Who here is a fan of farro? I’ll admit I’ve never had farro in savory applications until recently. Sweet, however, is a totally different matter. Growing up, ever so often, my aunt would make me a dessert that is very popular in my home country, which involves a combination of farro, sugar, cinnamon, chopped nuts and sometimes lemon. I used to love this dessert so much that I would often dream of it – yes, really 🙂 Coming in contact with the cooked farro, the nuts would turn into a velvety mass of milky goodness – and that’s exactly why I liked this dessert so much. What’s not to love about a creamy, ever so comforting sweet treat?
My farro repertoire has expanded recently, and for a good reason. I’ve been trying to find ways to use up a boatload of organic farro I got on sale from the grocery store – and in the process, I came up with a simple recipe for a vegan farro salad we absolutely love.
This recipe uses 2 cups of cooked farro. Boil the farro according to the instructions on the packet, and store the unused farro in the fridge for up to one week.
What makes this recipe unique is that it uses farro in combination with chayote squash, which in my opinion is a painfully underrated veggie. We really like the sharp, crisp flavor of chayote and its apple-like texture, and I think these qualities make chayote particularly suitable for use in salads.
While the farro cools down a bit, proceed to prepare the veggies. Grate the chayote and red cabbage, chop the fresh parsley and oregano, and halve the cherry tomatoes. In a separate small mixing bowl, make a simple vinaigrette.
Put the farro and all the prepped veggies together in a large bowl, and pour the vinaigrette on top. Mix until well combined and taste for salt and pepper. Once done, allow the salad to chill in the fridge until serving time.
You can add grated parmesan or grana padano to the mix – the salad will turn from vegan into vegetarian, but that’s OK (says I, the ultimate cheeseaholic, lol)
This farro salad is easy to make and keeps well in the fridge for a couple of days. The addition of chayote squash provides crunchy freshness, which is beautifully balanced by the assertive notes of chopped herbs. Once you make this dish once, you will want to make it again, and again, and again. Blame it on the fresh herbs. Blame it on your heavy-handed use of cheese. Lastly, blame it on the farro – nutty, wholesome, and utterly delicious 🙂
Farro and chayote squash salad
- 2 cups cooked farro
- 1 chayote squash
- 1 cup cherry tomatoes of various colors
- 1/4 small red cabbage
- 1/3 cup vegetable oil
- 1 tbsp + 1 1/4 tsp white wine vinegar
- 2 tbsp fresh parsley, stems removed
- 1 tsp fresh oregano, stems removed
- 1/2 cup grated parmesan of grana padano cheese (optional)
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
- Grate the chayote and red cabbage, chop the fresh parsley and oregano, and halve the cherry tomatoes.
- In a separate small bowl, make a simple vinaigrette with oil, vinegar, parsley, oregano, and salt and pepper to taste.
- Put the farro and all the prepared veggies in a large bowl, and pour the vinaigrette on top. Mix until well combined, and taste for salt and pepper. Let the salad chill in the fridge until serving time.