We celebrated my birthday at Davanti Enoteca and we tried the most incredible Farro and Butternut Squash Salad with Goat Cheese, Walnuts, and Watercress (pictured below). I knew that I needed to recreate the recipe at home so that you could try it too! The farro has a slightly nutty flavor that compliments the tender squash. The goat cheese melts and becomes a bit of a sauce, while the maple syrup glazed walnuts lend a touch of sweetness. The greens give a crisp fresh taste.
This is the type of recipe that you can whip up on a Sunday and pack for lunch throughout the week. I did swap the watercress out for arugula since the grocery store didn’t have any watercress. (Weird, right?) Otherwise, I think my version of the recipe was spot on.
While farro’s nutritional properties are very similar to quinoa’s it’s thicker, heartier, and more filling. Quinoa is light and fluffy; farro is chewier, nuttier, and more substantial. Farro is like a cousin to brown rice. Earlier this year, I declared that farro is the new quinoa, and I hope that I am right because I think it is so much better.
Farro Salad with Butternut Squash, Goat Cheese, Walnuts, and Arugula
- 3 tablespoons Butter
- 1 cup Farro look for it near rice and pasta at the grocery store
- 2 1/2 cups Vegetable Broth
- 1 cup Cubed Butternut Squash
- 2 ounces Goat Cheese
- 1 tablespoon Maple Syrup
- 1/4 cup Chopped Walnuts
Start by getting the farro cooking; it takes about 40 minutes to cook. First melt 2 tablespoons of butter in a medium saucepan. Let the butter some to a bubble, and let it brown slightly. Then add the farro and stir to evenly coast it in the butter. Pour the vegetable broth over. Bring to a simmer, and let simmer steadily for 40 minutes, stirring frequently.
Then prepare the squash. Heat your oven to 350 degrees. Melt the remaining butter in a microwave. In a bowl, pour the butter over the cubed squash, sprinkle with salt, and toss to evenly coat the squash in the butter. Then spread on a baking sheet and let bake for 20-25 minutes, until the squash is soft.
Glaze the walnuts in maple syrup by heating the maple syrup in a small skillet over medium heat, and add the walnuts and toast for 2 minutes.
Finish up by combing everything. Taste the farro and add extra salt if necessary. Then add the goat cheese and stir until it melts. Then add the squash and walnuts. Stir to combine. Serve topped with a bit of arugula.