Farro Salad with Balsamic Roasted Cauliflower & Toasted Chickpeas
January 28, 2014

Farro Salad with Balsamic Roasted Cauliflower & Toasted Chickpeas | The Full Helping

I’ve been sick since Friday, which hasn’t lent itself to much cooking, and I’ve never felt more grateful for soup leftovers in my freezer! But the day before I fell under the weather, I made the lovely farro salad with balsamic roasted cauliflower and toasted chickpeas that you see above, and I enjoyed it immensely.

Farro is an underutilized grain in my kitchen, but it’s one of my favorites. Its got chew, texture, protein, and a not insignificant amount of iron (about 12% of your RDA per serving). If you don’t eat wheat or gluten, you can substitute brown rice or buckwheat in the recipe, too.

As with a lot of salad recipes I make, the trick to assembling this one in a pinch is to have cooked farro and toasted chickpeas on hand. I’ve shared a go-to recipe for toasted chickpeas before, but in case you need a refresher, here’s my basic method.

Farro Salad with Balsamic Roasted Cauliflower & Toasted Chickpeas | The Full Helping

Farro with Balsamic Roasted Purple Cauliflower, Arugula, and Toasted Chickpeas

Author - Gena Hamshaw
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes
Yields: 4 servings

Ingredients

  • 1 cup farro
  • 3 cups vegetable broth or water
  • 1 small head cauliflower cut into bite-sized pieces and florets (about 5-6 cups)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil plus more as needed
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar plus more as needed
  • 2 tablespoons fresh rosemary chopped (or 1 dried, crushed)
  • 1 1/2 cups toasted chickpeas (you can also use a commercial toasted chickpea brand or regular cooked chickpeas
  • 4 cups arugula
  • Olive oil for drizzling
  • Sea salt and black pepper

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 400F.
  • Place the farro and broth or water in a pot. Bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer. Simmer the farro with a lid on the pot, slightly ajar, till the water is absorbed and grain is cooked (about 25-30 minutes for pearled farro, and up to 45 for regular farro).
  • While the farro cooks, toss the cauliflower with the olive oil, vinegar, rosemary and sea salt and black pepper to taste. Roast it for 25 minutes, or until golden and just crispy.
  • Divide arugula onto four plates. Top each with a quarter of the cooked farro, cauliflower, and toasted chickpeas. Drizzle each plate with extra olive oil and/or balsamic as desired. Enjoy!

Farro Salad with Balsamic Roasted Cauliflower & Toasted Chickpeas | The Full Helping

Once your chickpeas are prepped, this recipe is a pinch!

You can vary the seasonings in this recipe as you like: add cumin, chili, coriander, or any other combination of spices to the chickpeas, or use different herbs when you roast the cauliflower. The dish is adaptable, but what matters most (and what gives it most character) is the huge variety of texture between chewy farro, crunchy chickpeas, crisp arugula, and soft cauliflower.

I hope you enjoy it. Apologies for not having more to say, but hot tea and more rest are calling. If you’d like a little extra reading, though, check out my contribution to Food52’s “without a recipe” series, in which contributors submit their favorite recipes that don’t necessitate a recipe. Mine was predictable: kale salad. An especially pretty one, though, full of black eyed peas, avocado and lemon zest. Enjoy!

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xo

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    19 Comments
  1. Feel better Gena! I’m going to try farro soon, for sure. I’ve been enjoying barley this week 🙂 I’m still trying to wrap my tastebuds around grains in salad. The roasted cauliflower looks delicious though!

  2. Farro is a great grain- lovely and chewy. I like adding it to soup 🙂
    Both this dish and your kale salad look really tasty. Hope you’re feeling better by now!

  3. Farro? I love the look for this dish,so beautiful. I’ve never used Farro before. It sounds like barley in terms of similar texture? I do hope you feel better soon. Get rest! My mom snarfs fresh ginger tea when she is feeling under the weather. She started adding condensed milk, which is typically not like her at all, but I’m sure it tastes good and can be a veganized tasty sick day treat. Sending love!!

    • Very similar to barley, Lia — chewy and hearty. One of my favorite grains.

      I’d never thought to add milk to ginger tea, but that’s a cool idea. Hmmm.

  4. Those toasted chickpeas sound delicious. I might nibble them away before they made it to the salad plate though. I found a beautiful bright yellow cauliflower last fall and now I’m on to bright purple, gorgeous and so healthy!
    Hope you have knocked those chills Gena. This D. C. cold weather is just miserable this year. Stay warm and thanks for this great salad 😉

    • Thanks Angela! It turned out to be a bad case of flu, but I’m finally turning the corner.

      I *always* eat most of the chickpeas by the time I get to making the recipe.

  5. I love farro too, but I’ve never made it on my own before. Toasted chickpeas are something I used to make all the time, but it’s definitely been a while. This looks great!

    And I hope you feel better soon! I actually just got home from a stint in the hospital…it was pretty scary. My latest blog post talks about it. I’ll think healing thoughts for a speedy recovery! Being sick is never fun. Sending love your way! <3