Farro with Blister Tomato and Pesto – a delightful Caprese-inspired salad with a twist! This rustic dish combines nutty farro with sweet and tangy blistered tomatoes and roasted red onions, all brought together by basil pesto. Topped with creamy Navy or Great Northern beans, it's a satisfying and hearty meal that will leave you craving for more. It's a great Italian-inspired summer salad.
Farro is an ancient grain with a nutty and slightly chewy texture that has been enjoyed for centuries. It hails from the wheat family and is highly nutritious, boasting a rich source of fiber, protein, vitamins, and minerals.
Its versatility makes it an excellent addition to various dishes, and in this recipe, it serves as the hearty base that complements the other ingredients perfectly. When cooked, farro develops a delightfully earthy flavor that pairs wonderfully with the fresh and tangy components of the dish.
You have two choices here, and both are winners. You can either whip up your own homemade pesto or get creative with the ingredients to make it just how you like it. Or, if you're short on time (we totally get it!), grab a jar of your favorite store-bought pesto.
The roasted vegetables are the star of this dish, bringing a burst of flavors and textures. Thinly sliced small red onions caramelize beautifully when roasted, offering a subtle sweetness and a hint of gentle pungency. Cherry tomatoes, when roasted, become tender and juicy, their natural sugars intensified, and their flavors are concentrated.
Drizzled with olive oil, sprinkled with red pepper flakes for a touch of spice, and seasoned with salt and pepper, these vegetables add an outrageous taste to the dish.
Lemon juice and lemon zest are the secret ingredients freshly squeezed lemon juice provides a bright and tangy note that cuts through the richness of the pesto and complements the roasted vegetables. The lemon zest adds a burst of citrusy aroma with is really nice.
You know what makes this Farro with Blistered Tomatoes and Pesto dish even more magical? Those marvelous white beans! If you are bean-obsessed like me, you're in for a treat.
When those tender Navy beans join the party, the whole dish comes alive with its creamy and satisfying texture. They play so well with the roasted vegetables, pesto, and zesty lemon, adding a delightful contrast to every bite.
But that's not all – these little powerhouses bring a serious punch of protein, fiber, and nutrients to the table, making this meal even more wholesome and nourishing. If you don't have navy beans you could use great northern beans or cannellini beans. Learn more about the difference between navy beans and great northern beans.
Making the Farro: Start by rinsing 1 cup of Farro under cold water to remove any debris. In a saucepan, combine the rinsed farro with 3 cups of water (or vegetable broth) and add a pinch of salt for seasoning.
Bring the liquid to a boil over medium-high heat, then reduce the heat to low, cover the saucepan with a lid, and let the farro simmer for about 20-25 minutes or until it becomes tender yet still slightly chewy. Once cooked, drain any excess liquid and set the farro aside.
Roasting the Vegetables: Preheat your oven to 400°F (200°C). On a baking sheet, toss 1 small red onion (thinly sliced) and 1 pint of cherry tomatoes with 2 tablespoons of olive oil, ensuring they are evenly coated. For those who enjoy a bit of spice, sprinkle a pinch of red pepper flakes over the vegetables and season with salt and pepper to taste.
Spread the vegetables out in a single layer on the baking sheet, giving them room to roast properly. Roast the vegetables in the preheated oven for about 15-20 minutes or until the tomatoes have softened and slightly blistered, and the onions have caramelized around the edges.
Assembling the Dish: In a large mixing bowl, combine the cooked farro with the roasted vegetables. Add the pesto to the bowl, starting with a few spoonfuls and adjusting to taste. Give everything a good mix until the farro and vegetables are nicely coated with the pesto.
Time to brighten things up – squeeze some fresh lemon juice over the dish, infusing it with a zesty tanginess. Finally, take a moment to zest up your creation with grated lemon zest.
Whether you're craving a warm and comforting meal or a refreshing dish on a hot day, this Farro with Blistered Tomatoes and Pesto offers the best of both worlds – enjoy it warm or cold! Here are some delightful serving suggestions to enhance your dining experience:
- Warm or Cold: Indulge in the cozy goodness of this dish by serving it warm, right after you've prepared it. On the other hand, this dish featuring summer tomatoes and fresh basil from the garden is great served cold or at room temperature. This dish is incredibly versatile, so choose the serving style that suits your mood and the weather!
- Top with Chopped Fresh Basil: For a burst of freshness and a pop of color, don't forget to sprinkle your Farro with Blistered Tomatoes with some chopped fresh basil. This herbaceous addition adds a delightful aroma and complements the dish perfectly, enhancing both its visual appeal and taste.
- What to Serve It With: This wholesome and flavorful dish is incredibly versatile and pairs wonderfully with a variety of proteins. To make it a complete and satisfying meal, consider serving it alongside flaky white fish, such as cod or tilapia, grilled chicken, or succulent shrimp.
- Mozzarella: Add some creamy and fresh mozzarella to the mix! Simply cut the mozzarella into bite-sized pieces and toss them in with the roasted vegetables and farro. As they mingle with the pesto and tomatoes the complete the caprese salad flavors.
- Serve with Greens: Looking to add some extra freshness and a delightful crunch to your meal? Serve your Farro with Blistered Tomatoes and Pesto with a bed of fresh spinach or peppery arugula.
- Up the protein: Want to up the protein game and make this dish even heartier? Try a poached egg or some grilled shrimp! A perfectly poached egg with its creamy yolk will add a velvety richness to the farro and veggies, taking this meal to a whole new level of indulgence. Alternatively, grilled shrimp brings a burst of succulent seafood flavor that pairs wonderfully with the nutty farro and zesty pesto. Whichever you choose, this addition will make your Farro with Blistered Tomatoes and Pesto an impressive and complete feast.
Looking got more salad Veggie Forward Salads:
- Bright and fresh salads: Cucumber Beet Salad, Edamame Bean Salad or Zesty Quinoa Salad.
- Harty Salads: Lentil Tabbouleh Salad Recipe, Lentils, and Kale Salad, and Broccoli with Anchovy Salad Dressing.
- With Beans: White Bean Salad and Black beans and corn salad.
If you’ve tried this Farro with Blister Tomato and Pesto recipe or any other recipe on BalancingBowls, please let me know how it turned out in the comments below! You can also follow me on Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest to see more tasty meals and anything else I’m up to.
Farro with Blister Tomato and Pesto
- 1 ½ of grape tomatoes
- 1 red onion sliced into wedges
- 2 teaspoon kosher salt
- ½ fresh ground black pepper
- ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 2-3 tablespoons olive oil
- ⅔ cups pesto
- 1 cup of dry ferro about 3 cups cooked
- 1 can of Navy beans drained and rinsed
- fresh basil for garnish
- Rinse 1 cup of farro under cold water.
- In a large covered pot of well-salted water add farro.
- Bring to a medium boil, then reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer for 20-25 minutes until tender yet slightly chewy. Drain any excess liquid.
- Preheat oven to 400°F (200°C).
- Toss red onion wedges and cherry tomatoes with a little olive oil on a sheet pan
- Add a pinch of red pepper flakes, salt, and pepper.
- Roast for 15-20 minutes until the tomatoes blister and onions caramelize.
Assemble the Dish:
- In a large serving bowl, combine cooked farro and roasted vegetables.
- Add the desired amount of pesto, starting with a few spoonfuls and adjusting to taste. Mix well.
- Squeeze fresh lemon juice over the dish and sprinkle with grated lemon zest.
- Optional: Top with fresh basil.