My husband wants meat for dinner, and I don’t. When 5 o’clock rolls around it’s alway the same rigamarole- “what’s for dinner?” my husband asks. And when I tell him what I’m thinking and if it happens to sound too healthy or too vegetarian, he immediately establishes a prejudice against it. So I’ve developed a new tactic. I just don’t tell him. I wait until he’s good and hungry and then I place the beautiful bowl of food in front of him and wait to see what happens. I don’t even tell him what it is. And usually what happens is, he eats it. Of course, there have been a couple times when he’s flat out refused like when I served him a bowl of wilted nettles. Lesson learned.
This is one dish he wholeheartedly gobbled up – so I know it’s good. Toasted Farro with pear, hazelnuts and arugula – which can be served warm as a vegetarian main dish or chilled as a hearty side salad. Toasting the farro beforehand adds unexpected depth and nuttiness to the finished dish – and this technique is one to keep in your back pocket and remember, because it works with any grain, even pasta, elevating the finished dish. Using perfectly ripe fall pears really makes this dish shine. Pears, unlike most fruit, don’t actually ripen well on the tree. They are picked unripe and prefer to ripen on your kitchen counter. If left on the tree to ripen, their cores will become mealy and their outer flesh overly tannic. So be sure to give them a few days on the counter until they feel tender to the touch, near the stem.
September is my favorite month of the year. Here in the Northwest, days are gloriously sunny, while nights are deliciously brisk. The air feels charged with a special sort of energy, an effervescent quality that moves the trees in such a way, they seem to come alive. So mesmerizing.
In our catering world, there is a natural, but intentional slow down for us – Brian goes on his 10-day trip into the woods- and I get my fill of luxurious solitude. During our time apart, we forget about all the things that drive us crazy, and by the end of it we miss each other desperately. Our reuniting lands just a few days before our anniversary on the Fall Equinox. It really couldn’t be more perfectly timed. So this is why I love September. Not to mention the all the beautiful summer and fall produce that is available – there is such an abundance.
Happy weekend Friends! xoPrint
Toasted Farro with Pear, Hazelnuts, Romano & Arugula
A simple recipe highlighting fall pears with toasted farro, hazelnuts, shaved romano cheese and arugula
- Prep Time: 10 mins
- Cook Time: 40 mins
- Total Time: 50 mins
- Yield: 4-6
- Category: Vegetarian Main | hearty Salad
- Cuisine: Northwest
- Toasted Farro with Pear, Hazelnuts, Romano and Arugula 4-6
- 2 cups dry farro
- ¼ cup olive oil
- ⅛ cup apple cider vinegar
- ⅛ cup orange juice
- 1 tablespoon maple syrup
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon cracked pepper
- ½ cup crushed roasted hazelnuts
- 3 large ripe pears- sliced
- handful or two baby arugula ( or sub lacinato kale)
- 1 ½ ounces shaved or grated Romano Cheese ( optional, but delicious)
- Notes- if leaving cheese out, you may ned to adjust the salt ( the cheese adds salt).
- Toast farro in a large pot over medium high heat until lightly toasted and golden brown, about 5 minutes. Pour 8 cups water over top of the toasted farro and add a generous pinch of salt.
- Bring to a boil and boil uncovered, for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Once done to your liking, drain and place in a bowl.
- Add the rest of the ingredients, gently tossing as you go. Serve warm for a delicious vegetarian main, or chill and serve as a side salad.
- Notes- If leaving cheese out, adjust the salt ( the cheese adds salt to the dish).