Posted by: Molly on: September 3, 2010
Very often, we eat what we’re given – what’s abundant and available. I know this to be very true in the States, but it’s also increasingly the case in England. This is odd, considering the proximity to Europe and all of the diverse foods found therein. So it came as a bit of a shock when I had to track down farro in London. Farro is to Italians what spelt is to us – same thing, different name. It’s an ancient grain which we find most often in flour, bread, or pasta form. I happen to LOVE spelt pasta and flour – it has the exact same consistency as regular wheat flour but is much easier on the digestive system and is far better for your health. Let’s take a look at some health benefits of spelt/farro (and other whole grains):*
While on vacation in Tuscany, we came across farro salads everywhere – similar to the quinoa salads we love to make at home. Once I tracked down a bag of farro back home in London, I thought it would make a nice substitute for rice in a risotto-type dish. And after a bit of googling, it seemed I wasn’t the only one with that idea! Farro risotto is everywhere – but the word “risotto” is a bit misleading. It is nothing like the consistency, texture, or flavor of a typical risotto, and it certainly isn’t made in the same way. But that doesn’t mean it isn’t a wonderful dish for dinner. With autumn fast approaching, give it a try (if you can find some farro for yourself!) – but if you can’t find the whole grain, pick up a bag of spelt pasta or spelt flour and try it instead of the regular stuff next time you’re having an Italian dinner or baking something delicious. You might love it!
Here’s my first attempt at farro risotto – it’s a definite keeper. The nuttiness of the farro combined with the slight sweetness of the squash and the punch of herby goodness? It all works together really well. Even Phil loved it and he’s a risotto fanatic.
Serves two; recipe adapted from good housekeeping
* I am not a medical professional, but I am studying to become a nutrition consultant. If you have any questions or would like any more information, please feel free to email me or leave a comment. Any nutrition advice I offer on the blog is supplemental to any medication you may be taking for a pre-existing condition.