Eating seasonally is so important and while it’s not possible for all of us all the time, when it works it’s so worth it. I’m not Alice Waters or Barbara Kingsolver but I admire them both and I am fortunate enough to have pretty amazing local produce nearby almost all year. Blackberry and blueberry season is short in Virginia so I try to utilize them as much as possible when they’re here. The small local berries are so juicy and sweet, I can’t get enough of them.
It’s really hot and humid right now so I’m all about eating a cold premade salad at dinner. Kale is hearty and stands up well to refrigeration and I love the toothsome pop that farro adds to salad. This is one of the healthier dishes on my blog but it has enormous amounts of flavor.
What you need:
2 cups chopped kale (stems removed, will turn into about 1-1.5 cups after being rinsed and spun)
1/2 cup of farro cooked according to package directions
2 tbsp good quality olive oil
fresh ground salt and pepper
juice and zest of one lemon
4 oz crumbled feta (honestly, buy a fresh block and then dice it up…tastes so much better than the pre-crumbled covered in potato starch stuff)
1 cup of fresh blackberries
1 cup of fresh blueberries
1/3 cup fresh chopped mint leaves
3 tbsp chopped sweet and spicy pecans (Trader Joe’s makes a great version, but any type of sweet and salty nut will do)
Begin by rinsing your kale under hot water in a colander for a minute or two, shake it out and wring it dry with your hands. This helps to break the kale down a bit to remove some of the toughness. Chop the kale and add to your salad bowl. Meanwhile, cook your farro on the stove top according to the package directions and rinse with cold water, then drain. Add farro to your salad bowl and mix in your olive oil, salt and pepper (a few good cranks on the grinder), lemon juice, and lemon zest. Next come the blackberries, I like to smush a few of the really juicy ones into the salad to incorporate a bit of juice into the dressing. Now add your blueberries, feta, mint, and pecans. Refrigerate until serving time. Enjoy!