Watercress and Farro
- 2 cups cooked farro (a type of hulled wheat typically used in salads, soups and side dishes)
- 1 large butternut squash, cut into ½ inch cubes
- 1/2 cup whipped goat cheese
- 1/4 cup toasted hazelnuts, roughly chopped
- 2 cups cleaned watercress, rinsed and dried
- 1 cup apple cider vinaigrette
- 2 tablespoons butter
- Salt and pepper to taste
To cook farro:
Start out with 1 liter of water and 1 liter of apple cider. Season water with salt until lightly seasoned.
Bring farro to a boil from cold, and cook for about 20 minutes until the farro has bloomed and is slightly al dente.
Drain and chill farro.
To make whipped goat cheese:
In a food processor combine goat cheese, salt and pepper along with 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil and pulse until the goat cheese slightly smooths out.
Be careful not to over-whip the goat cheese or it will become watery.
To make vinaigrette:
- 1 gallon apple cider, reduced down to 2 cups
- 1 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
- Salt and pepper
In a large bowl combine apple cider reduction, balsamic vinegar and seasonings, whisk to combine. While continually whisking, drizzle in oil to emulsify. Resulting vinaigrette should be smooth and slightly thick. This recipe makes roughly 1 quart of vinaigrette.
Melt butter in a large sauté pan until it begins to lightly brown. Add in the squash and sauté for 1 minute to reheat and lightly color. Add in the hazelnuts along with a touch of olive oil to stop the browning of the butter. Add in the farro and saute another minute or so to merry all the flavors. Deglaze pan with 2 tablespoons of the vinaigrette and season.
Spread the whipped goat cheese on the bottom of warm plates in a round shape. Mound the farro and squash mixture in the center of the plates. Toss watercress with vinaigrette just to coat leaves. Do not overdress and season. Top warm farro with watercress and drizzle more vinaigrette around plate for serving.