This cilantro lime slaw is fresh and zingy, with just the right pop from the citrus! It’s great as a side dish or taco filling.
There’s something about a creamy slaw that’s irresistible, and we couldn’t stop shoveling in bites of this one. Try this Cilantro Lime Slaw! Cabbage in a creamy dressing is one thing. But add the bite of fresh cilantro and a pop of lime, and it’s next level! The flavor is creamy, savory and ideal as a side dish for chicken, fish or veggie mains. Or, throw it into a tortilla as a taco filling, and eat the rest on the side. Here’s how to make this irresistible recipe (we’re already getting hungry).
Ingredients in cilantro lime slaw
There’s a bit of a shortcut in this cilantro lime slaw: a bag of coleslaw mix! Here’s the thing: when it comes to coleslaw, slicing cabbage always makes a bit of a mess. A bag of coleslaw is nearly as fresh, and saves a load of time! For this recipe, we added in some additional red cabbage because we wanted a colorful look, and most coleslaw bags don’t have much red cabbage. You can omit the red cabbage if you prefer: it will still taste great! Here’s what you’ll need:
Salt and pepper
A winning combo: mayo plus Greek yogurt
When it comes to creamy dressings and dips, we’ve discovered a secret: Greek yogurt plus mayonnaise. Traditionally mayo-based foods can be rather rich, so here’s a trick: cut the mayo with a little Greek yogurt! It lightens up the calories and flavor, keeping it creamy and adding a little tang. We use this trick often, like with our Creamy Caesar Dressing or Spinach Artichoke Dip.
This cilantro lime slaw also features mayonnaise and Greek yogurt in the coleslaw dressing! If you prefer dairy-free recipes, simply use an equal part mayonnaise for the yogurt. It tastes great and has an even richer flavor.
Cabbage vs coleslaw mix
Want to use cabbage instead of coleslaw mix in this cilantro lime slaw? You can do that too! Here’s what’s in a 14 to 16 ounce bag of coleslaw mix:
Use 6 to 7 cups shredded green cabbage
Add 1 cup shredded carrots
Serving cilantro lime slaw
This cilantro lime slaw is the ideal side dish for any protein or main: and it’s great for picnics and barbecues. Or, throw it in tacos! Here are a few ideas:
My dear ones! It’s been another while since being in the blog space and I’m happy to be here with you, in the glory of summer unfolding. I love having the time to craft these posts, since they are a true outpouring from my heart […]
My dear ones! It’s been another while since being in the blog space and I’m happy to be here with you, in the glory of summer unfolding. I love having the time to craft these posts, since they are a true outpouring from my heart to yours, in the hopes that it will tether us to this time and place, land, season, and true nourishment. Strawberry Rhubarb Rose Crumble Bars is one of the special ones, that has been bubbling away in my consciousness since last summer.
I was cycling on the boardwalk at the beach near my home last August, and out of the corner of my eye, I saw a flash of fuchsia – the unmistakable pink of rose hips. Ahhh this gorgeous bushy plant is one that I first became familiar with in Denmark, where they bloom along the shores of every beach, punctuating the salty summer air with rose perfume. And here it was, at the water’s edge in Ontario, the very last petals dropping in the slanted summer sun. I knew I was too late to do anything with them at that point, so the idea-seed was planted for next year. Which is now, right on time!
They say what grows together goes together, so for this recipe I waited for the rose hip to bloom, and then checked out what the other plants were peaking in my garden; strawberries and rhubarb! What a divine and classic combination! I couldn’t wait to get to celebrating this triple-blessing of flavours.
Early Summer Stars
Peak-season strawberries are nutritional super stars. They’re loaded with vitamin C, and good amounts of manganese, folate, and fibre. Their total antioxidant capacity is extremely high, and as we learn more about this summer delight, there is evidence proving its positive effects on cardiovascular health. After consumption, there is less platelet aggregation, less lipid peroxidation and an increase in free-radical scavenging – meaning those antioxidants get to SNACK!
