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kalefarrosoup.blog  300x230 Kale, Butternut Squash and Farro Soup: May Healthy Soup Recipe

I couldn’t resist buying a fresh bunch of kale when I happened upon a farmer’s market yesterday while  meeting a friend near downtown Sacramento.

Yesterday  I also happened upon TasteFood  blog by Lynda Balslev who is  an award-winning food writer and recipe developer based in the San Francisco Bay area. 

Her recipe for Kale and Farro soup caught my eye.

So I’m using her recipe for my Healthy May Soup Recipe.

I’ve never heard of farro before and was delighted to find out it’s a high protein grain, rich in fiber and iron.  Now that I’ve tasted it and cooked with it, I believe it could become a staple in my plant and whole food based-food-eating -kitchen.  I found the texture and flavor similar to a small whole grain pasta noodle.

Thanks to a reader of my Facebook I Choose Hope page, I was told I could find farro at Trader Joe’s.

Sure enough it was there  packaged precooked, which turned out to be quite convenient, since farro needs to be soaked like a bean prior to cooking. 

This precooked farro went straight from bag to soup pot.

farrocollageblog1 300x300 Kale, Butternut Squash and Farro Soup: May Healthy Soup Recipe

I made this healthy, minestrone-like soup in under an hour.

Ingredients

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 medium yellow onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 cup farro (or 1/2  cup precooked farro)
6 cups chicken stock, plus additional stock as necessary
2 cups butternut squash, cut in 1/2 inch cubes
1  (15-ounce) can Italian plum tomatoes with juice
1  (2-inch) chunk of rind of Parmigiano cheese
1 bay leaf
2 teaspoons dried thyme or 1 tablespoon fresh thyme
1-2 teaspoons salt, to taste
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 to 3 cups coarsely chopped green kale
Grated Parmigiano cheese

Directions

Heat oil in a soup pot over medium heat. Add onion and saute until softened, 2 to 3 minutes. Add garlic and saute until fragrant, 1 minute. Add farro and stir to coat. Add chicken stock, squash, tomatoes, cheese chunk, bay leaf, thyme, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil, breaking up tomatoes with a wooden spoon. Reduce heat, partially cover and simmer until squash is tender and farro is cooked, about 30 minutes. (Add more stock to desired consistency if soup is too thick.) Taste for seasoning. Stir in kale leaves; simmer until kale brightens in color and just wilts, about one minute. Discard Parmigiano rind. Ladle into bowls and grate cheese over the soup. Serve immediately.

Notes:  If using precooked farro, do not use the entire 1 cup that this recipe calls for.  I only used 1/2 cup and I still needed to add another 2 cups chicken broth.  Also,when I make this again, I will add sliced zucchini after I’ve sauteed the onion and garlic.  Lastly, I will cook the kale at the end several minutes longer, as the big leafy kale I used needed more time to cook and get tender.  

In Service & Hope,

Karen

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