Basil Pesto Farro with Roasted Acorn Squash

farro-squash

Now that it’s June, there’s sure to be plenty of family cookouts and picnics with friends, and it’s nice to have a fresh summer main dish that can be served at home or taken to-go. I served this flavorful dish one night last week when we had some friends over to try out our new back porch, and it was the perfect accompaniment to the delicious grilled eggplant and fresh corn and blueberry salad that we served on the side. If you have extra farro, it can be served as a side dish without the squash!

Serves 4

Ingredients:

For the squash:

  • 1 medium acorn squash
  • 1 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
  • sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper

For the pesto (this will make about 1 cup, so you won’t use it all in the farro):

  • 1/4 cup pine nuts
  • 2 whole black peppercorns
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 2 cups fresh basil leaves
  • 1 cup freshly grated Parmesan
  • 1/2 tbsp. lemon juice
  • 1 tsp. sea salt
  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil

For the farro:

  • 1 cup raw farro
  • 1/4 cup homemade pesto
  • 2/3  cup crumbled feta cheese
  • 1 bunch radish bulbs, thinly sliced
  • sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper
  • squeeze of fresh lemon juice

Directions:

For the squash:

  1. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.
  2. Cut the acorn squash into 1/2-inch rings, then remove the seeded center with a biscuit cutter or round cookie cutter. Discard the center.
  3. Rub the rings with the olive oil, season with salt and pepper, and place them on a sheet pan.
  4. Roast the squash for about 10 minutes, flip them over, then roast for 5 minutes more, until golden brown and tender. Transfer to a serving platter.

For the pesto:

  1. In a food processor, combine the pine nuts, peppercorns and garlic. Pulse a few times.
  2. Add the basil, parmesan, lemon juice, salt, and 1/4 cup olive oil; process until very fine.
  3. Gradually add the rest of the oil to taste — you may not need it all. Pulse until smooth.

For the farro:

  1. In a saucepan, combine the farro with 2  1/2 cups water. Bring to a simmer, cover, and reduce the heat to low. Simmer for 25 minutes, or until the water is fully absorbed. Remove from heat; cool.
  2. In a bowl, combine the farro, pesto, feta cheese and radishes. Add salt, pepper, and lemon juice to taste.
  3. Spoon the farro into the squash rings, and enjoy!

Recipe adapted from Bountiful

 

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