Rhubarb is also a high-fibre food, which is essential for digestion. Fibre is exclusively a plant nutrient, as plants grow it for structural support. Animals have bones, so fibre is not a significant part of their composition. Therefore, increasing our dietary intake of plants in comparison to animal-based foods means an increase in our fibre intake. Makes sense, right?
So much of our nourishment depends on the healthy passage of food through our digestive tract. Without the fibre in things like strawberries and rhubarb, it is impossible for our digestion to take place in a balanced way. With imbalanced digestion comes the risk of poor nutrient absorption, and along with that comes compromised metabolism, immunity, even our mental health. The risk of most chronic diseases is lowest when whole plant foods, like a simple serving of strawberries and rhubarb, are plentiful in the diet. These bars also contain high-fibre oats, almonds and almond flour, so basically what I am saying is eat a lot of these.
The Strawberry Rhubarb Rose Compote
I knew that I wanted the seasonal ingredient to really shine in this recipe, so I started by making a compote with the strawberries and rhubarb, adding a kiss of vanilla and rose. The results were like, mind-blowing, people. I’ve made this compote several times now, simply because it is delicious on everything and in so many ways. So far I’ve slathered it on the Revolutionary Pancakes with almond butter, hemp, salt, and even more fresh strawberries. I made popsicles with it (blended this with more strawberries and froze it). And warmed slightly over vanilla ice cream? Unreasonable. The fact that it comes together in under 15 minutes is also motivating for me – I know I’m not in for a huge project to make it, even though the end result *feels* like such a luxurious extra in my life. Make a triple batch now and freeze it I say!
If you want to get ahead, you can make the compote up to seven days in advance. And yes it lasts that long in the fridge. So convenient.
You can use store-bought, instead of homemade rosewater in this recipe to skip a step, but I understand that sourcing store-bought might be just as much of a challenge for some. Surprisingly, I can find bottled rosewater at my local, small-town grocery store, so check with an employee at your closest market since you might be surprised they stock it! Heath foods stores are a good bet too. And if you can find fresh rose / rose hip flowers, then harvest them sustainably and make your own rose water. Recipe and two methods here. As a last resort, order online!
The Crumble Bars
The top and bottom layer of these bars are a slight upgrade from my original crumble bar recipe with blackberries and hazelnuts, back in 2014 (!). This time I made more of a cookie base, kind of like a giant shortbread cookie with almond flour, which turned out to be more moist and easier to cut than the one just made with oats. I really love this change, and hope you will too! The crumble topping is exactly the same except for swapping out the brown rice flour for almond flour, since it’s yummier / fattier / moister. And since knowing that almonds are in the strawberry and rose family (Rosaceae!) it only made sense.
Enjoy this literal slice of summer, friends and lovers. These Strawberry Rhubarb Rose Crumble Bars are truly a moment, captured. And I hope you choose to savour it.
2cups/ 200g rolled oatsdivided (gluten-free if desired)
¾cup/ 70g almond flour
¾tsp.fine grain sea salt
60gexpeller-pressed coconut oilghee or butter
¼cup/ 60ml pure maple syrup
1cup/ 100g rolled oats
2Tbsp.pure maple syrup
2Tbsp.expeller-pressed coconut oilghee, or butter
⅔cup/ 100g almonds
¼tsp.fine sea salt
Start by making the compote. Bring water and maple syrup to a simmer in a medium saucepan. Roughly chop rhubarb and add it to the pan, stir and cover. Simmer for 5 minutes, stir again and use the back of a wooden spoon to smash the rhubarb. If it’s still quite tough, cover and continue to cook until almost soft. While the rhubarb is simmering, wash and stem the strawberries, then roughly chop. Add them to the soft rhubarb, stir well and cook covered, for 2-3 minutes. Remove from heat, and smash the mixture with the back of your spoon, until it’s your desired texture. I like mine pretty chunky. Stir in the salt, vanilla and rosewater. Adjust the flavours to suit your taste. The compote will firm up as it cools. Measure out 2 ½ cups / 625ml of compote and set aside.
