- 1 1/2 cups of cubed winter squash
- 8 oz. mushrooms, cleaned, sliced if large, whole if small
- 2 medium shallots or the white part of 2 medium leeks, thinly sliced
- 1 clove of garlic smashed and minced fine
- ¼ teaspoon thyme leaves
- Pinch each of sea salt and pepper
- 2 oz. Marsala or sweet Vermouth
- Extra virgin olive oil or
- A L' Olivier hazelnut oil to taste
- 2 tablespoons pepitas
- ¼ cup toasted hazelnuts, chopped
- ½ teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
- INGREDIENTS for SPICE BLEND
- ½ teaspoon whole coriander
- ½ teaspoon whole cumin
- ¼ teaspoon cracked black peppercorns (seeds of paradise would be brilliant)!
- ¼ teaspoon sea salt
- 1/8 teaspoon ground allspice
- 1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Time: 1 1/2 hours
Yield: 6-8 SERVINGS
- MAKE the FARRO.
- Boil farro in 3 quarts of lightly salted water for 20- 30 minutes, strain. It should be al dente. Cook it a few minutes longer if you prefer a softer texture.
- MAKE the SPICE BLEND.
- Heat a small pan over medium heat. When it is hot, add the cumin, coriander, seeds of paradise, or black peppercorns. Turn the heat off.
- Shake the spices in the pan until they are fragrant. Grind them in a mortar and pestle with a pinch of sea salt.
- Stir in the allspice, cinnamon and pimenton.
- MAKE the SQUASH.
- Steam or boil it till just soft, 10–15 minutes. Drain and put it in a bowl. Toss it in a bit of olive oil, dust with the spice blend.
- MAKE the MUSHROOMS.
- Sauté mushrooms in olive oil with the shallot, garlic and a pinch of thyme and a crack of pepper. Don't brown the mushrooms. Deglaze them with a shot of Marsala or Vermouth if the spirit moves you.
- ASSEMBLE the SALAD.
- Gently combine the squash, mushrooms and farro in a shallow bowl with the oil. Stir in the pepitas and hazelnuts. Taste for salt and pepper. Sprinkle with thyme leaves.