlic chopped
- 1 large carrots cut into small bite sized pieces
- 2 stalks of celery chopped
- 1 chili pepper (optional)
- 4 cups of veggie broth
- 1 14.5 oz can of whole tomatoes chopped or broken up with your hands
- 1 1/4 cup farro
- 1 1/2 cups of cannellini beans (1 cup mushed, 1/2 cup whole)
- handful of basil and parsley chopped
- greens (kale or spinach, any cabbage would work great in this)
i have always wanted to try farro. it’s been on my list of things to cook for ages. what better way to celebrate meatless monday then with a dish that is not just full of onions, garlic and tomatoes but also beans and greens. not to mention, farro is full of all sorts of good stuff that make you feel good.
i’ve been doing my research (kind of). farro is one of the earliest grains ever cultivated. it was once considered the poor mans food. (remember i just cook, please correct me if i am wrong). most websites that i have gone through say farro is actually an excellent source of complex carbohydrates, it has two times the amount of protein and and fiber then wheat. there is actually something in farro that can stimulate your immune system and lower your cholesterol. really you might ask? yes really, i was shocked too.
i found all that really cool. something yummy that can stimulate my immune system, i can see us eating tons of this during the winter when everyone is stuck inside sharing germs.
i don’t come across farro often. mostly i see it at whole foods where i tend to go more often during the colder months when there are no farmer’s markets. i thought farro would be more of a winter food. it seemed hearty and filling (and it is). i was totally wrong. of course farro would be great in winter stews or soups, add potatoes maybe even add it to a beef stew, but farro would also make a fabulous salad. add some chopped tomatoes, olives, cheese, it would be a great side to a chicken or even a steak dinner…
last night i made a farro and bean stew. it was chilly outside but it was also still summery out. the birds were chirping and the kids were running around outside barefoot still in shorts. i kept it light with whole tomatoes and cannellini beans. the fresh herbs made every ingredient more vibrant. the carrots were wonderfully sweet and the garlic really brought out the flavor of the onions and the last addition greens, perfect.
a small side note on the beans: i used 1.5 cups of beans for this recipe. to thicken the broth i decided to roughly mash 1 cup of the beans before adding it to the stew. the other 1/2 cup, whole and straight into the pot.
- in a soup pot or dutch oven saute your onion, garlic, chili pepper (if using), carrot and celery. cook for about 5-10 minutes.
- when the veg starts to soften: add your stock, tomatoes, farro, herbs, and beans. mix and bring to a boil then immediately to low simmer.
- cook on your stove top for about an hour or until veg are cooked an farro is not hard.
- after about 50 minutes or so of cooking, add your chopped greens, mix and cover. cook for about 5-10 minutes more or until greens are cooked.
- open your pot up, take a look. mix around. season with some salt (you will need some salt) serve.
i plated this with a little olive oil and a sprinkle of parm.
very yummy and believe it or not, a light meal. it took the chill out of the air, j even asked me to save some for tonight’s dinner!