Preheat oven to 350°F / 175°C. In a food processor blend 1 ½ cups / 150 grams of oats on high until you have a rough flour, like coarse sand. Add almond flour, salt, and baking powder, then pulse to combine. Add maple syrup, coconut oil, and vanilla. Pulse until evenly moist, then fold or pulse in the whole oats. The dough will be quite firm and sticky.
Turn the dough out into a lightly greased, or parchment-lined 8" x 8” / 20 cm x 20 cm glass or metal pan and press firmly, especially around the edges – it helps to wet your hands so that the dough doesn’t stick to your fingers. Place in the preheated oven and bake for 15 minutes.
While the base is baking, make the crumble topping. Without cleaning the food processor, add the all the ingredients for the crumble, and pulse a few times to mix. You can chop the ingredients as finely as you like, but I like mine pretty chunky.
Remove the base from the oven, and spread the compote over top in an even layer. Crumble the topping over, and place back in the oven for another 30-35 minutes, until the top and bottom are golden brown, and the middle is a bit bubbly.
Let cool completely before cutting into bars. Say thank you and enjoy. Store in an airtight container in the fridge for five or six days. Freeze for up to 3 months and let warm for a few minutes before enjoying!
This Caprese sandwich is a stunning crowd pleaser! Layer tomatoes, mozzarella and pesto aioli for a splash of flavor.
What’s better than the classic combination of tomatoes, mozzarella, and basil? Not much, in our opinion. So try this summery delight: the Caprese sandwich! This riff on the classic Italian salad from Capri layers the classic ingredients as a sandwich filling, with an irresistibly creamy, pesto aioli that adds a pop of savory brightness to each bite. It’s the perfect idea for an easy no-cook summer dinner, picnics, and more. When our son Larson tried a bite, he said, “Can we eat this every day?” We felt the same!
Ingredients in a Caprese sandwich
A Caprese sandwich is a sandwich that uses the ingredients in the classic Italian Caprese salad: tomatoes, mozzarella, and basil. There are many variations on this concept, sometimes using arugula, balsamic vinegar, or other spreads to embellish the sandwich. The traditional Italian version of Caprese salad doesn’t use balsamic vinegar or reduction and we don’t think the flavor pairs correctly, so you won’t need that here. For this recipe, we’ve used our fan-favorite pesto aioli as a creamy spread that adds a pop of savory flavor to each bite.
Here’s what you’ll need for this Caprese sandwich:
Ciabatta bread or other artisan bread: This Italian bread is soft and perfect for sandwiches! Steer clear of a French baguette, which can be tough to bite through. Any other type of artisan bread works!
Ripe tomatoes: This is a must! This sandwich only works with the ripest, juiciest tomatoes, much like a good BLT.
Fresh mozzarella cheese: Purchase it in an 8 ounce ball and slice off slices for the sandwich.
Fresh basil: All you need is a handful of leaves per sandwich.
Baby arugula: Arugula adds a bit of texture and flavor variation. Make sure to buy baby arugula in a box or bag, which has a feathery texture and milder flavor. Avoid mature arugula that’s sold in bunches: the flavor is too strong.
Pesto aioli: This is the kicker! The pesto aioli blends basil, mayonnaise, Parmesan cheese and lemon juice and absolutely makes the sandwich. Do not leave it out!
Tips for making the pesto aioli
The key to any good sandwich? A great sandwich spread. You absolutely cannot have a dry sandwich with unseasoned bread. Here, the pesto aioli adds just the right creaminess and seasoning to the entire sandwich. Here’s what to know about the pesto aioli:
Use a large or small food processor. A small blender would also work.
It works for several sandwiches. The quantity you’ll end up with is 10 tablespoons, so depending on how much you use it should work for 3 to 4 sandwiches.
You can make it in advance and store refrigerated. Keep in mind, the color does fade slightly over time.
Make ahead for a Caprese sandwich
This Caprese sandwich is perfect for a picnic: but does it hold up over time? Yes! Some sandwiches get soggy over time, but this one holds up well. However, you’ll want to keep the following in mind:
Spread each bread side with pesto aioli and have a layer of arugula and basil over each. This protects the bread from direct contact with the tomato or mozzarella, which can make it soggy.
