Happy 2021, and happy winter! It is definitely the height of the cold (at least here in the northeast!) and I’m actually not hating it!
I know soup is a popular winter food, but I honestly was not a big soup fan until my adult life. I could be misremembering (mom, you can correct me here) but I associate soup with meals I ate when I was sick as a kid and at some point I labeled soup as “sick person food”. This was SUCH an unfortunate thing because there are so many good soups!
Needless to say, I’ve come around and am now whipping up soup of my own. This one includes plenty of veggies and my favorite grain, farro.
What’s the big deal about farro?
Let me tell ya! Farro is an ancient grain that’s been around so long it apparently has been found in Egyptian tombs! It is a type of wheat, so you’ll have to swap it out for any Celiac friends, but if you tolerate wheat then you absolutely want to give this grain a try. The name farro refers to 3 different types of grains. Emmer is the farro most often found in the US.
So why should you care about this old wheat grain? Not only does it have rich history, it’s likely lasted so long because it is also packed with nutrition!
Here’s the nutrition breakdown…
Like many other whole grains, farro is a great source of fiber. Most Americans don’t get enough fiber in their diet, and we know that having enough can prevent some cancers and of course keep you regular!
Farro also contains Magnesium, a mineral that can help lower blood pressure and improve mood along with many other benefits. Zinc is another mineral found in farro which is an especially hot one now! Given the current coronavirus pandemic, many people are looking to strengthen their immune systems, and zinc is a supplement commonly taken to help fight or prevent the common cold. Is it proven to prevent COVID? No, but if you’re lacking in zinc, it could make your cold a little shorter.
Whether you’re looking for a vitamin filled food or a delicious chewy texture and nutty flavor that spices things up from your typical rice, farro is definitely the grain to try! Comment below if you have had it!
Vegetable Farro Soup
- 3 Tbsp olive oil enough to coat the bottom of your pot, more as needed
- 1 medium yellow or white onion, chopped or 1/2 of a large onion
- 3 large carrots, diced
- 4 stalks celery, diced
- 3 large garlic cloves, pressed or minced
- 1 tsp dried thyme
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp oregano
- 4 medium white potatoes, cubed
- 2 red bell peppers, diced
- 1 28 ounce can italian seasoned crushed tomatoes, blended can also use 2 standard 14.5 ounce cans
- 3 cups vegetable broth
- 2 cups water
- 2 cups farro
- 1 can red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 cup fresh spinach
- Place a large pot on the stove over medium low heat and coat the bottom with olive oil.
- Add chopped onion, carrot, celery, and garlic to the pot and stir as needed until vegetables are tender.
- Add salt, thyme, and oregano and stir for another minute.
- Add in potatoes, bell pepper, tomatoes, broth, and water and increase the heat to bring the contents of the pot to a boil.
- Once the soup is boiling, add in the farro, reduce to a simmer, cover the pot and allow to cook for 45 minutes or until vegetables and farro are tender.
- Add in beans and spinach and allow to cook, covered, for another 5 minutes until spinach is wilted.