Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Ancient Grain

As we are somewhat historic this week I thought it was appropriate to talk about one of the oldest grain we are known to eat these days. Farro has exploded onto our screens over the past months and today you can find it at restaurants one delicious dishes and supermarkets so you can play with.

I discovered farro at Whole Foods {where else!} in the shape of risotto with butternut squash and since then I have been experimenting with it. But before me ancient peoples were using it around in the Near East about 17,000 years ago {WOW!} and some of them know it as emmer {we call is semi-pearled farro}.

It most grown in mountainous part of Europe and Asia but its a staple of Italian food as it was the garin of choice to feed the Roman Legions. Farro is a type of spelt but when cooked is firmer and more chewy instead of mushy... Make sure that you read the package and it calls for Triticum Dicoccum {it's actual name}.

Farro is not gluten free but has lower contents of it, so if you are allergic better stay away from it. On the other hand is high in fiber, protein and nutrients. It has a slight nutty flavor and it's very versatile as you can use it on a wide variety of dishes like soups, salads and as a rice substitute.

If you feel adventurous, give this hearty grain a try and you won't be disappointed. It is easy to cook as it usually takes about 20 minutes and you can use a similar ratio as rice {2part of water to 1 part of grain}. I've never tried using it on sweet dishes but that pudding at the top looks lovely.

Have a delicious day!