For the past few weeks, I’ve been making a salad almost every day. Maybe it’s all in preparation for coming of spring, but I’ve got a serious hunger for greens. Usually, it’s just been a simple green salad with a garlicy vinaigrette or this french-style carrot salad that I’m a bit nutso for, but sometimes it’s a big dinner salad. Like this one.
This is one of those cleaning out the fridge salads where many components come together to make a united front. Since this was going to be dinner, I wanted it to be hearty. Farro is added for bulk and fiber and it’s pleasantly chewy texture really works here. There’s plenty of crunch found in the vegetables: romaine, celery, red pepper, red onion, broccoli, green beans – some raw, others very lightly steamed. I always lightly steam broccoli for salads, that is, unless I’m making this all-time favorite or this one. And of course, more crunch found can be found in the toasted pecans and there’s lovely sweetness from the dried cranberries.
The whole shebang is tossed in a vinaigrette but if I had buttermilk, I would have added that to the dressing for some creaminess and tang. I’m sure other vegetables could be added or taken away, based on availability or personal preference.
elsewhere: I have to share my fantastic new baking soda cleaning discovery and I write all about it over at ReadyMade. Baking soda plus vinegar & dish soap to clean my dirty, dirty oven. For reals. Find out all about it. Also, at Poppytalk this past week, I made some pretty kick ass grain-veggie burgers. Get the recipe.
farro & greens cranberry crunch salad
1/2 c farro
1 small head broccoli, broken into small florets
2 handfuls of green beans, ends discarded & cut into 1″ pieces
1/4 red onion, finely diced
2 green onions, sliced thinly
1 large stalk celery, sliced thinly
1/4 red pepper, small dice
4 large Romaine lettuce leaves
1 large handful of dried cranberries
1 large handful of toasted pecans
1/4 c roasted walnut oil
1/4 c cider vinegar
1 T balsamic vinegar
1 T agave syrup (or honey)
1 T dijon mustard
salt & pepper
Add farro to a pot of boiling, salted water, simmer and cover for 20-30 minutes or until tender. Rinse under cold water and drain. Set aside.
Blanche the green beans and the broccoli, steaming in salted boiling water for just a minute or two until bright green. Rinse under cold water and drain. Set aside.
In a large serving bowl, tear Romaine lettuce into bite sized pieces. Add the farro, broccoli, green beans, red peppers, celery, red onion, green onion, cranberries and toasted pecans.
Mix together the remaining ingredients in a small jar and shake until combined. Taste & adjust seasonings if necessary. Pour over salad and toss well. Serve.