If serving within 2 hours, refrigeration is not needed. The mayo in the sandwich spread should be refrigerated after 2 hours.
Otherwise, wrap and refrigerate or keep in a cooler until serving. The bread does become tougher when refrigerated, so allow the sandwich to come to room temperature before serving if possible.
You can also make a Caprese sandwich as a panini or hot sandwich, like the Panera Caprese sandwich. Simply use sliced sandwich bread to build the sandwich. Then toast it in a panini press for 3 to 4 minutes, or grill in a grill pan or skillet for 2 minutes per side.
More Caprese themed foods
Caprese has become a shorthand for anything that stars tomatoes, fresh mozzarella and basil. Of course, nothing beats the classic Caprese salad, made the Italian way with a drizzle of great olive oil and salt. Here are a few variations on the theme:
Make the pesto aioli: In a food processor, blend the garlic until roughly chopped. Add the basil, Parmesan cheese, lemon juice, salt and mayonnaise. Blend until a smooth, creamy sauce forms. (Store leftovers refrigerated for 2 weeks.)
Season the tomato slices with a pinch of salt. On each slice of bread, slather the pesto aioli. Build the sandwich by layering half the arugula and basil, the tomato slices, mozzarella slices, more arugula and basil, and then the aioli-slathered bread. Enjoy immediately, or wrap and refrigerate until serving.
Here’s how to make the best potato salad recipe! This American-style salad is creamy and classic: maybe even better than Grandma’s.
There are loads of ways to make a good potato salad: German or French, loaded with dill or tossed in a tangy vinaigrette. But the type that holds our hearts is the American classic: just like Grandma’s or the grocery store deli counter! Here’s our best potato salad made the American way: creamy, tangy and sweet, and loaded with crunchy onions and pickles. It’s that pale yellow color that betrays the combination of mustard and mayo, and is destined for stardom at your next cookout or picnic. Prepare yourself in advance for the question: Can you bring that potato salad again?
Ingredients for the best potato salad recipe
Here’s how to make potato salad: the American way! Gather up your bottles of mayo, mustard and pickle relish for this one. This retro-style festival of condiments really does make for the best pop of flavor. We’ve made some updates to the classic recipe, adding Greek yogurt to stand in for a little mayo and fresh dill for an herbaceous pop. Here’s what you’ll need for this recipe:
Yukon gold potatoes: the variety here is important! Also called gold potatoes, they have a lightly sweet flavor and keep their shape when boiled. Do not substitute red skinned or russet potatoes!
White wine vinegar
Sweet pickle relish (or dill pickles)
Greek yogurt or sour cream
Yellow mustard and Dijon mustard
How to make potato salad
The trickiest part of how to make potato salad? Boiling the potatoes! There are several variations on the best way to do so. Critics argue over whether to peel and chop before or after boiling. Here’s what we recommend:
Quarter the Yukon gold potatoes, then place in a pot of cold water. Leave the skins on: they’ll come off easily later.
Boil the potatoes 8 to 15 minutes, until fork tender. Drain and rinse them under cold water.
Pop off the skins with your fingers, then chop into smaller pieces. When they’re cool enough to touch, the skins come off easily after boiling. Another trick? Sprinkle them with vinegar and salt before mixing (read more below).
Mix the potatoes with the sauce and vegetables. Chop the veggies, mix the sauce, and add it all together. Go to the recipe below for quantities.
Chill 2 hours. This salad tastes great right away, but it’s best when it’s cold. If possible, refrigerate it for 2 hours before serving.
Tips and ingredient notes
The basic method is simple, but it does take a bit of time to prepare this potato salad. But don’t worry: it’s absolutely worth the effort in the end! Here are a few notes about the process:
Sprinkle the potatoes with vinegar and salt, and let stand for 5 minutes before dressing. This trick from Julia Child is also part of our French Potato Salad recipe. It infuses the potatoes with tangy flavor before dressing them, which amplifies the flavor of the dish.
