Marilyn’s Farro Salad with Pita and Feta
Wine suggestion: Bethel Heights Pinot Blanc
Serves 4 as main entrée
This recipe was adapted from Cooking Light September issue, 2013. Farro is a delightful grain, chewy and nutty, now becoming available in grocery stores. I served this hearty salad with grilled chicken thighs but it can definitely stand alone. We made some “tweaks” both in procedure and added ingredients. In particular, the grain is best cooked at least a day ahead to soak in the flavor of the dressing. Also, juicing a lime just before the salad is served adds a special zing.
- 2 T extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 T fresh lemon juice
- 2 T chopped green onions
- 2 ts chopped fresh oregano
- 1/4 ts black pepper
- 2 ½ cups cooked, whole-grain farro, cooked according to the package directions ( I cooked it like pasta, draining it when done). Whole grain may take as long as an hour to become au dente. I have noted variation depending on the supplier. Start faro two days ahead; soak overnight in water to cover by double. Cook it day two for serving day three or even four. It holds well.
- 1 cup seeded and chopped tomatoes ( I used fresh Romas)
- 1 cup cucumber, peeled, seeded and thinly sliced
- 1 cup canned chickpeas, rinsed and drained
- 1 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
- I added ½ chopped red pepper and 1 T finely chopped garlic
- 1 ts kosher salt
- 2 six-inch whole-wheat pita breads
- Cooking spray
- 1/8 ts paprika (I used smoked)
- 1 lime, juiced, just before serving
- ¼ cup reduced-fat cream cheese, softened
- 1.5 ounces feta cheese, crumbled (about ¼ cup)
Combine cooked farro, chickpeas, oregano and minced garlic with olive oil and lemon juice. Cover and refrigerate.
Finishing the dish:
Bring farro mixture to room temperature
Preheat oven to 350.
Combine farro mixture with onions, black pepper, tomatoes, red pepper, cucumber and parsley. Let stand at room temperature at least 15 minutes. Salt and more pepper to taste.
Preparing pita bread:
Cut two pita breads into 6 wedges each. Lightly coat pita with cooking spray; sprinkle with paprika. Arrange pita wedges on a baking sheet; bake for 15 minutes or until crisp.
Combine yogurt, 2 T water, cream cheese and feta. Stir with a whisk. Serve with pita chips accompanying the salad.