Fall Farro Salad with Fennel + Pear

I'm not really into grain salads but this one has so many foods I do like.  Like fennel - I just don't use Fennel enough.  Eat this on it's own or serve it tossed with the kale.  

Hot chile sesame oil and tamari soy sauce, together, have become my new favorite condiment.  They make everything taste so perfect.  So, of course I drizzles both over this and it did not disappoint.  Give it a try!

Serves 4.

Fall Farro Salad with Fennel + Pear

2/3 cups uncooked farro

1/2 a fennel bulb, cored, thinly sliced

1 small red onion, halved, thinly sliced

1 pear, cored, chopped

2 tablespoons sunflower seeds

1/2 cup feta cheese

olive oil

s + p  (easy on the S - there's a bit of salt from the cheese and seeds already)

lemon juice

1 bunch kale leaves, chopped (optional)

1 clove garlic, minced (optional)

Combine farro with about 4 cups water. Bring to a boil and cook until farro is tender but not falling apart, about 20 minutes. Drain.  

Toss farro with fennel, onion, pear, sunflower seeds, feta and a drizzle of olive oil.  Season with salt, pepper and lemon juice to taste. 

If using kale, steam kale in 1/4 cup water in a covered pan until tender, about 2 minutes.  Drain, return pan to stove, push kale to side of pan. On empty side, cook garlic in dash of oil, about 1 minute.  Stir together with kale.  Season with a squeeze of lemon and a small pinch salt. Toss with farro salad.

 

Pear Crumble Bars

What the hell are these things called?  Is crumble bar right?  Or is it pie bar or crumb bar?  I really don't know.  I'm saying, with some uncertainty, crumble bars.  They are made with a sweet tart dough layered with fruit and more of the dough crumbled on top.  Don't make them!  Seriously, I feel the same way I feel about french fries as I do crumble bars: I wish I'd never had them so I wouldn't have to be plagued by cravings for their unhealthy deliciousness.  Curse you french fries and crumble bars, curse you. 

On a different note, feel free to use apples instead of pears, if you like. 

Makes one 8" x 8" pan of bars.

Pear Crumble Bars

1/2 cup sugar

1 1/2 cup all purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

4 oz cold butter, cubed

1 egg, beaten

2 pears, cored, sliced

juice of 1/2 a lemon

1 tablespoon sugar

1 tablespoon cornstarch

1/4 teaspoon cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon ground ginger

Heat oven to 375 degrees.  Line an 8" x 8" baking pan with a square of parchment paper on the bottom.  Set aside.

Whisk together sugar, flour, baking powder and salt.  Add butter cubes, working with a pastry cutter or your hands or a stand mixer with a paddle attachment until mixture resembles a course sand.  Add beaten egg.  Work until dough comes together.  

Press 2/3 of dough into bottom of pan.  Try to keep it even.  Toss pear slices with lemon juice, sugar, cornstarch, cinnamon and ginger.  Top crust with fruit.  Spread it into an at least somewhat even layer.  Crumble remaining dough on top of fruit.  Lightly press down into fruit.  Bake about 50 minutes until top is golden brown.  Cool before cutting.  

Them ask someone to hide them so you don't eat them all.