Use sweet pickle relish for a classic flavor, or dill pickles for more savory notes. Sweet pickle relish adds just the right sweetness to the overall mixture. But chopped dill pickles work too: they intensify the savory notes.
Greek yogurt or sour cream pair perfectly with mayo. Many salads use only mayo in the dressing. Adding Greek yogurt or sour cream in combination with it lightens the flavor. Greek yogurt also makes less calories and adds a slight tang.
Dijon mustard adds complexity. Yellow mustard is key to this classic recipe, but we love it with a little Dijon mustard in combination. We regularly stock both in our fridge. If you don’t, using 100% yellow mustard works too.
This recipe just gets better over time! You can make a batch and store it in the refrigerator for days. Here are best practices when it comes to storage:
How long does potato salad last refrigerated? Up to 5 days.The flavor gets even better over time.
How long does potato salad last outside? Up to 1 hour. If serving outdoors, you can leave it unrefrigerated up to 1 hour, then return it to an ice-packed cooler.
How long does potato salad last at room temperature? Up to 2 hours. But try to minimize the time sitting at room temperature if possible.
Can you freeze potato salad? Freezing is not recommended because of the mayonnaise. Mayo doesn’t freeze well and can separate after freezing, and the potatoes can become discolored. Celery also doesn’t freeze well. The best way to extend the life is keeping it in the refrigerator.
Potato salad variations
Want to try another spin on this classic recipe? Here are a few variations that can compete with this tasty recipe:
French Potato Salad is sophisticated and flavor-packed, featuring a zingy vinaigrette, red potatoes, capers, and parsley
Dill Potato Salad is classic and bursting with fresh herbs and flavored with olive oil and vinegar
Vegan Potato Salad tastes like this potato salad recipe, but uses cashews to make a creamy sauce
Boil the potatoes: Quarter the potatoes, keeping the skins on. Place them in a large saucepan filled with cold water. Bring it to a boil and cook for 8 to 15 minutes until tender when pricked with a fork. Drain and rinse the potatoes under cold water. Allow to cool slightly, then peel the skins off with your fingers and cut the potatoes into bite-sized pieces. Place the potatoes into a bowl and sprinkle with 2 tablespoons of the white wine vinegar and ½ teaspoon of the kosher salt. Mix and let stand 5 minutes.
In a large bowl, mix the mayonnaise, Greek yogurt or sour cream, yellow mustard, Dijon mustard, celery seed, 1 tablespoon of the white wine vinegar, ¾ of the teaspoon kosher salt, and plenty of fresh ground pepper. Add the potatoes, celery, green onion, red onion, and sweet pickle relish and stir until fully combined. For best results, chill 2 hours before serving. Stores 5 days refrigerated.
*The variety here is important: use Yukon gold or gold potatoes for best results.
This colorful couscous salad recipe tastes irresistibly fresh with herbs, garlic, and lemon! It’s ideal as a side dish, lunches, picnics or potlucks.
Here’s a salad that’s about as delightful as they come: this fresh and herby Couscous Salad! It’s an ideal way to use Israeli couscous, those delightfully chewy pasta spheres. Throw it together with fresh dill and mint, garlic, lemon and a pile of vegetables, then sprinkle with salty feta. Take a bite and it’s irresistibly fresh and savory: we couldn’t stop eating it! This deli-style Israeli couscous salad works for lunch or picnics, or as a colorful side for fish, chicken or the grill. Really, what can’t this salad do? With one bite you’ll be smitten.
Ingredients in this couscous salad recipe
A couscous salad could work with Moroccan couscous, which has very small irregular pieces. But this one uses the larger perfectly round Israeli couscous, which technically isn’t couscous at all! We like an Israeli couscous salad because the larger size has a more distinguishable texture when mixed in with the veggies. Here’s what you’ll need for this salad:
Israeli couscous (aka pearl couscous)
Fresh dill and fresh mint
Feta cheese crumbles
Lemon juice and zest
Salt and pepper
Simply cook up the Israeli couscous, slice the veggies, and mix everything together! It’s quick and simple, and the flavor is unbelievably refreshing with a pop of acidity.
