Not all great food has to be bad for you

Bacon is probably one of my favorite foods and so is pizza, ice cream and fried chicken.  However, I can agree that balancing the unhealthy is a good idea sometimes.  🙂  Today I am experimenting with farro, an Italian grain from wheat.  I had an excellent farro salad at Encuentro Cafe and Wine Bar in Jack London Square last week and I’ve had friends rave about the farro salad from Bellanico in the Glenview district which I have yet to visit.  I found a recipe from epicurious for farro salad with peas, asparagus, and feta that I am making.

I ran over to the Food Mill in the Laurel district yesterday.  The woman helping me in the bulk section told me that farro is really spelt berries and yes they carry it.  When I got home I googled spelt berries to see if it was the same as farro.  Although there was some disagreement with the Food Mill lady that it was the same, there was some agreement that they were similar.  Oh well, this is what I’m going to use.

I rinsed the spelt berries or farro a couple of times and then I cooked it in water and salt.  After it reached a boil, I left it simmering for about 25 minutes.  I mixed it a few times lightly.  The farro can easily break.  I cooked to taste (I wanted it al dente).  I drained the farro and then spread it onto a pan to cool off. 

Instead of boiling the sugar snap peas and the asparagus, I sauteed it together in some olive oil and salt for about five minutes on medium heat covered.  I also stirred it several times so it wouldn’t burn.  I halved some grape tomatoes and chopped up some red onion and set those aside.  I made some olive oil dressing using EVOO, balsamic viniagrette, salt, and pepper.  I mixed everything together.

Lastly, I plated the salad and added some feta cheese on top.  I’m adding the cheese as I eat it so that way I can refrigerate the rest for another meal without the cheese getting mushy.  Enjoy!