Farro, Golden Beet, and Feta Salad with​ ​Pecans and Chive-Sage Dressing

October 2, 2013


Author Notes: This is a beautifully autumnal dish, although I admit to making it year-round. Farro is such a delicious grain​,​ and when paired with roasted golden beets, tangy feta, pecans glazed with maple, and cayenne​ and​ then dressed with a fresh herb dressing of chive-sage oil and lemon, ​it makes for a healthy side that bursts with flavor and seasonal freshness.​​ It adds a visual wow to your table too!em-i-lis

Food52 Review: WHO: Em-i-lis is a stay-at-home mom and avid cook living in Washington, D.C. with her husband and two sons.
WHAT: A farro and beet side that ​'s just as ​​refreshing​ as it is hearty
HOW: While the beets are roasting in the oven, cook the farro.​ Meanwhile,​ cook the chives and sage in a saucepan with olive oil and lemon juice ​and, in another pan, coat the pecans in warm maple syrup. Toss the cooked farro​ and​ chopped beets​ together with​ ​the pecans and some ​crumbled feta​ ​pecans, then pour the warm herbed olive oil dressing over the mix.
WHY WE LOVE IT: This warm autumn salad -- hold the lettuce -- is exactly the kind of thing we want to be eating while the temperature outside continues to drop. The herbed dressing paired with the farro and beets make it both filling and comforting, enough so that I enjoyed it as my main dish for dinner. If you can't find yellow beets, red beets work fine, though you'd be missing out on the bright addition this golden mix brings to your dinner table.
The Editors

Serves: 4 to 6

Ingredients

  • 3 golden beets
  • 1 3/4 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 cup farro
  • 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt, divided
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon chopped fresh chives
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh sage
  • Juice of half a lemon
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/3 cup pecans
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup (preferably Grade B)
  • 1 dash (small) cayenne pepper
  • Piece of foil sprayed with nonstick spray
  • 1/3 cup crumbled feta (preferably a good-quality tangy and creamy one in water so it's not too dry)

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 385° F. Wash and trim (but don’t peel) the beets, and wrap them individually in foil or place them snugly in a small baking dish and cover tightly with foil. Cook 35 to 45 minutes, or until easily pierced with a knife. Remove from oven and let cool until you can peel them. Peel and chop into 1/2-inch cubes, then set aside.
  2. In the meantime, pour the broth into a 2-quart saucepan, cover and bring to a boil. When it’s boiling, pour in the farro, reduce the heat so that you can maintain a nice simmer, and cook until just on the tender side of al dente, 15 to 25 minutes. Drain and reserve.
  3. In the meantime, heat the olive oil in a small saucepan until very warm. Remove from heat and add the chopped chives and sage as well as 1 teaspoon of kosher salt, the lemon juice, and at least 1/4 teaspoon of freshly ground black pepper. Whisk together and then let rest until you need it.
  4. In a small skillet set over medium heat, add the pecans. When the skillet is warm, pour in the maple syrup and the dash of cayenne. Stir continuously until the pecans are evenly coated and the syrup is bubbling nicely. Pour onto the sprayed sheet of foil and let cool.
  5. In a mixing bowl, toss together the cooked farro, chopped beets, crumbled feta, and pecans. Whisk the herbed oil dressing again and pour it over the farro salad. Stir gently until well combined and add salt to taste.

More Great Recipes:
Salad|Cheese|Grains|Vegetable|Serves a Crowd|Make Ahead|Spring|Fall|Winter|Thanksgiving|Vegetarian|Side

Reviews (31) Questions (0)

31 Comments

txchick57 December 10, 2017
Just made this. Absolutely superb. A permanent place in the meal rotation. Thanks!
 
Author Comment
em-i-lis December 10, 2017
Oh, fantastic! Thanks so much for letting me know. :) Glad it’s a hit!!
 
rmandell October 7, 2017
Made this again for a pot luck last night. Several people asked me for the recipe. I swapped out roasted carrots for beets and the effect is pretty similar. Fun introducing people to farro.
 
