Farro is high-fiber whole grain wheat that looks similar to barley. It retains a notable amount of chew as it gets cooked. It is considered an ancient grain, defined as a grain largely unchanged over the last hundreds of years. Ancient grains are more nutritious than refined products. A lot of them thrive with lower levels of pesticides, irrigation, and fertilizers. Farro is considered as one of the more exotic ancient grains, together with sorghum and quinoa. It offers amazing benefits that go along with its reputation.
Farro is often sold with the bran removed, so it needs less cooking time than italian farro or whole farro which retains some of the bran. As with other grains, farro is easy to cook on the stove, though it is more convenient to cook it in a rice cooker or a pressure cooker.
The majority of producers recommend soaking the whole farro overnight to shorten the cooking time. But, you don’t have to worry about this if you use pearled and semi-pearled farro. Typically, farro is cooked in a 1:2.5 or 1:3 ratio, or 2 1/ to cups of water or broth for every cup of dry farro. When soaking farro overnight, it is expected to be al dente in around 10-15 minutes. Unsoaked farro must be checked after 25-30 minutes. If you don’t’ want to soak the farro overnight, you can shorten the cooking time by cracking it in a spice girder or food processor so the heart outer shell will break open.
Nutritional Benefits of Farro
Aside from being delicious, farro offers many nutritional benefits:
- It has high fiber content. A good fiber diet is important for proper digestion and reduced cholesterol levels. A cup of uncooked farro contains 12 grams of fiber. Thus, you will need either a third or halfway to get your daily fiber requirement, depending on your gender.
- It is protein-packed. Eating foods packed with protein such as farro help you stay healthy, lose weight, and gain strength. A cup of farro offers 28 grams of protein, which is equivalent to a 3-ounce sirloin steak.
- It has lots of antioxidants. Farro can be a good source of antioxidants necessary to protect the body from harmful molecules called free radicals. These molecules can cause cell damage that can lead to cancers, stroke, diabetes, and heart disease.
- It is low calorie and low fat. You can get fat-free verities of farro. When compared to other grains, it is the low-fat, low-calorie winner.