Mediterranean Grain Salad

Serves 4.

From "Come Hungry: Salads, Meals, and Sweets for People Who Live to Eat," by Melissa Ben-Ishay, co-founder of Baked By Melissa, who writes: "Grain salads offer endless opportunity. One night, I had leftover farro to use and only a few veggies in my fridge. I let the Mediterranean flavors I love inspire me and tossed the farro together with pantry staples (salty bites of olives, juicy artichoke hearts) and fresh spinach. The finely chopped raw veggies add just the right amount of crunch and flavor. My favorite part of this salad is that it really makes you feel good after you eat it, and it doesn't require intense planning. We now eat it on repeat on busy nights— I encourage you to do the same." (William Morrow, 2024)

For the salad:

• 1/4 tsp. fine sea salt

• 1/2 c. uncooked farro

• 6 Persian cucumbers, cut into confetti-size pieces

• 1 c. fresh spinach, chopped

• 1 red bell pepper, finely chopped

• 1 (15-oz.) can chickpeas, drained and rinsed

• 2 (6.5-oz.) jars artichoke hearts marinated in oil, chopped (I like the ones in glass jars because they are softer)

• 1/4 c. pitted Kalamata olives, chopped

• 1 bunch scallions, trimmed, light green and white parts cut into 1/4-in. slices

• 1/4 c. chopped fresh chives

For the dressing:

• 1/4 c. extra-virgin olive oil

• 1/4 c. red wine vinegar

• 1 clove garlic, grated with a microplane

• 1 tsp. dried oregano

• 2 tbsp. white miso paste

• Juice of 1 lemon (about 3 tbsp.)

• 2 tbsp. nutritional yeast

• 1 tsp. fine sea salt


Bring a medium pot with 1 1/2 cups water to a boil. Once boiling, season the water with the salt and add the farro. Stir to combine and lower the heat so the water is simmering. Cook the farro, uncovered, until tender, about 30 minutes. Drain any excess water and let cool.

While the farro cooks, combine the cucumbers, spinach, bell pepper, chickpeas, artichokes, olives, scallions and chives in a large bowl.

To prepare the dressing: Whisk together the olive oil, vinegar, garlic, oregano, miso, lemon juice, nutritional yeast and salt in a small bowl.

Add the cooled farro to the salad and stir to combine. Pour the dressing over the salad and mix to evenly coat. Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for 3 to 5 days.