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Farro Risotto with Mushrooms and Tuscan Kale is a hearty and delicious side dish for any meal!
All week long, we’re sharing recipes that we made for a recent dinner party with friends, and this Farro Risotto with Mushrooms and Tuscan Kale is absolutely delicious!
Our good friends Sandi and David absolutely loved this recipe (we did too!) so we were more than happy to make the recipe again – this time, taking photos – so we could share the recipe with them, as well as here on A Family Feast.
This Farro Risotto with Mushrooms and Tuscan Kale was inspired by a recipe on the back of a package of Bob’s Red Mill Farro. Farro is an ancient grain – emmer wheat – that has gained a lot of popularity in recent years. Jack and I first ate it on our honeymoon in Italy, and it’s a hearty, chewy and very delicious!
In today’s recipe, the farro is prepared risotto-style, where it is sautéed in a pan of olive oil, onions, Tuscan Kale, and garlic before any liquid is added to the pan. This initial sauté step helps the farro absorb some extra flavor before it is hit with a splash of white wine, then simmered in vegetable stock.
How do you make farro risotto?
Like other rice-based risottos, this Farro Risotto with Mushrooms and Tuscan Kale is simmered in a pot with vegetable broth that is added one ladle at a time. The next ladle is added only after the farro has absorbed the stock, stirring frequently as you go.
This low and slow cooking process, prevents the farro from over cooking and getting too mushy, and it also yields a creamy but still chewy (al dente) texture.
About mid-way through the cooking process, we added sliced mushrooms to cook along with the farro mixture and the mushrooms also added additional earthy flavor to the Farro Risotto with Mushrooms and Tuscan Kale.
Once the farro is tender, we stirred in some butter and grated Parmesan cheese – plus salt and pepper to taste, as needed. (Depending on the saltiness of your vegetable stock, you may not need additional seasoning.)
Immediately serve your Farro Risotto with Mushrooms and Tuscan Kale as a side dish to our Pan Seared Halibut with Lemon Caper Sauce.
You may also like these other farro and risotto recipes:
- Farro with Butternut Squash and Baby Kale
- Farro Salad with Grapes, Goat Cheese and Tarragon Vinaigrette
- Mushroom Risotto
- Three Cheese Risotto
- Sausage and Broccoli Rabe Risotti
1 cup dry farro, soaked overnight (see Step 1, as well a Notes section below)
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 cup sweet onion, diced such as Vidalia
4 cups Tuscan kale chopped, see Notes section below
2 tablespoons fresh garlic, minced
1/3 cup white wine
1 quart (4 cups) vegetable broth, make our homemade broth recipe, or use canned
2 8-ounce packages white mushrooms, sliced
4 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1 teaspoon kosher salt (only if vegetable stock isn’t too salty)
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Soak farro overnight in two or more cups of water then drain when ready to use.
About 45 minutes before serving, heat a large sauce pan over medium heat and add the oil. Once shimmering, add the onions and cook three minutes.
Add the drained farro and cook for three more minutes, stirring often.
Add the kale and garlic and cook for another three minutes then add the wine.
Once the wine totally evaporates, add ½ cup of the stock and cook over medium heat until it gets absorbed, then continue adding ½ cup at a time and waiting until it gets absorbed before adding more.
About half way into the cooking process, add the mushrooms and stir into the mixture. Continue adding the stock a little at a time until the quart has been used. Take a piece of farro out and test for doneness. It should still be a bit chewy but not hard. The total cooking time should be about 30 minutes.
If the farro needs a few more minutes, and you have used all of the stock, just add a little water until the farro is tender.
Remove from heat and stir in butter and Parmesan cheese. Taste then add the salt and pepper, holding back salt if the vegetable stock was salty. Then serve.
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Please note that the farro must soak overnight.
The easiest way to remove the kale from the ribs is to start at the thick rib end, grasp the leaf on both sides and pull down, scraping your fingers against the rib as you pull down. Then chop and rinse the leaves.