FARRO WITH CUCUMBERS (for six)
For the salad:
8 ounces (1-1/2 cups) farro, preferably perlato, or semipearled, or wheat berries, picked over and rinsed
1 pound cucumbers, cut into ¼ inch dice
1 medium red onion, cut into ¼ inch dice
1 red finger chile or serrano chile, cut into tiny dice
1/3 cup packed fresh basil leaves, thinly sliced (chiffonade)
Malden or other flaky sea salt
For the dressing:
¼ cup red wine vinegar
¼ cup sparkling water
½ cup extra virgin olive oil
1.Combine the farrow and water to cover by 2 inches in a large saucepan and bring to a simmer, skimming off the foam. Reduce the heat to a bare simmer and cook until the farrow is just tender, about 25 minutes if using pearled farro, about 1-1/2 hours if using whole grain farro (or wheat berries).
2. Drain the farro and transfer to a large bowl. Add the cucumber, onion, chile and basil, mixing well.
3. Whisk the vinegar, water and olive oil together in s small bowl. Add the vinaigrette to the salad and toss well. Season with salt and serve, or let stand at room temperature for 1 hour to bring out the flavors. (The farro can be refrigerated, covered, for up to three days; bring to room temperature before serving.)
from Mario Batali, Molto Gusto
NOTE: To move this Mediterranean salad further towards Greece, add pitted, halved Kalamata olives, 8 ounces feta in ½ inch dice and some halved cherry tomatoes.