Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Seitan - Farro Salad

Seitan - Farro Salad

Farro is a wheat-based Italian whole grain. Seitan is a high protein, wheat - based vegetarian alternative to meat. This recipe, from the True Food cookbook, calls for chicken but I substituted seitan.  The first time I made the recipe it did not work out for me (*). Seeing the great potential, I made it again with revisions noted below and now love it. 

Tips for this recipe:  I found the salad to be too sweet and in making it again I reduced the honey in the dressing to 1t.  The dried fruit lends enough sweetness and the dressing doesn't call for mustard or herbs and seasoning to balance the sugar). I also felt that the salad had too much dressing (1 c for 6 servings?) so I slowly added in the dressing, working my way up to the consistency I like. For salad dressing, you typically assume 1 -2 T per serving depending on the salad ingredients so in this instance that would 6T - 3/4 c.

Seitan - Farro Salad

1/2 c farro {if you have the choice, buy whole grain vs. pearled}
9 c mixed baby greens {I used baby arugula and baby spinach}
1c + 1/2 c seitan, chopped {found at natural food stores and Whole Foods}
1/3 c unsweetened dried cranberries {if you only have access to sweetened, don't use any honey in the dressing) 
1/3 c pitted, chopped dates
2 oz. Manchego cheese, shaved with a vegetable peeler
1/4 t salt
1/4 c chopped Marcona almonds
and for the Champagne vinaigrette dressing
- 1/4 c champagne vinegar
1 T honey {I recommend 1 t, if any at all}
1/4 t salt
fresh ground pepper
3/4 c expeller-pressed organic canola oil {due to the controversy over canola oil, I used olive oil}

Prepare the 1/2 c raw farro per your packaging instructions.  Set aside to cool.

Place the remaining salad ingredients {except the almonds} in a bowl and toss. Mix in cooled farro.

To make the vinaigrette, place the first four vinaigrette ingredients in a bowl and whisk. Slowly add the oil and whisk until incorporated.

Slowly add in desired amount of dressing {1/2 the recipe or 1/2 c was more than enough for me}.

Divide salad among plates and top with almonds. 

Store leftover vinaigrette in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

Serves 6.

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Source: Adapted from True Food cookbook, Dr. Weil

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