Farro, or emmer wheat, is a type of ancient grain. It can be eaten as a whole grain, much like barley, quinoa, freekeh, and other wheat berries. With its chewy texture, it is a lovely complex carb substitute for pasta. Find farro in the bulk foods section or on the shelf next to other packaged whole grains at your local natural grocer or health food store.
Use organic ingredients when possible
1 medium butternut squash, peeled and chopped into 1-inch pieces
1 large red onion, chopped into 1-inch pieces
2 tbsp avocado oil
½ tsp sea salt, or to taste
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1 cup farro
3 cups vegetable stock or water
ARUGULA WALNUT PESTO
2 tbsp chopped raw walnuts
2 cloves garlic
2 cups loosely packed fresh baby arugula
¼ tsp freshly grated nutmeg
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
Sea salt and black pepper, to taste
Optional garnishes: raw pumpkin seeds, shelled hemp seeds, fresh baby arugula
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
Line a large baking pan with parchment paper and spread the butternut squash and red onion across. Drizzle the vegetables with avocado oil and sprinkle with sea salt and pepper. Toss to coat. Roast for 20-25 minutes or until tender, tossing the vegetables after 10-15 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool for 5-10 minutes.
While the vegetables are roasting, rinse the farro thoroughly and pour it into a medium saucepan. Add in the vegetable stock or water and put it on high heat. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 30-35 minutes or until tender. Drain off any excess water.
Make the arugula walnut pesto while the farro and vegetables are cooking. Lightly toast the pieces in a small pan. Remove from the heat and cool. Using a food processor, grind up the walnuts and garlic until fine. Add in the arugula and nutmeg. Pulse for a few seconds. Then, with the food processor going, slowly pour in the olive oil. Season with sea salt and pepper to taste.
In a large serving dish, combine the roasted vegetables with the farro and pour in the pesto. Gently toss everything to coat. Garnish with pumpkin seeds, hemp seeds, and/or fresh baby arugula, if desired.
Refrigerated leftovers will keep for up to 5 days.