Farro & Eggplant Stacks with Summer Pesto & Salsa Fresca

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I know, I know; this recipe has a lot of layers to it. But think of it as four meals in one—farro, grilled eggplant, summer pesto and salsa fresca. Make a little extra of each one and you’ll have a week’s worth of meals . . . along with an impressive dish for dinner.

Farro & Eggplant Stacks with Summer Pesto & Salsa Fresca


Yield: Serves 4

Farro & Eggplant Stacks with Summer Pesto & Salsa Fresca


  1. 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  2. 1 cup minced onion
  3. 3 cloves garlic, minced
  4. 1 cup diced tomato
  5. 3/4 teaspoon salt, divided
  6. 3/4 cup farro
  7. 1 cup water
  8. 1 pound eggplant, sliced crosswise 1/2-inch slices
  9. 1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese
  10. Salsa Fresca
  11. 2 tomatoes, chopped
  12. 1/2 cup white onion, chopped
  13. 1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
  14. 2 tablespoons lime juice
  15. 1/4 teaspoon salt
  16. 2 cloves garlic, minced
  17. 1 jalapeno, minced
  18. Mix together all ingredients and let sit for 10 minutes before serving.
  19. Makes 1-1/2 to 2 cups
  20. Summer Pesto
  21. 1 packed cup fresh basil, and other summer herbs
  22. 1 tablespoon pine nuts, toasted
  23. 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  24. 2 cloves garlic
  25. 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  26. Sea salt, to taste
  27. In a food processor, pulse together basil through garlic. With the processor running, slowly drizzle in olive oil. Season to taste with salt.
  28. Makes ½ cup


Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Saute onion for 3 minutes, until translucent. Add garlic, and saute another 2 minutes. Add tomato to pan with 1/2 the salt and bring to a simmer. Add farro to the pan and toss to coat with onion/tomato mixture. Pour in water and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover ,and simmer for 20 minutes. Remove from heat and let stand 10 minutes.

Heat grill to medium-high. Brush eggplant slices with remaining 1 tablespoon oil and sprinkle with remaining salt. Grill for 3-5 minutes per side, until browned and tender.

To assemble, lay an eggplant slice on a plate and spread with roughly 1 teaspoon pesto. Spread 1/4 cup of farro over the top and repeat once more. Top second layer with a final slice of eggplant and top with salsa fresca and crumbled feta cheese.


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