I’m starting this post with an alert. You have been warned… this post contains “mad” love! Please read no further if you have an aversion to “mad” love!
Last weekend, at the end of a long (but fun) Saturday away from Springfield in St. Louis with Audra, Bueno handed me the Weekend Journal of the Wall Street Journal. I expected to get right to my chores when I got home, but he asked me if I would take a minute, sit down, and read the In My Kitchen column featuring Julian Niccolini from Manhattan’s Four Seasons. I could see that he wanted me to take the time to read it right then. I didn’t want to disappoint him. Bueno said, “See if you can figure out why I loved this article so much…I LOVED it!”
He went to work out, and I sat down to read while the boys played with their Legos. I knew that the piece — emphasizing Niccolini’s simple life at home and cooking meals for his family—resonated with Bueno. I also read that his wife had compiled a cookbook of his favorite dishes – and I knew Bueno felt that way about me documenting our recipes. When I got to the end of the article, I found it…why he LOVED the article so much. At the end of the article, Julian says that, without question, the smartest thing he ever did was marry his wife. He states, “I love her. She changed everything.” My eyes filled with tears, not only because I knew this was how Bueno felt about me, but also that he was so eager to share his “mad” love with me. I went down to the basement where he was working out – and with a full heart and a huge smile, I simply said, “I found it!!
Julian shared his Farro recipe with WSJ readers and I share my Farro Salad recipe with you. xoxo, dana
- 14 ounces organic italian pearled farro
- 4 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 3-4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (for vinaigrette)
- 3 tablespoons chopped fresh rosemary
- kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
- 6 halves oven roasted zucchini
- 2 cups fresh spinach leaves, cut or torn
- ½ cup toasted walnuts
- Soak farro in cold water for 8 hours
- Drain and combine farro with 6 cups fresh water in a medium saucepan
- Add a little kosher salt to water and bring to a boil over high heat.
- Reduce the heat to medium low, cover pan, and simmer until farro is tender (about 30 minutes).
- Drain well and transfer farro to a large bowl to cool.
- Roasted zucchini
- Wash and trim zucchini.
- Cut zucchini in half, lengthwise.
- Brush both sides with olive oil – sprinkle with kosher salt and pepper.
- Place on a baking sheet and roast in a preheated 350 degree oven for 15 minutes, turn zucchini over – roast another 15 minutes (or until a fork pierces the zucchini easily).
- Remove pan from oven and allow zucchini to cool. When cool cut into chunks for salad.
- Prepare vinaigrette
- Add 4 tablespoons lemon juice, 3-4 tablespoons olive oil, 3 tablespoons chopped fresh rosemary to a small bowl and whisk together.
- Add kosher salt and black pepper to taste.
- Farro Salad
- Add cut zucchini, torn spinach leaves, and toasted walnuts to bowl of cooled farro.
- Stir to combine ingredients with farro.
- Add desired amount of vinaigrette and stir to combine salad.
- Serve farro salad at room temperature.
- Salad can be refrigerated overnight. Bring to room temperature before serving.