A quick and easy citrus farro salad with arugula, walnuts and dried cranberries.
True story: I tested this on a whim one morning earlier this month when I had 20 minutes to spare. (Or so I thought… I once again picked my kids up from preschool after lunch with wet hair and no make-up and probably mismatched socks. Ah well…)
I had a few bites when I made it (mid-morning, mind you) and then ate some more of it for lunch. And I kept saying, “This was definitely better warm/room temperature.” Frantically shoveling forkfuls into my mouth. “Still good, but definitely prefer it warm, or at least not cold.” How fast can I get this in my mouth straight from the fridge? I couldn’t stop myself.
Lesson? Not clear. I loved it as soon as it was made. It was great as it sat out on the counter for a bit and I kept nibbling. And I thought it was tasty straight from the fridge, too.
So here’s my plan for you: Make it for dinner and serve it that night when it’s warm.
And then if you’re lucky enough to have leftovers — i.e., you didn’t tell anyone else this was stashed in the fridge so you could have it all of it for yourself — try it cold for leftovers. You may want to add some extra olive oil or lemon juice to brighten it up a bit. Also, you can always warm it up in the microwave if you like it better warm. I apparently can’t resist this farro salad at any temperature.
One final note: Do not, and I repeat, do not, walk away from the walnuts as you toast them in the pan. Every time I think I’ll just do this one quick thing, it’ll only take 10 seconds, and then 5 minutes later I remember I’m toasting nuts and yup, they’ve started to burn. Not good eats.
And walnuts are expensive so I hate wasting them! My tip for you: buy in bulk! I buy mine at a warehouse store or at Trader Joe’s or a grocery store that has a bulk bin. After I open them, I store them in the freezer. They last a lot longer and you can use them straight from the freezer; they don’t require defrosting.
So go make this citrus farro salad and please tell me what temperature you like it best - hot right away, warm as it cools slightly, room temperature, cold from the fridge? I can’t decide. I need your help please!
P.S. If you read my last post and were wondering, Aruba was amazing! We had a great time celebrating my husband’s birthday. Beautiful weather, beautiful water, lots of delicious seafood, lazy mornings, plenty of beach time, a bit of snorkeling. Ah, paradise. But I’m also super happy to be home and back with my little ones. Just in time to make a holiday dinner and celebrate some more! All my best to you and your loved ones this holiday!
- 1 (8-9 oz.) package of quick-cooking farro
- ¾ teaspoon kosher salt, divided
- ½ teaspoon black pepper, divided
- Zest and juice of 1 lemon
- 1 tablespoon of extra-virgin olive oil, plus extra for serving
- ¼ cup orange juice
- ½ cup walnuts
- ⅓ cup dried cranberries
- 2 cups loosely packed baby arugula
- ⅓ cup grated Parmesan cheese, plus extra for serving
- Cook farro according to package directions. Once cooked - it should be a little chewy and al dente - remove from heat and season with ½ teaspoon kosher salt and ¼ teaspoon black pepper.
- Meanwhile, lightly toast the walnuts in a small skillet for a few minutes, stirring or tossing occasionally. Don’t let them burn! Remove and coarsely chop.
- Place the arugula in a large bowl. Season with remaining salt and pepper, lemon zest and juice and olive oil.
- Add the cooked farro to the bowl with the arugula and add orange juice, walnuts, dried cranberries and Parmesan cheese. Mix well. Season to taste with extra salt, pepper, Parmesan cheese and a drizzle of olive oil, if needed.
- Serve warm or at room temperature. (I think the leftovers are also good cold!)
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 287Total Fat: 15gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 11gCholesterol: 7mgSodium: 551mgCarbohydrates: 35gFiber: 5gSugar: 14gProtein: 8g