Fava Bean & Farro Salad; (Mostly) Italian Protein Plate
We had a wonderfully intense weekend of celebrating Sweetpea's 7th birthday and her subsequent suddenly ability to swim (just like that). I felt tired in a happy way (which feels really good). I love the way that combination of sun and water both calms and depletes you. So I found myself craving protein and salads, which inspired this (Mostly) Italian Protein Plate.
I'm fortunate to have an excellent Italian deli, A.G. Ferrari very close to my home. Even more fortunate to have friendly, well-educated staff who, despite my vegetarianism, are happy to turn me on to new things. Both the Lentil & Spinach Salad:
and the incredible Cacio di Bosco Al Tartufo (I'm addicted!) are from A.G. Ferrari.
J. highly recommended farro to me and I recently purchased a 1lb bag of their Farro dell'Umbira, an organic Italian farro. Ferrari sell a farro and fava bean salad that is excellent, so I decided to give it a go myself. Farro is the "original grain from which all other grains derive", a high-protein, chewy grain that looks a lot like brown rice and is hard to overcook. It pairs nicely with other proteins (chickpeas, beans, cheeses) and very well with balsamic vinegar. My fava bean and farro salad was delicious! I also included green garlic, baby dinosaur kale, red wine, and balsamic vinegar (see recipe below).
With a side of black olive hummus and pita bread, this plate was very satisfying!
Fava Bean & Farro Salad:
2 oz farro, cooked per directions (I boiled the farro in salted water for 10 minutes)
3/4 cup fava beans, podded
1 tbsp olive oil
1 stalk green garlic, finely chopped
3/4 cup dinosaur kale leaves (I used tiny baby ones that I've never seen before, but you could tear regular dinosaur kale into 2" strips or use spinach or another green - adjust cooking time as needed)
1 tbsp red wine (optional)
1 tsp balsamic vinegar
Cook the fava beans in salted water for 2-3 minutes. Strain and rinse with cold water and peel.
Heat the olive oil in a skillet and sauted the green garlic for 4 minutes. Add the dinosaur kale (or other green) and cook until tender. Add the cooked farro and fava beans, cook 2 minutes. Add the wine (if using) and cook 2 minutes. Add the balsamic and season as desired. Serve hot or cold.