Roasting sweet potato and apples with a little sherry vinegar and tossing them with farro, dried cherries and roasted cashews makes for a hearty cold-weather dish.
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1/4 cup plus 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 small fennel bulb, finely chopped
1 small onion, finely chopped
5 garlic cloves, minced
4 cups chicken stock or low-sodium broth
2 cups farro
3/4 pound sweet potato (1 large), scrubbed and cut into 1 1/2-inch pieces
1/4 cup sherry vinegar
2 Granny Smith apples—peeled, cored and cut into 1 1/2-inch pieces
3/4 cup dried cherries, soaked in warm water for 10 minutes and drained
1 cup roasted cashews, coarsely chopped
3/4 cup coarsely chopped parsley
Shaved pecorino cheese, for serving
How to Make It
Heat 1/4 cup of the olive oil in a large saucepan. Add the fennel, onion, garlic and a generous pinch of salt. Cook over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until the fennel is softened, about 8 minutes. Add the stock and farro and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat to moderate and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the farro is tender and the stock is absorbed, 25 to 30 minutes.
Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 425°. On a large rimmed baking sheet, toss the sweet potato with the remaining 3 tablespoons of olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Drizzle with the sherry vinegar and roast for about 15 minutes, until just starting to soften. Add the apples and toss to coat. Roast for about 20 minutes longer, until the sweet potato and apples are tender but not falling apart. Let cool slightly.
In a large bowl, toss the farro mixture with the dried cherries, cashews, parsley and the roasted sweet potato and apples. Season with salt and pepper. Transfer to plates, top with shaved pecorino cheese and serve.
The farro salad can be refrigerated overnight. Stir in the cashews and parsley just before serving at room temperature.
Light-bodied, fragrant Italian red.
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