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Corn and Tomato Farro Salad with Fresh Mozzarella

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At the peak of summer’s bounty, it can be tricky to figure out what else to do with all of the tomatoes and sweet corn.

If you’ve had as many BLTs or tomato sandwiches and as much corn on the cob as you want, how do you honor the pint of sungold tomatoes on the counter and the extra ear of corn in the crisper drawer?

That’s where this corn and tomato farro salad comes in.

Pint of sungold tomatoes, ear of corn partially shucked, basil leaves on a table

Farro salads are workhorse meals for me.

They walk the line between sturdy and light, they keep well, and they work with all sorts of flavors. (Like this sugar snap pea farro bowl with buttermilk dressing; or this roasted delicata squash, kale, and leeks with farro; or this asparagus and spring onion farro salad.)

I can’t get enough of farro’s nubbly, chewy texture and it’s nutty flavor. Farro is an ancient wheat variety that Romans have been eating for centuries.

Tomato peels in a strainer set over a bowl

This corn and tomato farro salad honors that Italian heritage, bringing in tomatoes, fresh mozzarella, and basil.

I like to use sungold cherry tomatoes here, which are orange, petite, and intensely sweet. Any cherry or grape tomatoes on the sweeter side would work though.

The dressing is a kicky blend of shallots, sherry vinegar, the juice of some of the sungold tomatoes, a pinch of smoked paprika, and some olive oil.

Juicing a handful of the tomatoes into the dressing swathes the whole salad with that wonderful peak-season tomato flavor.

Sungold tomatoes sliced in half on a cutting board

For flavoring the farro, I steal a technique from bruschetta or crostini where a raw clove of garlic is swiped across toasted bread.

Here, I add a smashed clove of garlic to the mixing bowl where I add the freshly cooked farro and toss it around, then discard the clove of garlic.

The farro takes on a wonderful garlic fragrance, but it doesn’t get overwhelmed by raw garlic.

Corn and Tomato Farro Salad with Fresh Mozzarella

Then the warm farro gets tossed with the dressing, which it greedily soaks up.

Then the fresh sweet corn kernels sliced right off the cob get tossed in, along with the halved sungold tomatoes.

And then torn bits of fresh mozzarella get mixed in to add some richness and heft to the dish.

Then the whole thing gets showered with a flurry of basil leaves.

And that’s when it’s time to dig in.

Corn and tomato farro salad with fresh mozzarella and basil overhead closeup
Yield: 4 servings

Corn and Tomato Farro Salad

Corn and Tomato Farro Salad with Fresh Mozzarella

This corn and tomato farro salad is a great way to enjoy sweet corn and peak-season tomatoes.

I like to use sungold tomatoes, which are incredibly sweet with a nice acidity for this, but any good cherry or grape tomatoes will work well here.

Several small tomatoes get juiced and strained into the dressing to help make the tomato flavor shine.

The fresh mozzarella adds some lovely creamy richness to the dish, but you could swap it out for shaved parmesan or leave the cheese out altogether to make the dish vegan.

This keeps well for a few days. I like it warm or at room temperature, but it's not bad straight out of the fridge either.

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes

Ingredients

For the shallot-tomato vinaigrette

  • 2 teaspoons minced shallots
  • 1 tablespoon sherry vinegar
  • 5-6 sungold tomatoes, halved
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/8 teaspoon smoked paprika

For the farro tomato salad

  • 1 cup farro
  • 1 pint sungold tomatoes (or other cherry tomatoes), halved and lightly salted
  • 1 ear of sweet corn, kernels sliced off the cob
  • 1 clove garlic, peeled and smashed
  • 4 ounces fresh mozzarella
  • a handful of basil
  • salt and pepper, to taste

Instructions

  1. Bring a medium saucepan 2/3 full of water to a boil.
  2. Meanwhile, make the dressing. Add the minced shallots to a mixing bowl, cover with sherry vinegar and a pinch of salt, and let sit for 15 minutes to lightly pickle.
  3. Take 5-6 of the sungold tomatoes and juice them over the shallot and vinegar mixture, pressing the cut side over a strainer to remove all of the liquid. Discard the skins and seeds. Stir in the olive oil and smoked paprika.
  4. When the water comes to a boil, add a pinch of salt along with the farro. Cook until al dente according to package instructions (usually around 25 minutes).
  5. Add the smashed garlic clove to a large mixing bowl. When the farro is finished cooking, drain through a fine mesh strainer and immediately add to the mixing bowl with the garlic. Toss the garlic around through the farro with a silicone spatula until the farro is fragrant with garlic. Discard the garlic clove.
  6. Add the dressing, tomatoes, and corn kernels to the farro and toss.
  7. Tear the fresh mozzarella into bite-sized pieces and add to the farro and toss again.
  8. Taste and season with more salt (and pepper if desired). Roughly chop the basil and sprinkle over the salad.
  9. Serve.

Notes

Keeps well in the refrigerator for 3-4 days.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

4

Serving Size:

g

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 316Total Fat: 17gSaturated Fat: 5gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 11gCholesterol: 18mgSodium: 234mgCarbohydrates: 34gFiber: 7gSugar: 10gProtein: 12g

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Emily Liao

Thursday 23rd of July 2020

This is the perfect summer salad! Love all the ingredients, including the farro.

Irina

Thursday 23rd of July 2020

OMG! My mouth started watering before I got to a picture of the ready salad. All the step by step photos makes you want to try this salad ASAP. I will be making it tonight.

Anita

Thursday 23rd of July 2020

Both corns and tomatoes are in season right now, so this is a great time to make this delicious salad. :)

Haley

Thursday 23rd of July 2020

Wow! So flavorful. It tastes even better after "marinating" for a couple hours.

Emily

Thursday 23rd of July 2020

This corn tomato farro salad looks so delicious! In my opinion farro is one of the under appreciated grains!