"You Can't Beet It" - Roasted Beet Salad With Farro
This recipe is from my recently published cookbook, Salad Joy - 30 Entrée Salads to Enjoy Year Round (www.saladjoy.com). I prefer this colorful salad vegetarian but it is also delicious with chicken or beef. Another great ladies' luncheon, and also completely do-ahead. Serves 4-6 hearty entree portions.
6 fresh Red Beets, roasted and cubed
1 T Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 t. fresh Thyme, chopped
2 cups cooked Farro, cook according to package - 1 cup raw is about two cups cooked
8 oz. Feta, cubed
2 bunches Italian Parsley, roughly chopped
1/2 cup Walnut halves, toasted
8-10 Yellow Pear Cherry Tomatoes, halved
2 t. Walnut Oil
1/2 lb. White Meat Chicken, cubed (optional)
1/4 cup Walnut Oil
1/4 Fig Balsamic Vinegar
1 T Snipped Chives
Remove greens from beets and scrub them clean. Quarter them and place on a foil-lined sheet pan. Drizzle with olive oil, sprinkle with chopped thyme, slat and pepper and roast at 425 degrees for one hour or until completely tender. Cool and roughly chop. Set aside.
Cook faro according to package directions. If not making it strictly vegetarian, use chicken stock instead of water. Set aside to cool.
In a dry skillet, toast the walnut halves until light brown, about three minutes. When cool, roughly chop.
Whisk the oil, vinegar and chives together in a small bowl. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Heat two teaspoons of walnut oil in a non-stick pan. Salt and pepper the chicken cubes. Brown the chicken until completely cooked through. Set aside to cool.
In a large bowl mix the parsley, faro, walnuts, tomatoes, and chicken, if using. Pour the dressing in and gently toss and plate. After plating, add the beets and feta on top - otherwise the entire salad is purple!
When I make the Grilled Skirt Steak Salad from Salad Joy, I often grill extra meat and freeze it. It's a delicious, rich addition to this salad, especially if you are serving it to people who aren't so crazy about beets. Actually, my husband doesn't like beets, so I leave them out entirely of his portion. Farro is delicious and even tastier when cooked in homemade chicken broth instead of water. Be careful preparing beets - they will stain everything.