Sunday, February 10, 2013

Creamy Farro Potato Salad

I recently stumbled on a new twist for America's favorite picnic dish, the potato salad.  The older I get, the more I try to incorporate good-for-you grains into everyday meals.  Grain Mains, written by Bruce Weinstein and Mark Scarbrough, has many creative ideas to do just that.  Their Wheatberry Spread is another favorite of mine, rolled in a large leaf of romaine lettuce, served like a wrap or used as hummus with crackers and veggies for scooping.  

Potatoes and Farro pair beautifully together in this great tasting salad.  It has all the flavors you recognize, with the extra benefit of this whole grain.

Creamy Farro Potato Salad
1 C whole grain farro
1 lb very small red potatoes, halved
2/3 C mayonnaise ( I used cilantro mayo)
2 Tb Dijon or coarse grained mustard
1 Tb brine from the dill pickle jar
1 tsp ground black pepper
3 celery stalks, thinly sliced
1/2 C minced onion, red or white
3 scallions, thinly sliced 
1 large dill pickle, diced
chopped fresh parsley (optional)
Soak the farro in a big bowl of cool water for at least 8 and up to 16 hours, then drain completely.  Pour the grains into a large saucepan, fill two thirds of the way with water, and bring to a boil over high heat.  Reduce the heat and simmer until tender, about 1 hour.  Drain; run under cool water to stop the cooking and drain thoroughly.
Steam the potatoes in a vegetable steamer until tender when pierced with a fork, about 15 minutes.  Cool the potatoes by running water over them in the steamer basket, and drain thoroughly.  
Whisk the mayonnaise, mustard, pickle brine, and pepper in a large serving bowl.  Stir in the celery, scallions, and diced pickle.  Add the cooked farro and potatoes.  Toss well and sprinkle with parsley.

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