Archive | Grains

Farro Risotto with Roasted Mushrooms and Dark Ale


If you don’t want to hear me whine about the weather again, you might want to stop reading now.


The weather in Maryland is so wonky sometimes, especially on the shoulder seasons.  After a perfectly beautiful sunny weekend (hello, 67 degrees!), today is 42, raining, and just bone-chilling…a perfect day to hunker down under a soft blanket, cuddle with a furry friend, watch Game of Thrones on the DVR and re-warm a bowl of this leftover farro risotto.

This recipe is not a risotto shortcut-you still have to do all the required stirring to arrive at the coveted creamy consistency.  I recommend that you turn on some good music and pour yourself a glass of  libation before getting busy with it.

Farro Risotto with Roasted Mushrooms and Dark Ale


  • 8 ounces mushrooms (I used button because that's what I had, but this would be great with cremini or baby portabello)
  • 2 cups farro
  • 6 cups low sodium chicken stock
  • 6 Tbsp unsalted butter, divided
  • 1/2 medium white onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 cup light cream
  • 3 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 1/4 cup brown ale (I used Newcastle), divided
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper

Add farro to a large bowl. Cover with warm water and soak for 30-60 minutes.

Meanwhile, roast the mushrooms:

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil or parchment paper. Add mushrooms in a single layer. Drizzle with olive oil and toss to be sure they're coated. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.

Roast 25-30 minutes, stirring mushrooms halfway through cooking time.

Remove and set aside.

Heat chicken stock in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a low simmer and reduce heat to low. Keep a ladle handy.

In a large pot, heat 3 Tbsp olive oil. Add onion and cook until soft. Add garlic and cook another 1-2 minutes.

Add 3 Tbsp butter and farro. Cook the farro in the butter, turning with a spoon in order to coat it, about 2-3 minutes. Don't let it turn darker.

Add the brown ale and cook until almost completely dry, about 6-7 minutes.

Add 1/2 cup of the chicken stock and cook, stirring continuously, until the liquid is almost completely absorbed.

Continue this cycle of adding the stock, 1/2 cup at a time, and stirring until absorbed until all the stock is gone. This process should take about 30-35 minutes. Don't walk away or the farro will burn.

Taste for chewiness, adding additional water to cook longer if it's not done.

When the farro is cooked, turn heat to low and stir in the cream, remaining 3 Tbsp butter, and 1/4 cup brown ale.

Remove from heat and stir in roasted mushrooms.

Serve with grated pecorino or parmesan cheese.

mushrooms roasted mushrooms farro


Banana Bread Waffles

banana bread waffle

If you believe everything you read or hear, National Pancake month is February, and IHOP’s National Pancake Day is March 4th (not during National Pancake Month?  Whatever IHOP…).  I love pancakes just as much as the next commercial establishment, but these waffles deserve a day all their own.  Instead of using those ripening bananas in a smoothie or bread, make a batch of these babies and freeze them*.  You’ll thank me later. Continue Reading →


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