I’ve been to many restaurants in the city and it’s rare to remember one singular dish at a restaurant; a dish so memorable you think about it all the time. That dish for me is the farro salad at Charlie Bird (read here). I went to Charlie Bird for my birthday last year and my girlfriend took the reigns on ordering for us. Before this meal, I had no idea what farro was let alone order it for myself. I’ve come to learn that farro is a grain that’s predominantly in Italian cuisine. The recipe that I found on the New York Times had cherry tomatoes in the salad which is different than the one I had at the restaurant which had butternut squash. Apparently, cooking farro is difficult for some but I had no issues. I did soak the farro for an hour and cooked it with 3 times the water. Once you cook the farro, the rest is just assembly which makes this salad super easy to make.
You will need: 1 cup of cooked farro | 1 cup apple cider | 2 teaspoons kosher salt | 2 bay leaves | 8 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil | 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice | 1/2 cup parmesan cheese, shaved with a vegetable peeler | 1/2 cup pistachio nuts | 2 cups arugula leaves | 1 cup basil leaves | 1 cup mint leaves | 3/4 cup halved cherry tomatoes | 1/3 cup thinly sliced radish | maldon salt
In a medium saucepan, bring farro, apple cider, salt, bay leaves and 3 cups water to a simmer. Simmer until farro is tender and liquid evaporates, about 30 minutes. The recipe actually called for 2 cups of water but I added an extra cup and I found it was just enough water to cook the farro. In a salad bowl, whisk together olive oil, lemon juice and a pinch of salt. Add farro, cheese and pistachio nuts and mix well.
Add arugula, herbs, tomatoes, and radish.
Mix ingredients together and add maldon salt.
This farro salad is perfect for lunch or dinner.