In winter, as we crave bold, hearty foods, fish and chicken can sometimes feel a bit slight. That’s when I like to serve a robust side dish to make the meal more satisfying.
Farro works wonderfully at such times. An ancient form of wheat native to Italy (see the photo of a Farro field), this wholesome grain has a chewy texture and pleasantly nutty flavor. Like all grains, when you doctor it up with some goodies, in this case onions, walnuts, and dates, you’ll get a dish that’s fascinating—but doesn’t steal the show.
My Farro Pilaf
1 medium onion, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
2 tablespoons butter, divided
1 cup farro
2 cups chicken broth
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1/2 cup chopped dates
1. In a medium saucepan, sauté the onion in 1 tablespoon of the hot butter. Add the
farro. Stir in the chicken broth. Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Cover and simmer until
the farro is tender yet still chewy, about 20 minutes. Remove from heat and keep
2. Toast walnuts in a skillet over medium heat until just beginning to brown, 3 to 5
minutes; add the remaining 1 tablespoon butter and the dates. Cook and stir until the dates are tender and the walnuts are toasted.
3. Drain the farro. Stir all but a couple of tablespoons of the walnut-date mixture into the drained farro. Transfer the farro to a serving bowl. Sprinkle remaining dates and walnuts on farro. Garnish with parsley, if desired.
News Flash: I’ll be giving away a beautiful braising pan on my website. To stay in the loop, follow me on Facebook.
Wini Moranville is the author of The Bonne Femme Cookbook: Simple, Splendid Food That French Women Cook Every Day, as well as the Braiser Cookbook, an e-book of recipes designed specifically for braising pans. Follow Wini on Facebook at Chez Bonne Femme.
Farro Field: Michael Cantania via Flickr
Farro Pilaf: Richard Swearinger
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New! Eye Prefer Paris Cooking Classes
I am happy to announce the launch of Eye Prefer Paris Cooking Classes. Come take an ethnic culinary journey with me and chef and caterer Charlotte Puckette, co-author of the bestseller The Ethnic Paris Cookbook (with Olivia Kiang-Snaije). First we will shop at a Paris green-market for the freshest ingredients and then return to Charlotte's professional kitchen near the Eiffel Tower to cook a three-course lunch. After, we will indulge in the delicious feast we prepared along with hand-selected wines.
Cost: 195 euros per person (about $240)
Time: 9:30AM- 2PM (approximately 4 1/2 hours)
Location: We will meet by a metro station close to the market
Class days: Tuesday,Wednesday, Thursday,Friday, Saturday, and Sunday
Minimum of 2 students, maximum 6 students.
Click here to sign up for the next class or for more info.
I am pleased as punch to announce the launch of Eye Prefer Paris Tours, which are 3-hour walking tours I will personally be leading. The Eye Prefer Paris Tour includes many of the places I have written about such as small museums & galleries, restaurants, cafes & food markets, secret addresses, fashion & home boutiques, parks, and much more.
Tours start at 225 euros for up to 3 people, and 75 euros for each additional person. I look forward to meeting you on my tours and it will be my pleasure and delight to show you my insiders Paris.
Check it out at www.eyepreferparistours.com
Click here to watch a video of our famous Marais tour