Farro is a variety of wheat cultivated in Italy and across the Mediterranean. Its protein and fiber content makes it especially nutritious, and the nutty flavor and chewy texture make it perfect for hearty soups and salads.
Like bulgur and other grains, farro is sold whole-grain, semi-pearled, or pearled, which refers to the presence or absence of the natural germ and bran. Whole-grain includes both the germ and bran, semi-pearled contains a partial amount, and pearled means that the germ and bran were removed during hulling. While the whole-grain variety is the highest in nutritional value, all types are good for you—and the pearled and semi-pearled cook more quickly.
There are many methods of cooking farro, but the one I like best is simply to treat it like pasta. Stir it into a pot of boiling, salted water and cook until al dente—25 to 30 minutes for pearled or semi-pearled. Give it a taste after 25 minutes to check the texture. Slightly chewy is good.
This easy, one-dish dinner is as flavorful as it is nutritious—all good, no guilt.
Tip: Mix warm chicken breast into the salad just before serving to slightly wilt the spinach leaves.
- 1/2 cup pearled or semi-pearled farro
- 3 tbsp fresh lemon juice, plus lemon wedges for serving
- 3 tbsp olive oil, plus more for serving
- 2 tsp honey
- 3/4 lb warm, cooked chicken breast, cut into bite-sized pieces
- 2 cups baby spinach leaves
- 1/3 cup thinly sliced red bell pepper
- 1/3 cup thinly sliced red onion
- 1/4 cup chopped mint leaves