The Notebooks
by Josée Fiset

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Wild mushroom and sage farrotto

Farro is an ancient grain that shares a strong resemblance to barley. Along with einkorn wheat, it is the oldest grain to be domesticated by man. Farro bread was in fact discovered in the Egyptian tombs dating back to around 2050 BC. Risotto is an excellent way of becoming better acquainted with this hulled grain (it doesn’t lose its hull when harvested). We should point out that this dish does not wait around to be served. If someone must wait, it will be the guest.

Preparation : 20 minutes

Baking : 1 hour

Maceration : 8 to 10 hours



1. The night before, rinse the farro well in a strainer. Transfer to a bowl and cover with 3 cups (750 ml) of water. In another bowl, soak the mushrooms in 4 cups (1 litre) of water. Let soak the entire night.

2. Using a strainer, rinse and drain the farro. Set aside. Thoroughly drain the mushrooms over a pot to recover the soaking liquid. Set the mushrooms aside in a bowl. Add the stock to the pot with the soaking liquid and bring to a boil. Keep warm.

3. In a large pot on medium heat, heat the onions in half of the oil until they sweat, for around 2 minutes. Add the farro and continue cooking, stirring for 5 to 7 minutes. Add the salt and pepper, to taste.

4. Incorporate a ladle of hot stock into the farro mixture. Stir continuously until the stock is absorbed. Repeat until the stock is used up or until the farro is soft, approximately 45 minutes. As needed, add more stock or boiling water.

5. Meanwhile, in a large pan, sauté the mushrooms in the remaining oil on medium heat for 5 to 8 minutes. Add salt and pepper.

6. Incorporate 2/3 of the mushrooms, the Parmesan and sage into the cooked farro. Season to taste. Garnish with the remaining mushrooms and serve. Drizzle with oil, if desired, and season with pepper.


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