This is a photo of Sean Brock's Farrotto with Acorn Squash and Red Russian Kale from his new cookbook Heritage. I've had my eye on this recipe since I got the book in October. And last night, I finally made it.
Farrotto is essentially farro, an ancient wheat variety, cooked slowly with stock like risotto. It gets creamy with a nutty, chewy texture. It's a pretty hearty dish, but better for you than arborio rice. Apparently, "it’s rich in the cyanogenic glucosides that stimulate the immune system, regulate blood sugar levels, and lower cholesterol."
I didn't follow Brock's recipe exactly--because I am so horrible about following recipes & it was a week night--but my slightly altered version was quite delicious. Brock calls for toasting the farro in the oven and roasting the squash then pureeing it. I toasted the farro on the stovetop and just sautéed the squash in some olive oil with the onions & garlic. I didn't mind the chunkier texture. I seasoned the cooked farro with Herbs de Provence and added a little sour cream to finish the dish.
I served the farrotto with a piece of simply seared cod on top (seasoned with salt & pepper and finished with lemon juice & butter).
I don't have any pictures of my dish because I was too busy being smitten and googly-eyed over my new guy (together 10 weeks tomorrow, y'all), who came over for dinner.
Farro Risotto with Butternut & Kale
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 yellow onion, diced
2 garlic cloves, sliced thin
12 ounces butternut squash, peeled & chopped *
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 1/2 cups farro
1/2 cup dry white wine
8 cups chicken or vegetable stock (homemade, please), heated & kept warm
1 teaspoon Herbs de Provence
1/2 bunch kale, stems removed & chopped
4 tablespoons sour cream
1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Kosher salt & freshly-ground black pepper
* I used Mann's new "Culinary Cuts" Butternut Squash Zig Zags, which I was introduced to at a bloggers' event on Tuesday. These are pre-cut pieces of fresh squash with no preservatives. Handy!
- Sauté the onion & garlic in the olive oil over medium heat, just until it begins to soften. Add the squash, season with salt & pepper, then cook until just tender. Remove from the pan.
- Add the butter to the pan and toast the farro until browned and fragrant.
- Add the wine & cook until the wine is almost evaporated, about 2 minutes, stirring frequently.
- Add 1/2 cup of the warm stock & stir until the liquid is almost absorbed. Continue cooking, adding 1/2 cup of warm stock at a time, stirring to prevent scorching and letting each addition be absorbed before adding the next, until you've used all the stock. The farro will look creamy like risotto. Season the farro with the herbs, salt, and pepper.
- Add the squash & kale, and stir until the kale is wilted. Stir in the sour cream & cheese. Check for seasoning before serving.