Lemony Farro with Tomatoes, Corn, Edamame and Cannellini Beans

by Carol Sacks on September 15, 2014

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We’re having a heat wave, which means dinners these days are mostly of the cold-supper variety: substantial salads augmented by creamy wedges of Fromager d’affinois cheese, a buttery, double-cream brie-like cheese, or cups of ice-cold, garlicky gazpacho.

This Chicken Salad with Shelling Beans and Roasted Tomatoes from Los Angeles-based chef Jessica Koslow, is a new favorite. I’ve made a few variations over the last week and each is a hit with its punch of smoky paprika and herby, caramelized cherry tomatoes. (I used seared tuna for the salad below.)

Craving a grainy main, I put together this Lemony Farro with Tomatoes, Corn, Edamame and Cannellini Beans one night last week. It’s an easy-to-prepare salad that bridges summer and fall — refreshing and filling without taxing the cook.

Substitutions are encouraged. Add your favorite beans — and canned is fine here. Just be sure to rinse your canned legumes for a minute or two under cold water before draining and tossing them in the bowl.

Diced colorful bell peppers or cucumbers would add color and crunch. And, change up your herbs. I used my favorites — basil and mint — but thyme or even a touch of rosemary would bring an autumnal feel to the dish. A load of chopped parsley will push it into tabbouleh territory.

Once our heat breaks, I’ll take a cue from Jessica Koslow, and roast end-of-season, cherry tomatoes and toss them — and their sweet juices — into the bowl. Adding slices of leftover roast chicken or steak would make for a protein-packed main dish, too.

I hope your fall season is off to a productive start. Have a good week ahead!

5.0 from 4 reviews
Lemony Farro with Tomatoes, Corn, Edamame and Cannellini Beans
Recipe type: entree
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 3-4
An easy-to-make lemony, herby grain salad that bridges summer and fall.
  • 1 cup farro, rinsed in cold water and drained
  • 4 cups water
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½ cup cannellini beans, rinsed in cold water and drained
  • ½ cup edadame (I use frozen)
  • corn sliced off of one ear of corn (about ½ cup of corn; frozen works)
  • ½ cup cherry tomatoes, rinsed and sliced in half
  • ¼ cup finely diced red onion
  • 1 Tablespoon minced basil leaves
  • 1 Tablespoon minced mint leaves
  • zest of ½ lemon (about ½ teaspoon)
  • lemon juice from ½ lemon (add more as you like)
  • 3 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • freshly-ground pepper to taste (I like a pinch, but add more if you like a kick of heat)
  1. Fill a medium-sized saucepan with the water and bring it to a rapid boil. Rinse the farro under cold water and drain well. Once the water is boiling add ½ teaspoon salt and the farro. Cover the pot with a top, but leave it slightly askew so that the steam can escape. Turn the heat down to simmer and cook the farro until just barely tender, about 25 minutes. (I usually check it beginning at 20 minutes, because I like it slightly chewy).
  2. While the farro is cooking, place the rinsed cannellini beans, the edamame (if they’re frozen they will defrost quickly), the fresh or frozen corn and the tomatoes in a large bowl. Add the red onions, the herbs and the lemon zest. Cover the bowl with a damp paper towel until the farro is done cooking.
  3. Once the farro is cooked, drain it well and place the farro in the bowl on top of the vegetables, etc. Squeeze the lemon juice over the farro, add the olive oil and the remaining ½ teaspoon of salt and freshly-grated pepper. Stir the mixture well with a rubber spatula. Taste and add more lemon juice, salt and/or pepper if you like. Serve immediately.


{ 12 comments… read them below or add one }

Jamie September 15, 2014 at 5:42 am

A fantastic salad! I love farro – love the nutty flavor and the chewiness, too – and I love mixes of beans and corn. With tomatoes. We do eat similar salads but I love your addition of lemon which I never think to do. Perfect all year round, for us!


Carol Sacks September 15, 2014 at 5:50 am

Hi Jamie, thank you so much for checking in and your kind words! I’m a big farro fan, too. Hope you have a great week!


Gail September 15, 2014 at 6:29 am

You know what I really love about your posts? You use the photos from the farmers’ market for your ingredients! Not to mention the mouth-watering recipes!


Carol Sacks September 15, 2014 at 6:32 am

Gail, you know what I really love about you? You’re terrific — thank you for the kind words and encouragement. You’re the best!! xo


Lizthechef September 15, 2014 at 8:53 am

We are hot and cranky – well, I am – here in San Diego. I’m going to play copy-cat and try a version of your salad for our supper, using grilled scallops.


Carol Sacks September 15, 2014 at 9:24 am

Hi Liz, I’m with you. The temps are going up again today and I’m so done with it:( I love the idea of adding scallops to the salad. Please let me know how it goes and thank you so much for checking in! xo


Winifred Lender September 15, 2014 at 4:35 pm

This salad looks so fresh and inviting. Perfect for a hot evening or any time at all. Thank you for this wonderful inspiration!


Carol Sacks September 15, 2014 at 5:14 pm

Hi Winifred, thank you so much for the kind words. Hope you’re staying cool!


Deb September 15, 2014 at 5:10 pm

Send some of that late summer heat north! If it gets to 75 we are ecstatic! If that’s not possible I’ll take a second helping of the scrumptious Lemony Farro with Tomatoes, Corn-Edamame and Cannellini beans!


Carol Sacks September 15, 2014 at 5:15 pm

Hi Deb, I’m sending our heat your way and a care-package of salad. Thank you so much and take care!!


Beth (OMG! Yummy) September 15, 2014 at 7:30 pm

This is inspiring me for that bag of farro I just bought and a bit of leftover corn from tonights Ottolenghi eggplant on made-from-corn-kernels-polenta. We are not quite as hot up north so I’ve been roasting away in the oven and just a bit outside.

Another great salad Carol.


Carol Sacks September 15, 2014 at 7:38 pm

Hi Beth, so happy to hear you’re having a cooler time of it and roasting your veggies. Your dinner sounds amazing! Thanks so much for the kind words, though I’m looking forward to hanging up the salad tongs for a week or two when the heat breaks:)


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