Toasted Farro and Scallion “Risotto”
Farro, a distant cousin of wheat, is one of the world’s oldest cultivated grains. Compared with wheat, this hearty grain boasts twice the fiber and more protein, along with magnesium and a carbohydrate called cyanogenic glucosides, which has been found to stimulate the immune system.
• 5 tablespoons unsalted butter
• 4 scallions, thinly sliced
• 8 ounces farro
• 4 cups (32 ounces) of vegetable stock
• 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
• 3 cups cauliflower florets
• 1 tablespoon sherry vinegar
• Salt and pepper to taste
• 4 large eggs (optional)
• Melt butter in a large saucepan, add scallions and cook until softened, about 2 minutes.
• Add farro, season with salt and pepper, and cook for 1 minute, stirring constantly. Add ½ cup of stock and cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until absorbed. Keep adding stock, ½ cup at a time, stirring until absorbed before adding more. Cook farro until “al dente”, approximately 30 minutes. Set aside and keep warm.
• In a medium skillet, heat the olive oil. Add cauliflower, season with salt and pepper and cook over high heat until tender, about 5 minutes. Add the cauliflower, along with vinegar and remaining 2 tablespoons of butter, to the farro. Season with salt if desired and keep warm.
• For extra richness, boil water in a small saucepan and cook the eggs for 4 minutes. Drain and rinse. Peel the eggs, discarding the egg whites and keeping the yolks whole.
• To serve: Spoon farro risotto into four bowls, adding a few slices of fresh scallion to each and placing a yolk in the center of each bowl. Stir in the yolks while risotto is still warm.
Yield: 4 servings