I figured since my ratatouille was just a huge hit with the family, I would try another meatless meal. Since it is winter time, I thought a nice soup or stew would be a great idea. I would think that this recipe would make another great slow cooker recipe, but I have yet to make it in a slow cooker. I seem to break those a lot. Not kidding! I had gone through four before I stopped buying them. I used to use them all the time. It was important to me that my kids always had a hot, healthy, and great tasting meal, and at that time a slow cooker was the perfect thing. I guess what I am saying is, if you value your slow cooker, don’t let me near it. But I digress.
Now you may be asking yourself what in the world is farro. It is said that farro is the original ancestor of all other wheat grains. “The Mother of all Grains” if you will. During ancient Roman times this grain was used as the main source of nutrition for the Roman legions. And believe or not it was used as a form of currency. This old world heirloom grain is still highly regarded in Italy where is has been grown for generations by Tuscan farmers. If this grain is good enough to last generations it has to be good for me and my family.
This grain is packed with minerals and vitamins to help your body run at its best. According to Health Line, one-fourth cup (47 grams) of organic, whole grain emmer farro contains: Calories: 170, Carbs: 34 grams, Fat: 1 gram, Fiber: 5 grams, Protein: 6 grams, Vitamin B3 (niacin): 20% of the RDI, Magnesium: 15% of the RDI, Zinc: 15% of the RDI, Iron: 4% of the RDI. And with that, many antioxidants which can help protect your body against diseases, including some cancers, heart disease, diabetes, osteoporosis and neurodegenerative diseases. These are just some of the great benefits of adding farro into your diet.
Add this amazing grain with the vegetables, say in a soup, and you have a killer meal packed with minerals, vitamins, and tons of flavor! I call it a win-win.
- 2 Tbsp olive oil
- 2 carrots chopped
- 1 cup chopped yellow onion 1 small
- 2 celery chopped
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic
- 6 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
- 2 cups diced tomatoes with juices
- 1 cup farro rinsed
- 1 tsp basil
- 1 tsp oregano
- 1/4 cup slightly packed parsley sprigs
- 4 cups slightly packed spinach
- 1 15 oz can cannelloni beans, drained and rinsed
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1/2 cup freshly grated parmesan for serving (optional)
Heat oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Add carrots, onion and celery and sauté 3 minutes. Add garlic and sauté 30 seconds longer. Stir in vegetable broth, tomatoes, farro, oregano, basil and season with salt and pepper to taste.
Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Cover and reduce heat to low simmer for 20 minutes. Stir in spinach. Cook until both the farro and spinach are tender. Adding in cannelloni beans and heat throughly. Add additional vegetable broth or water maybe needed to help thin soup. The farro will absorb more liquid.