I accidentally took a week-long blog break, and I must say, it felt terrific. I usually try to post at least two recipes or blog posts a week, and if I know that I will have a busy week coming up I often schedule posts ahead. Between new house things going on, nine new chickens to take care of, taking my eldest grandson to college, and friends coming to stay with us, I just ran out of time, and therefore took a week-long break. When you have been working on a blog as long as I have (almost seventeen years now!), taking a break from it from time to time is necessary or you simply burn out. So, I am back, refreshed, and have a unique recipe to share with you.
This recipe sort of fell into place when my fifteen-year-old granddaughter sent me a recipe that she thought looked interesting and wanted to get my opinion. When Sarah sends me recipes, I know that she is hoping that we can prepare them together. What I liked about the recipe was that the base was farro, one of my favorite grains. What I didn’t like about the salad was that it included fried cauliflower and prosciutto. I changed the fried cauliflower to roasted and switched the prosciutto to salami. As I was putting this salad together and tasting it, I felt it needed a sweet ingredient to balance the nuttiness of the farro and roasted cauliflower, so I added golden raisins. Raisins and cauliflower are often paired in Sicilian dishes, so I thought, why not? I made a vibrant dressing including apple cider vinegar, Dijon mustard, and olive oil, added a handful of fresh parsley and lightly toasted walnuts. I do not care for raw onions apart from green onions, so I chose to use them, but you could use chopped red onion if you like.
I made this salad first for a family get-together, and everyone loved the unique combination of flavors. The next time I made this salad I did so to take photos and post about it but I never checked my pictures before the salad was consumed, and it turned out that I didn’t like the photos. So, this is my third version of this salad, and I must say that I think the more I try it, the more I like it.
Farro is an ancient grain that is also called emmer in some parts of the world. This high-fiber food is quickly becoming a gourmet specialty. Farro is an excellent source of protein, fiber, and nutrients like magnesium and iron, and has a nutty flavor that goes well with many ingredients. Farro should be cooked just until it is tender to the bite, but it should still be relatively firm. Nothing is worse than overcooked, mushy farro in a salad! To cook your farro, just bring a pot of salted water to a boil, and then drop in your farro and cook until tender, or “al dente.” I often used pearled farro in my salads, which cooks quicker than regular farro, taking just about 15 minutes to prepare. Just check your package directions as cooking time will depend on the variety of farro you choose.
Deborah Mele 2018
Roasted Cauliflower Farro Salad With Salami & Raisins
- 1 Medium Head Of Cauliflower
- 4 Tablespoons Olive Oil
- Salt & Pepper
- 1 Teaspoon Dried Oregano
- 5 Tablespoons Cider Vinegar
- 3/4 Cup Olive Oil
- 1 Tablespoon Dijon Mustard
- 1/2 Teaspoon Dried Oregano
- Salt & Pepper To Taste
- 4 Cups Cooked & Cooled Farro (See Notes Above)
- 3/4 Cup Diced Hard Salami
- 1/2 Cup Diced Celery
- 6 Green Onions, Chopped
- 1/2 Cup Golden Raisins
- 1/2 Cup Chopped Fresh Parsley
- 1/2 Cup Lightly Toasted, Chopped Walnuts
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
- Cut the core from the cauliflower, then cut it into bite sized florets.
- Place the cauliflower in a bowl, then add the oil, salt, pepper, and oregano.
- Spread the cauliflower across a large baking sheet and roast, turning every once in a while until the cauliflower is tender and lightly browned.
- Set aside to cool.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the dressing ingredients, then set aside until needed.
- In a large bowl, add the salad ingredients including the cooled cauliflower, and toss gently to mix.
- Whisk the dressing again and then pour it over the salad and toss to coat the ingredients.
- Taste and adjust seasonings as needed.
- Enjoy immediately or refrigerate until needed.