Farm Fresh Recipe
Chef Michel Nischan is the owner of Westport, Connecticut’s Dressing Room: A Homegrown Restaurant, which he founded with actor and philanthropist Paul Newman in 2006. The son of farmers, Nischan has long been a leader in the movement to honor local, pure, simple and delicious cooking.
Special Offer: Become a monthly supporter of American Farmland Trust! For monthly gifts of $20 or more we will send you a hardcover signed copy of Chef Michel Nischan’s Sustainably Delicious, so you can enjoy sustainable dinners knowing that you helped keep farms open for business and supplying fresh food to your community!
Ancient Grains “Risotto” Style
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large yellow onion, diced
1/2 cup uncooked farro or spelt
2 cups vegetable stock, preferably homemade
1/2 large zucchini, diced
1/2 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
3/4 cup fresh sweet corn kernels
1 cup cooked heirloom beans (or canned organic)
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
4 squash blossoms
4 ounces ricotta
Freshly snipped herbs
1. In a large, deep sauté pan, heat half the olive oil over medium-high heat and when hot, cook the onions for 4 to 5 minutes or until softened but not browned. Add the farro and sauté for 2 to 3 minutes.
2. Pour the stock into the sauté pan and stir the farro and onions frequently for the next 40 to 45 minutes, at which time the farro should be tender and the stock evaporated. Add more stock if needed during cooking to keep the farro moist.
3. In another large sauté pan, heat the remaining olive oil and when hot, sauté the zucchini and corn kernels for 10 to 12 minutes or until the vegetables brown. Add the cooked the tomatoes and cook for about 1 minute to warm through. Add the farro and the cooked beans and toss to mix. Add the butter and stir until melted and the beans are hot. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
4. In a mixing bowl, whisk the ricotta to soften it. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Using a small spoon, gently stuff the squash blossoms with the cheese.
5. Spoon the farro onto each of 8 plates and garnish each with a stuffed squash blossom and freshly snipped herbs.
1/2 pint peeled and seeded butternut squash, 1/4-inch diced
1/2 pint hard apples such as russet or granny smith, seeded and 1/4-inch diced
3/4 cup cooked chestnuts, 1/4-inch diced
1/2 pint wilted greens such as kale, collards, swiss chard
1/2 pint parsnip, peeled and 1/4-inch diced
1/2 pint roasted red and yellow beets, peeled and 1/4-inch diced
1/2 pint cooked mushrooms
1/2 pint freshly shelled spring peas
1/2 pint asparagus, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch pieces