Thursday, November 10, 2011

Sweet Potato, Kale, and Farro Side, Thanksgiving Simplified

If you are looking for a new twist on the sticky-sweet marshmallow and sweet potato classic dish, here's an idea for a lighter, healthier (and make-ahead simple) side: Sweet Potato, Kale and Farro. It also makes a great Meatless Monday Main for fall, too, since farro, also known as emmer, offers some protein and fiber.

Sweet Potato, Kale and Farro Side
2 lbs. sweet potatoes (or butternut squash), peeled and diced 1/2 inch cubes
4 shallots, peeled, roughly chopped
2 tbs. sage leaves, chopped
2 tbs. olive oil
1 cup farro, rinsed and drained
2-1/4 cup chicken or vegetable stock
1 bunch kale, washed, stemmed, torn into small pieces
1/4 cup dried cranberries
Salt and pepper to taste
1/2 oz. Parmesan cheese, grated, for garnish

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

On a greased baking sheet, toss the sweet potato, shallots, sage and olive oil. Roast for 25 minutes, stirring every 5-10 minutes to prevent over-browning, or until the sweet potato cubes are fork tender and golden brown on edges.

While the sweet potato is cooking, place the rinsed farro and stock in a saucepan with a lid. Cover and bring to a boil, then reduce heat to a simmer. Simmer for about 20 minutes, or until the grains are al dente and the liquid absorbed.

To serve: Combine the sweet potato, cooked farro, and kale and toss gently to combine, seasoning to taste with salt and pepper. Garnish with the dried cranberries and Parmesan.

To make ahead for Thanksgiving:
Roast the sweet potatoes and prepare the farro as above. Let cool. Wash and tear the kale, then store in fridge in a plastic bag. Combine the cooled sweet potatoes and farro, and store in fridge.

The day of Thanksgiving, while the turkey is out of the oven and resting, cover the farro and sweet potato mixture with foil and reheat in the oven at 325 for 15-20 minutes. Then season, toss with the kale and garnish with the dried cranberries and Parmesan.

Serves 10

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