Fantastically Fall Cranberry-Pecan Farro
The New England landscape is a beauty to behold this time of the year. The leaves are turning brown, gold, and orange, and thoughts of grinning jack-o-lanterns, buckets of colorful wrapped candies. Thanksgiving dinners roasting away in an oven begin to come to mind more frequently. The foods of fall deserve as much fanfare as the gorgeous landscape.
Don’t resign yourself to memories of Thanksgiving dinners of past — be prepared to make this side dish and completely fall in love with it. Last October I discovered the Cranberry-Pecan Couscous at Whole Foods’ prepared food section.
This is my homemade version of said dish, which is a total snap to make. To sweeten the deal, not having to drop $7 on two meager plastic boxes of the stuff from Whole Foods, aka “Whole Paycheck,”, is pretty freaking awesome in itself.
This recipe was inspired by the Epicurious recipe you can find here.
1 cup uncooked farro*
1 naval orange, juiced
½ teaspoon dried thyme
½ teaspoon ground turmeric
2 tablespoons champagne vinegar
1 tablespoon honey
3 tablespoons of grapeseed oil (or another neutral oil)
¼ cup pecans, toasted and roughly chopped
¼ cup organic dried cranberries
Let’s get cooking!
- Preheat oven to 325. Spread out pecan halves (or pieces) onto a foil-lined baking sheet. Toast the pecans for about 8 minutes.
- Let pecans cool for five minutes on baking sheet before roughly chopping them with a big chef’s knife, or just break them up into bits with your fingers! You’re going to want them to have some bite!
- Cook your grains according to instructions on the package. I buy Trader Joe’s quick-cook farro.
- Pour cooked grains into a big bowl– you’ll be mixing everything into them.
- In a separate glass measuring cup, using a fork stir together freshly juiced orange, thyme, turmeric, champagne vinegar, honey, and grapeseed oil for the dressing.
- Toss the pieces of toasted pecan, and the dried cranberries into the bowl of farro, and stir the three ingredients together so it gets all mixed up nice.
- Splash a few tablespoons of dressing (it makes A LOT) into the bowl, and stir it again with the fork.
- Spoon the nommy fall goodness into a plastic (or glass) container, snap the lid on and give it a few good shakes!
This is a such a versatile little side dish. It could be eaten hot, or cold, and packed away for an on-the-go lunch. Serve this up with some roasted or mashed sweet potatoes, orange-honey baked tofu, and some steamed greens like broccoli or string beans to savor the flavors of fall!
Or if you’re feeling especially fall-fancy, it can be served in a lightly baked butternut squash or pumpkin half.
*You could also feel free to use Barley, Quinoa, or Couscous for your grain. I just don’t like the chewy and slimy texture of the couscous pearls.