Couscous vs Israeli couscous
A little background on couscous! What’s the difference between standard couscous and Israeli couscous? Make sure to grab Israeli couscous when shopping for this recipe. Here’s what to know:
Couscous is a North African pasta with tiny grains made from semolina flour. Its texture looks like grains of rice or quinoa, but’s actually a pasta! It originated with the Berbers of Algeria and Morocco between the 11th century and 13th century. It’s a cultural dish of the Maghrebi cuisines in the countries of Algeria, Tunisia, Mauritania, Morocco, and Libya. Couscous has very small, irregular grains. It’s the standard variety and labeled “couscous” at the grocery (it typically won’t include the word Moroccan).
Israeli couscous akapearl couscous is larger and shaped like balls. It’s technically considered a pasta and not couscous, since the grains are large and shaped exactly the same. It’s always been machine made, whereas couscous is made by hand. The food was invented in Israel in the 1950’s when the government needed to feed masses of immigrants.
Keep in mind: couscous is not gluten free and it’s not suitable for gluten-free diets. You can find gluten-free couscous online.
Look for baby arugula
One important note for this couscous salad: make sure to look for baby arugula! If you can’t find it, don’t substitute it with standard arugula. Here’s why:
Baby arugula has a feathery texture and is sold in bags or boxes. It has a delicately peppery flavor.
Standard arugula, sold in bunches, has a very spicy flavor that would overpower this salad!
Can’t find baby arugula? Substitute another baby green like baby spinach or baby kale.
Using fresh herbs in this couscous salad
This Israeli couscous salad goes big on herby flavor with fresh dill and fresh mint: they’re integral to the light, herbaceous flavor. But they can be expensive in winter months! Here are a few notes on working with fresh herbs:
If you can, use both fresh dill and mint. Growing your own herbs in the summer is the best way to keep this economical.
Want to use only one fresh herb? Go for the fresh dill and omit the mint.
Avoid substituting dried herbs: they have a much different flavor. If desired you can simply omit the herbs entirely: it still tastes good! (Just not quite as good.)
Ways to serve this couscous salad
This couscous salad is one of those ultra-versatile recipes that you can use for many different occasions and seasons. Here are some of our favorite ways to serve it:
½ cup feta cheese crumbles (omit for vegan and add more salt to taste)
2 tablespoons lemon juice, plus zest of ½ lemon
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon olive oil
Fresh ground black pepper
Bring 1 ½ cups water to a boil in a large saucepan. Add the Israeli couscous, garlic powder and ½ teaspoon of the kosher salt and reduce to a simmer. Cover with lid and cook 8 to 10 minutes, until the couscous is tender and the water is absorbed. Remove the couscous to a bowl, mix it with 1 teaspoon of the olive oil, and allow to stand for 2 to 3 minutes.
Meanwhile, mince the garlic and shallot. Slice the cherry tomatoes in half. Chop the dill and mint.
When the couscous is done resting, place it in a large bowl with the chopped vegetables and herbs. Add the baby arugula, feta cheese crumbles, lemon juice and zest, the remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil, ¼ teaspoon kosher salt, and a few grinds of black pepper. Mix gently to combine. Serve immediately or refrigerate for up to 5 days (flavor is best right away but tastes great after refrigeration; you may need to revive the flavors with a pinch or two of salt).
*Make sure to look for baby arugula, which has a feathery texture and is sold in bags or boxes. Standard arugula, sold in bunches, has much too spicy of a flavor. If you can’t find it, substitute another baby green like baby spinach or baby kale.
**If it’s winter and you’d like to pare back and use only one herb, go for the fresh dill. We highly recommend this salad with both fresh herbs (and try growing your own herbs in the summer). Avoid substituting dried herbs: you can simply omit the herbs entirely and it still tastes good.
