I admit that name doesn’t really make it sounds very good, however the pepperiness comes from a few different sources – the arugula (a delicate peppery green), a black pepper viniagrette (that one is obvious), and some tart acidity from pickled red onions. This recipe I’ve taken pretty exactly from a Pinch of Yum with only major additions of how to cook farro. I also added some micro greens. 🙂
Peppery Grape Salad
For the Pickled Red Onions
- ¾ cup red wine vinegar
- ⅓ cup champagne vinegar
- ⅓ cup water
- ⅓ cup sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 red onions, very thinly sliced (I only had room for 1 onion and it was more than enough…)
For the Black Pepper Vinaigrette
- ⅓ cup red wine vinegar
- ⅔ cup olive oil
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 clove garlic
For the Salad
- 2½ cups red grapes, halved
- 2 cups cooked farro or a gluten free alternative like quinoa (directions below)
- 3 cups arugula
- ¼ cup fresh basil leaves, cut into ribbons
- ½ cup chopped cashews
- 1 cup chopped micro greens/sprouts (I used pea shoots, but beet sprouts would also add a nice splash of color)
- Pickled Red Onions: Place the vinegars, water, sugar, and salt in a jar with a tight fitting – shake lid until well combined. Add the sliced red onions. Refrigerate at least 24 hours or longer for best flavor.
- Dressing: Place the vinegar, olive oil, sugar, pepper, and salt in a jar. Crush the garlic clove and just drop it in the jar in one or two pieces – the idea is that you’ll still get some fresh garlic flavor infused into the dressing without the little pieces of raw garlic in the dressing when you serve it. 🙂 Shake to combine. You can make this ahead.
- Assembly: Toss the grapes and farro with about half of the dressing. Add the arugula, basil, cashews, and a handful (however much you want) of the pickled red onions. Toss to combine. Add additional dressing if it needs any more – for me, the original amount of dressing was just about right.
To make 2 cups of cooked farro you’ll need 3 cups of water and 1 cup dry farro.
- Use 1 part farro to 3 parts liquid.
- As it cooks, the mixture foams, so 1 cup farro needs at least a 4- to 5-quart pan.
- Simmer farro, covered, until tender to bite, about 25 minutes.
- There will be extra water, it will not soak up all of the liquid like many other cooked grains.
- If you want a creamy texture, let stand off the heat for about 10 minutes.
- If cooking farro ahead of time, drain while still hot; save liquid to add when reheating or ― since the grain makes a good salad ― to use as part of a dressing. Let farro cool, then cover and chill up to 2 days. Reheat in a microwave oven or use cold.