Happy new year! Let’s get this new year started off nice and healthy! This salad definitely fits the bill! I’m sure many of you are sitting there wondering what “farro” actually is. It’s nothing crazy, it’s just a healthy grain . . . like quinoa. It’s super delicious and I absolutely love the texture. It is a wonderful source of protein and fiber.
I was first officially introduced to this lovely grain by one of my sisters-in-law. She is a huge fan (eats it for breakfast often) and because we both love healthy eats, she gave me a big bag for my birthday. I’ve loved it ever since! (Thanks Becca!)
Come the first of the year, I like to throw in a few meatless meals to our weekly menu. It just helps to detox and it provides for some lighter meals (you know . . . after all that heavy and excess holiday food!). That being said, I’m picky about my meatless meals because I’m adamant about getting enough protein into our bellies. That’s why I love farro because it offers a decent amount of protein without adding extra meat to the dish (although, adding chicken to this dish would be delicious too).
These veggies are wonderful when paired up with the farro. AND . . . I love the Italian twist because it really helps me to feel like I’m eating a real meal. The Italian Seasoning and the garlic are awesome here and I love the addition of fresh basil. Fresh herbs make just about anything taste gourmet. Oh, and the Parmesan cheese . . . don’t even get me started! It melted all over the farro as soon as I stirred it into the hot mixture. Delicious! Have I also failed to mention that it’s only 139 calories per serving? Hmmmm . . . . looks like I’m having TWO serving for lunch tomorrow.
Seriously. This makes for a great meatless meal or a beautiful side dish. Give it a go. You’ll love it.
Italian Farro Salad
Adapted from The Lilypad Cottage
1 1/2 cups rinsed farro
3 cups fat free chicken broth
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 cup of cherry or grape tomatoes, halved
1 (8-ounce) package of sliced mushrooms, chopped
1 zucchini, chopped
3 cloves of garlic, minced
2 teaspoons dried italian seasoning
3 tablespoons fresh basil, chopped
3/4 cup of shredded Parmesan cheese
salt and pepper to taste
Bring farro and chicken broth to a boil. Reduce to medium heat, cover and let simmer for 20 – 25 minutes or until tender. Drain.
Meanwhile sauté garlic, italian seasoning, tomatoes, mushrooms, and zucchini until tender about 15 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Combine cooked farro and vegetables in a bowl.
Add fresh basil, parmesan, and more salt and pepper.
Can be served hot or room temperature.
Nutritional Information (Per Serving = 1 Cup)
Fat: 5.7g (2.1g = Sat.)