This Pumpkin Baked Farro is hearty enough to eat as a main dish, and festive enough to be a side for the holiday table. It is a kind of baked risotto, or rather, ‘farrotto’. It’s a delicious way to eat pumpkin, and easy too, particularly if you’re feeling tired. There’s no stirring here. Once you’ve popped it into the oven and set the timer, your job is done.
1. Pre-heat the oven to 400 degrees. Generously oil an 8- x 8- x2-inch baking dish.
2. In a large saucepan over medium-high heat, combine the onion, sage, and salt and cook until the onion is translucent, about 5 to 8 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for another 3 minutes.
3. Stir in the pumpkin puree with ½ cup of water. Cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
4. Add the farro or freekah and 2 cups of water along with a pinch of salt. Bring to a boil, then simmer for 15 minutes.
5. Transfer half of the grain mixture into the prepared baking pan, then dot with pieces of goat cheese. Top with the remaining grain and dot with the goat cheese. Bake for 40 minutes in the oven. Let cool slightly then serve.
Ann's Tips and Tricks
Freekeh is whole smoked green wheat, and very tasty indeed. It can be used instead of rice, farro, or wheat berries. It originated in the Middle East, and used to be quite hard to find until aficionados started making it in places like Oregon. You should be able to find it in many organic markets.
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