Author Comment
em-i-lis October 7, 2017
I'm so glad you enjoy this recipe, and I agree, spreading the word about farro is great!! :)
 
Niki June 2, 2016
OMG. This was insane. My husband told me to put it in the permanent archives. Haha. The only tweak I made was I put a tablespoon of maple into the dressing, and I used fresh thyme instead of sage. I can't WAIT to eat the leftovers today!
 
Author Comment
em-i-lis June 2, 2016
I'm SO thrilled y'all enjoyed this! I often add a bit of extra maple too. Enjoy today's leftovers!!
 
Kristen B. March 29, 2016
do you guys have the nutrition facts per serving for your recipes?
 
kay H. March 8, 2016
I treated this as a main dish adding chicken, red bell pepper, and spinach. I also spiced up the dressing a bit with lemon zest, more lemon, red pepper flakes, and garlic. yummy
 
Author Comment
em-i-lis March 8, 2016
So glad you made it your own and enjoyed it!
 
lauriw July 7, 2015
This requires a lot of steps for a salad but it is so delicious that it's worth every dirty dish!
 
Author Comment
em-i-lis July 8, 2015
I'm so glad you think so!! :) Thank you!
 
Erin.Quinn May 30, 2015
This salad is amazing. Even those who don't like beets loved this salad.
 
Author Comment
em-i-lis May 30, 2015
Hi Erin, I'm so thrilled that you like the salad! Thanks so much for trying it and for letting me know! Best, Emily
 
4aces January 19, 2015
full disclosure: this is alot of work for me to consider for a salad...having said that...wow! it was totally worth it! so delish! i'm always looking for ways to have more beets in my life & to use sage (underappreciated, imo) and this was just perfect! i'll be making this again. thank you for posting. :)
 
Author Comment
em-i-lis January 19, 2015
Hey there 4aces, I'm so glad you took the plunge and feel it's worth it. Agree with you on sage being underappreciated! This is one of my fave dishes, and I'm really happy you liked it too!
 
Chelsea P. January 17, 2015
Delish!! Thank you... I added chopped romaine, radicchio, and raw green beans for crunch and greenery as well as homemade tumeric-pickled fennel and onions.... yum yum!
 
Author Comment
em-i-lis January 17, 2015
I'm so happy you enjoyed it!!
 
Sugartoast January 15, 2015
Yeah, congratulations!! Love this dish, and lucky me, I've had the pleasure of having it made by the chef herself :)
 
Author Comment
em-i-lis January 15, 2015
Aw, thanks! :)
 
Jess January 14, 2015
Love beets in all their guises, so I'm sure I'll love this. Question: what do you estimate the weight (or measuring cup) of the beets to be?
 
Author Comment
em-i-lis January 15, 2015
Hi Jess, About a pound of beets, give or take. It's fairly flexible, but that's usually the rough weight of what I include! :)
 
Jess January 15, 2015
Emily, thank you so much for your answer. I appreciate the info!
 
Author Comment
em-i-lis January 15, 2015
Of course! I hope you enjoy the salad!
 
AntoniaJames January 14, 2015
My kind of salad! I usually have beets (sometimes pickled, sometimes not, often some of each!) in my fridge this time of year, so I'm looking forward to making this, soon. (Bet the beet greens, sliced thinly and sauteed briefly in the pan used to warms the herbs, would make this even better.) Congrats on the Wildcard win. ;o)
 
Author Comment
em-i-lis January 14, 2015
Thanks, AJ! I hope you enjoy it!
 
Kukla January 14, 2015
Congratulations Emily! I love all kind of grain salads.
 
Author Comment
em-i-lis January 14, 2015
Thank you so much, Kukla!! Me too!
 
Bevi October 3, 2013
Gorgeous! and beautiful photo.
 
Author Comment
em-i-lis October 3, 2013
Thank you, Bevi! This is one of my favorite new dishes- I kept hoping my husband didn't love it as much bc then there'd be more for me. :)
 
Midge October 2, 2013
Love the beet/feta/farro combo. Saved!
 
Author Comment
em-i-lis October 2, 2013
Thanks so much, midge!!!