There’s a change in the air on Memorial Day. It’s a long weekend, it’s finally grilling season, and the last day of school is just a few weeks away. There’s so much to get excited about on the first (unofficial) day of summer, starting with these 31 si…
There’s a change in the air on Memorial Day. It’s a long weekend, it’s finally grilling season, and the last day of school is just a few weeks away. There’s so much to get excited about on the first (unofficial) day of summer, starting with these 31 side dishes to serve with burgers, ribs, and more on Memorial Day.
Panzanella is, inherently, a summer salad. After all, it’s a canvas for in-season tomatoes and fresh basil. This recipe emphasizes early summer produce like garlic scapes, which are whirred into a pesto marinade (so much tastier than a splash of red wine vinegar, IMO).
This farro salad recipe mixes fresh veggies and a tangy dressing with this hearty whole grain! It makes a satisfying side dish or lunch salad.
Need a killer side salad or a fun lunch salad? Here’s a recipe that works as both: this Hearty Farro Salad! Farro is an ancient grain with a chewy texture and nutty flavor that’s burst on the scene in the past few years. It’s great as a side dish seasoned with garlic and herbs, but it’s also ideal for grain salads. This one is our new ultimate, pairing the whole grain with juicy tomatoes, earthy mushrooms, feathery arugula, savory pops of cheese, and a zingy vinaigrette.
Ingredients in this farro salad
This farro salad is fresh and veggie-packed, perfect as a side dish for dinner or as a lunch salad. You can save it up to 4 days refrigerated, so we typically use it for both! The flavor is Mediterranean-style, with a beautiful rainbow of jumbled vegetables. Here are the main ingredients you’ll need to make this farro salad:
Farro: pearled or semi pearled
Shallot and garlic
Cherry tomatoes, rainbow if possible
Button or cremini mushrooms
Fresh herbs: fresh chives, mint or basil
Baby arugula: use only baby arugula here! Standard arugula has too strong of a flavor. For a substitute, use other baby greens.
Manchego cheese: or use Parmesan or fontina cheese (omit for vegan)
Types of farro
Farro is a whole grain that’s plump and chewy, with a texture similar to barley. It’s been a staple in Italian cuisine for centuries and recently spread to global popularity. Farro can be boiled on the stovetop, cooked in a rice cooker, or in a pressure cooker (Instant Pot). There are a few types you can find in American grocery stores:
Pearled farro has all of the bran removed from the grain, making it quicker to cook but removing some fiber. The cook time is 15 to 20 minutes.
Semi-pearled farro has part of the bran removed, retaining some additional fiber. The cook time is 25 to 30 minutes.
Whole farro is the whole grain and takes the longest to cook, but it’s harder to find in grocery stores (in the US). So this farro salad works with pearled or semi pearled!
Keep in mind: the labeling of this grain in the grocery store can be confusing. Many packages don’t contain the words pearled or semi-pearled (looking at you, Bob’s Red Mill). Check the cook time on the package as a guide.
Tips on substitutions
This farro salad is pretty forgiving, and you can substitute or add different vegetables or cheese to taste. Here are a few ideas:
Mushrooms: omit if you’re not a mushroom fan, but the raw mushrooms add a great earthy flavor and soft texture here!
Baby arugula: don’t substitute standard arugula sold in bunches; it’s much too spicy! Use other baby greens like baby spinach or baby kale.
Cheese: Manchego cheese is a Spanish cheese with a sweet, fruity flavor and firm texture that’s fabulous here! If you can’t find it, try Parmesan shavings instead. Or for a fun variation use Fontina cheese (like this Farro with Roasted Vegetables). You can also omit the cheese for vegan.
Tomatoes: Out of season, look for greenhouse or hydroponic cherry tomatoes. Or add ripe, local cherry tomatoes in summer! For allergies, try another red vegetable like red pepper.
