Make Ahead

Toasted Farro Salad with Roasted Leeks and Root Vegetables

February 24, 2015
4 Ratings
  • Serves 4
Author Notes

Toasted farro tossed with supple browned leeks, roasted turnips and rutabagas, lemony farmer's cheese, and lots of herbs is just the right kind of light dinner or hearty lunch for late winter. Though this salad is just lovely warm, its hearty ingredients hold up nicely in the fridge, too -- so make enough for leftovers. —Elizabeth Stark

What You'll Need
  • 2 leeks
  • 2 medium turnips, trimmed, peeled, and sliced into 1/2 inch-thick half moons
  • 1 large rutabaga, trimmed, peeled, and sliced into 1/2 inch-thick half moons
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • Sea salt, to taste
  • Ground black pepper, to taste
  • 3/4 cup dry farro
  • Zest of 1 lemon plus 2 tablespoons juice
  • 1/4 cup minced parsley, divided
  • 2 tablespoons minced dill, divided
  • 1/4 cup crumbled farmer's cheese
  1. Preheat the oven to 400° F. Move oven shelf to the top third of the oven. For easy cleanup, line one large and one small baking sheet with parchment.
  2. Trim the dark green section from the leeks, and halve lengthwise. Immerse leeks in water and shake out any sand and excess water. Trim the roots, and cut each half into 3-inch segments. In a medium-sized bowl, toss the leeks with 2 tablespoons olive oil, sea salt, and pepper. Spread the leeks out on the small baking sheet.
  3. In the same bowl used for the leeks, toss the turnip and rutabaga half moons with 1 tablespoon olive oil, sea salt, and black pepper. Spread out on the large baking sheet.
  4. Slide both baking sheets into the oven and roast for 20 minutes. Use a spatula to flip the turnips and rutabagas. The leeks should roast for 20 to 25 minutes, or until quite soft with browned edges. Roast the turnips and rutabagas until edges are nicely browned, 30 to 35 minutes total.
  5. Meanwhile, cook the farro. Set a large pot of salted water over high heat to boil. Set a large skillet over medium-high heat, add the dry farro, and, shaking the pan frequently, toast just until farro browns slightly and is fragrant, about 2 minutes. Add farro to the salted water and simmer for 20 minutes, or until farro still has a little bite. Drain, toss with 2 tablespoons lemon juice and 3 tablespoons minced parsley, and set aside.
  6. Toss the farmer's cheese with 2 tablespoons olive oil, lemon zest, sea salt, pepper, and a tablespoon each minced parsley and dill.
  7. To plate the salad, toss the farro with the roasted turnips and rutabagas. Top with roasted leeks, crumbled farmers cheese, and remaining dill and parsley, and toss gently.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Sandra Kehoe
    Sandra Kehoe
  • Scribbles
  • Danielle
  • annalopriore
  • Sal O'Neil
    Sal O'Neil
Elizabeth Stark, along with her husband Brian Campbell, chronicles her passion for simple, fresh recipes on the award-wining food blog Brooklyn Supper.

15 Reviews

Terri March 26, 2019
Just made this tonight for dinner. Soooo good! I did make some adjustments, not because I thought they necessarily were needed....I was just in a little different mood. I added beets and shallots to the mix. And I used a dressing from another farro recipe I like (basically equal parts tahini & lemon juice, 1 clove garlic, dashes cumin, cayenne, s&p. Add some olive oil if you like, or thin it with water or more lemon juice.) Layer your hot veggies, some goat cheese, farro and dressing. I anticipate making this again in warmer weather, but cubing the veg, then chilling it. Will probably use feta then. Can't wait.
Stephen G. April 13, 2018
Is this a warm salad? If so, has anyone served it cold?
JLoe October 3, 2017
Can I omit the cheese to make it vegan? Is there a another ingredient that you would use instead?
Sandra K. January 3, 2017
This dish is so delicious!!!! Definitely will make it again :) Couldn't find turnips so I used carrots. Worked perfectly.
Scribbles February 20, 2016
Nice that this is a Community Pick! I've made this numerous times over the past year (just this week in fact) and we still love it.
Scribbles March 4, 2015
Oh, I forgot, I used homemade ricotta instead of farmer's cheese - out of this world delicious.
Scribbles March 4, 2015
Made this for dinner and it was so delicious! It sounded like all the right ingredients for me but, I have to admit, as I was putting all the components together I just wasn't sure how it was going to turn out. To my great delight, and my husbands, it was really really good and satisfying. I roasted turnip, yellow beet, carrots, leeks, red onions, yellow bell pepper and a sweet potato...I wanted a really flavorsome selection. And, I couldn't find fresh dill so used coriander - loved it and can't wait to make it again...thanks so much!
Elizabeth S. March 6, 2015
Ha! Sorry to give you a scare there, Scribbles, but really glad things worked out! It is kind of a mishmash of flavors, but I too love how they come together. I like the vivid selection of ingredients you used! (And ricotta? Yes!)
Danielle March 3, 2015
Absolutely delicious. I really loved this salad. I'm not sure if I got a weird rutabaga, but I found the turnip cooked perfectly, while some pieces of rutabaga ended up a bit tough. Wasn't a major catastrophe by any means.

Also, I didn't see direction for the 2 tbsp of lemon juice, so I just topped the salad with it at the end, along with the rest of the herbs.

Elizabeth S. March 6, 2015
Hi Danielle, So glad to hear you liked the recipe! The lemon juice gets tossed with the farro after it's been cooked, but your approach sounds equally delicious. Thanks for checking out the recipe!

Also, late season storage foods can really vary in quality in texture. I'm sorry to hear the rutabaga was tough.
annalopriore March 1, 2015
When/Where does the second tablespoon of dill go? Thanks!
Elizabeth S. March 1, 2015
Hi Anna, The remaining tablespoon of dill and leftover parsley should go on the finished salad just before serving. I'll update the recipe right away. Thanks for noticing that!
Sal O. March 1, 2015
This looks absolutely beautiful. Must try!
Anne February 27, 2015
This is a delicious and filling salad! I added beet and sweet potatoes instead of the rutabaga because that was what I had from my CSA. I also loved the addition of a fresh cheese (I subbed in queso fresca for the farmers cheese). It was a perfectly balanced dish. I can't wait to eat the leftovers for lunch today :)
Elizabeth S. March 6, 2015
Hi Anne, Perfection! The flavors are definitely versatile enough to work with any number of winter vegetables. I'm jealous of your CSA haul, though! Thanks for dropping by and sharing your feedback.