RECIPE: Farro Salad

October 14, 2015, 12:39 PM HST
* Updated September 8, 11:49 AM
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This lovely salad marries the ancient grain farro with the spicy bite of arugula greens and radishes, and the fragrant herbs basil and mint. It is then tossed with grape tomatoes, hulled pistachios, freshly squeezed lemon juice and olive oil and finished with shaved parmesan.

Farro is one of the oldest grains cultivated by humans and is a great source of both fiber and protein. In recent times, farro has gained popularity for its delicious nutty flavor and versatility as an ingredient in everything from salads, soups and pilaf. When cooked, farro closely resembles the small seed pasta orzo in both shape and texture and is best eaten al dente.


1 cup pearled farro

1 cup apple cider or juice


2 cups water


2 teaspoons of salt

2 bay leaves

8 T olive oil


2 T fresh lemon juice

1/2 cup shaved parmesan cheese

1/2 chopped pistachio nuts

2 cups torn arugula leaves

1 cup torn basil leaves

1 cup fresh mint leaves, chopped

1 cup grape or cherry tomatoes, halved

1/2 cup radishes, thinly sliced

sea salt


  1. In a medium saucepan, bring farro, apple cider, salt, bay leaves and 2 cups water to a boil.
  2. Reduce to low and let mixture simmer until farro is tender and liquid evaporates, about 30 minutes.
  3. Add water if all the liquid evaporates before the farro is done and continue to cook.  When done, let farro cool and discard bay leaves.
  4. In a salad bowl, whisk together olive oil, lemon juice and sea salt to taste.
  5. Add farro, shaved parmesan and pistachio nuts and mix well.
  6. Gently toss mixture with arugula, herbs, tomatoes and radish slices.
  7. Serve at room temperature.

Optional substitutions: Use parsley instead of basil and almonds or macadamia nuts instead of pistachio.

This post has been a contribution by Kristin Frost Albrecht on behalf of The Food Basket, Hawai’i Island’s Food Bank.


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