Ways to serve this farro salad
This farro salad is so versatile and works with many different meal concepts. Here are some ideas:
¼ cup chopped fresh herbs (like fresh chives, mint or basil)
2 cups baby arugula (or other baby greens)
½ cup Manchego cheese, sliced into chunks (or Parmesan shavings or fontina cheese; omit for vegan)
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
½ teaspoon dried oregano
3 tablespoons olive oil
Cook the farro: Rinse the farro under cold water in a fine mesh strainer. In a large saucepan, place the farro, 3 cups water and ½ teaspoon of the kosher salt and bring it to a boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer, cover, and cook until the grains are tender, about 15 to 20 minutes for pearled farro and 25 to 30 minutes for semi-pearled farro. Taste test a grain to see if it is tender (if the package is unmarked, just cook until tender). Drain any excess water. Stir in the additional ¼ teaspoon salt. Place on a baking sheet in a single layer and place in the freezer for 3 minutes until room temperature. (This step can be completed up to 2 days in advance; refrigerate the farro until making the salad.)
Prep the veggies: Meanwhile, chop the shallot, garlic, cherry tomatoes, mushrooms, carrot, and fresh herbs as noted in the ingredient list above. Place the veggies in a large bowl, then add the baby arugula, cheese, and farro.
Make the dressing: In a medium bowl, whisk together the lemon juice, Dijon mustard, oregano, and ¼ teaspoon kosher salt. Gradually whisk in the olive oil 1 tablespoon at a time, until creamy.
Serve: Add the dressing to the bowl with farro and vegetables and toss. Taste and add another pinch or two of salt if desired. (Stores up to 4 days refrigerated; you may need to add a pinch or two more salt after refrigeration since it can dull the flavors.)
Summer is officially here, which can only mean one thing: a spike in allergy medication sales. It also means the triumphant return of picnic season and we’ll be damned if watery eyes, itchy ears, and a stuffy nose will prevent us from partaking in one …
Summer is officially here, which can only mean one thing: a spike in allergy medication sales. It also means the triumphant return of picnic season and we’ll be damned if watery eyes, itchy ears, and a stuffy nose will prevent us from partaking in one of our favorite warm-weather activities.
As home cooks who encourage people to partake in easy, simple recipes, it feels almost blasphemous to recommend grocery store products in place of homemade options. But sometimes life is busy and there is no shame in this game when it comes to making Trader Joe’s runs to stock up on all of the outdoor-eating essentials. Plus, with the temperatures being so unpredictable, invitations to backyard soirees and barbecues can be super last-minute and you never want to be unprepared.
It’s happening, friends! It’s really happening. Summer is upon us, and as long as we stay smart and follow the most up-to-date CDC rules, it looks like we are going to be able to enjoy the warm weather with our friends and family in familiar and welcom…
It’s happening, friends! It’s really happening. Summer is upon us, and as long as we stay smart and follow the most up-to-date CDC rules, it looks like we are going to be able to enjoy the warm weather with our friends and family in familiar and welcome ways.
This also means it’s time to stock up on the things that make these outdoor gatherings the most successful (and delicious!). A leisurely meandering around a Costco in Brookfield, Connecticut, resulted in a laundry list of items that we all might consider for our upcoming get-togethers and day trips. There are treats to grill and glug, tools to keep us cool, and gadgets to make entertaining easier. Here are 15 Costco summer essentials I’ve got my eye on.
It’s the end of the long workday (or the start of an extra-long week) and we’re hungry. Like, “can’t-think-straight” hungry. Luckily, Food52 contributor EmilyC wants to do all the thinking for us. In Dinner’s Ready, her monthly column on weeknight wond…
It's the end of the long workday (or the start of an extra-long week) and we're hungry. Like, "can't-think-straight" hungry. Luckily, Food52 contributor EmilyC wants to do all the thinking for us. In Dinner's Ready, her monthly column on weeknight wonders, she shares three simple, flavor-packed recipes that are connected by a single idea or ingredient. Stick with Emily, and you'll have a good dinner on the table in no time. Today, three hearty, make-ahead salads to eat on the porch, in the park, anywhere.
If you’re like me, you’ve found yourself in a cooking rut at least once, if not a hundred times over, during this pandemic. I often find that my best laid dinner plans vaporize at the end of a long work day, when all I want to do is get outside and remind myself that it’s August (not March!). Even take-out—an exciting treat at first—has lost its allure.