Q: What is farro?
A: Farro is a type of wheat that is just beginning to gain popularity among American health food enthusiasts. Farro is known to be one of the oldest cultivated grains, and it is even documented to be the first and original grain domesticated by humans in the Middle East. Its incredible nutrient profile and great nutty flavor have made farro a staple grain in many European countries. It is grown and regularly consumed in Albania, Morocco, Spain, Italy and Switzerland to name a few. In Italy, farro is found in many restaurant dishes. In Switzerland, farro is commonly used to make bread.
Q: How does farro stack up to other grains?
A: Farro has an excellent nutritional profile with 170 calories, 35 grams of carbohydrates, only 1 gram of fat, 5 grams of fiber and a whopping 7 grams of protein per ¼ cup.
Check out this comparison of farro versus other popular whole grain choices:
While it’s nutritionally similar to whole grain oats, what really sets farro apart from its competition is its ability to adopt the flavor of other foods.
Q: How can I incorporate farro into my diet?
A: Farro is easy to prepare and even easier to work into your diet. Pearled farro comes ready to boil and only takes 10-15 minutes to prepare. Traditional farro must be soaked overnight before it’s boiled. Because it’s soft and chewy and absorbs flavors so well, farro can be mixed into salads, soups or sprinkled on top of just about any dish. My personal favorite is to simply mix farro with minced garlic and chopped onion. Want to give farro a try? This easy and excellent-tasting dinner dish is perfect for farro newbies:
Mediterranean Farro Salad
1 1/2 cups cooked farro
1 lb fresh tomato, seeded and chopped
2 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/2 onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
2 tsp sea salt
fresh ground black pepper
4 cups water
- Rinse the farro . Add 1 cup of grains with at least 3 cups of water to a medium pot on medium-high heat.
- Bring to a low boil for 15 minutes or until “al dente” or chewy.
- Place cooked farro in a separate bowl and let cool.
- In a medium bowl, mix olive oil, garlic, vinegar, sea salt and pepper to make dressing.
- Add tomatoes, onions and dressing to the farro and toss to coat.
- Eat and enjoy!