Farro and Butternut Squash
Make it Ahead Barefoot Contessa Recipe
In the winter I love making dishes like this baked Farro and Butternut Squash that come together in one delicious pot. In New York we are having a bit of a cold front come through and when this happens I crave hearty/filling dishes like this that are warm and tasty.
Farro is a grain with a nutty flavor that is worth trying if you have not given it a try yet. I love it! I usually find it in cold salads in the summer mixed with vegetables but it is really good warm in a bake as well. In this recipe you use butternut squash and apple smoked bacon to give the farro some big flavors.
This is a good dish to make a head for a dinner party or perhaps for your family during the week. Everything can be assembled and then placed in the oven when you are ready to bake and serve it. Baked Farro and Butternut Squash was a big hit and there wasn’t many leftovers! That’s usually a good sign.
Baked Farro and Butternut Squash
What you need:
- 6 thick-cut slices applewood-smoked bacon
- 2 tablespoons good olive oil
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
- 1 1/2 cups chopped yellow onion (1 large)
- 2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme leaves
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1 1/2 cups pearled farro
- 3 cups good chicken stock
- 5 cups (3/4-to-1-inch-diced) peeled butternut squash
- 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
What to do:
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees and place the bacon on a baking sheet for 20-30 minutes in the oven, until browned. (it wont be crisp) Dice the bacon and set aside.
- Meanwhile in a large dutch oven (a pot that can go into the oven) heat oil and butter over medium heat. Add onion and cook until tender about 6-8 minutes. Add thyme, salt and pepper cook for 1 minute.
- Add the farro and chicken stock and bring to a simmer. Place the squash on top of the farro mixture, cover, and bake for 3o minutes while the bacon is cooking. Cook until farro and squash are tender. If it seems dry add a little more chicken stock.
- Sprinkle the bacon and cheese on top and bake for 15-20 more minutes until the squash and farro is tender, liquid has evaporated, and cheese is melted. Serve in the same pot.
If you are making this ahead do up to step 4, add the bacon and cheese, but do not bake it until you are ready to serve (up to 2 days).