Salad for Supper: Green Bean, Corn and Farro Salad

The best-producing plant from my container garden so far has been the green beans. They grew fast and well. I wanted to make a dinner salad that highlighted the beans, so I went searching for recipes online.

When I came across a salad on Epicurious that included green beans and farro, I knew I had to try it. I had just purchased some farro the day before and was eager to cook with it for the first time.

Farro is the grain from a certain species of wheat. It was commonly eaten during ancient Roman times. Now it is a specialty item, but it is growing in popularity. I found farro at my local Whole Foods. You can also substitute barley.

The main components of this dish are farro, green beans, corn, chicken and goat cheese. Although it would be ideal to use fresh corn, I wanted to try this dish with frozen corn to see if it could be made when fresh corn wasn’t in season. The frozen corn wasn’t quite as crunchy, but it was a perfectly good substitute. Frozen green beans are an equally reasonable substitute, for that matter.

The dressing (a vinaigrette with shallots and basil) ties everything together, and is one of the stand-out components of this dish. I really loved this salad, and will definitely be making it again.

It serves two people for dinner, or four as part of a larger meal.

Salad ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup farro
  • 3/4 pound green beans, trimmed and snapped in half
  • 2 cups frozen corn kernels, defrosted (or 2-3 ears of corn)
  • 8 ounces chicken breast (2 boneless breasts or 6 tenders)
  • 2 ounces goat cheese, crumbled
  • 1/2 cup scallions (3-4 scallions) white parts removed and roughly chopped

Dressing ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon basil leaves, chopped fine
  • 2 tablespoons shallot, diced fine
  • 1 teaspoon dijon mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • Pepper to taste

Uncooked (left); cooked (right).

Step 1. Cook the farro. Boil 2 cups of salted water, then add the farro and reduce to a simmer. Cook for 20-25 minutes, drain the water and set aside to cool.

 

 

Step 2. Cook the green beans. Bring a medium pot half-filled with salted water to boil. Add the prepared green beans and cook for 4 minutes. Drain the beans and run under cold water to keep from cooking further.

 

Step 3. Cook the chicken. Dice into 1/2-inch square pieces and cook with a little olive oil over medium-high heat. Season the chicken well with salt and pepper. Once chicken is cooked through (5-7 minutes), transfer to a bowl and set aside to cool.

Step 4. Make the dressing. Combine the oil, vinegar, basil, shallot mustard and salt in a medium bowl. Whisk together to incorporate the dressing ingredients.

 

 

Step 5. Build the salad. Combine the farro, beans, chicken, corn scallions and dressing. Toss to combine. Serve the salad on plates and crumble the goat cheese on top.

 

  • Gin

    I’m not familiar with farro–something new to try!

  • Jen

    I’ve never heard of farro either. How does it compare with other grains?

    • http://themanlyhousekeeper.com Mark Evitt

      It’s most similar to barley, and very easy to cook. Much faster than brown rice, for instance.

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