Serves 6 people
8 ounces (about 1 ½ cups) farro, preferably “perlato,” or semipearled, or wheat berries, picked over and rinsed
1 pound cucumbers, cut into ¼-inch dice
1 medium red onion, cut into ¼-inch dice
1 red finger chile or Serrano chile, cut into tiny dice
1/3 cup packed fresh basil leaves, thinly sliced (chiffonade)
½ cup Red Wine Vinaigrette (recipe below)
Maldon or other flaky sea salt
Red Wine Vinaigrette
Makes 1 Cup
¼ cup red wine vinegar, preferably Chianti
¼ cup sparkling water
½ cup extra virgin olive oil, preferably Ligurian
Whisk the vinegar, water, and olive oil together in a small bowl. (The vinaigrette can be refrigerated for up to 5 days.)
Combine the faro and water to over by 2 inches in a large saucepan and bring to a simmer, skimming off the foam. Reduce the heat to a bare simmer and cook until the farro is just tender, about 25 minutes if using pearled farro, about 1 ½ hours if using whole-grain farro (or wheat berries).
Drain the farro and transfer to a large bowl. Add the cucumbers, onion, chile, and basil, mixing well. Add the vinaigrette, tossing well. Season well with salt and serve, or let stand at room temperature for 1 hour to bring out the flavors.
The farro can be refrigerated for up to 3 days; bring to room temperature before serving.
Recipe courtesy of Molto Gusto (ecco 2010)