Risotto-Style Farro with Caramelized Onions, Squash, and Kale

This weekend I went from being completely anti-Christmas (I did not listen to a single Christmas song until Saturday) to a little too holiday-ready given the fact that it’s not even Thanksgiving yet. I blame Michael’s, where I bought some holiday baking supplies…

I just started a Holiday Baking board on Pinterest and I plan on adding a LOT more to it.

Michael’s just so happens to share a parking lot with BevMo, so of course we had to peruse the beer section. We ended up with a few things, including Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout.

This is so flavorful it makes Guinness seem like water by comparison(I’m sorry Guinness, I love you, but you can’t really compete here…)
We drank this while watching the last Harry Potter Movie (yeah, we’re probably the last two people on Earth to see it. I just didn’t want the series to end!)

Sunday morning I was supposed to run a 9 mile race but there was thunder and the house was way too cozy. I finally peeled myself off the couch at about 11:30, when the threat of getting struck by lightning seemed to have passed. It was still cold and rainy but the run was good.

10 miles at 8:48 min/mile. It was my first double digit run since the Boston Marathon! I definitely still have a lot of work to do on both speed and endurance, but it feels good to be putting in some decent mileage again. I ended this week with 28 miles, a total I’m really happy with.

This was supposed to be a quick and easy dinner: Quinoa, squash, red onion, and kale (basically the flavors from this pizza in a healthier form). But then I realized I didn’t have red onions. And I wanted farro instead of quinoa, and I had some white wine, and I wanted to caramelize some onions. Fortunately I happened upon this recipe and it was fabulous.
(adapted from

11 Responses to “Risotto-Style Farro with Caramelized Onions, Squash, and Kale”

  1. 1 Jen November 21, 2011 at 5:16 am

    cate – congrats on your first postpartum double digit run! that beer sounds delicious!

  2. 2 Beth November 21, 2011 at 8:54 am

    Nice 10 miler! and that dish looks wonderful. Does the farro stay chewy at all, or does it get creamy like arborio rice in a regular risotto?

  3. 3 Cate November 21, 2011 at 9:31 am

    Beth – It definitely stays a little chewier than normal risotto.

  4. 4 janet @ the taste space November 21, 2011 at 9:59 am

    This looks great! Do you think I could I sub wheat berries for the farro? No shame in early planning for Christmas, I say! 🙂

  5. 5 Julie @BananasForBourbon November 21, 2011 at 10:37 am

    Yum! I love using alternative grains in risotto! Though I can only ever find spelt instead of farro. Ah well.

    I am quite the stout drinker if you ever want suggestions! I used to be all Guinness until I really got into beers. Old Rasputin is definitely a good one. Have you tried Great Divide’s Yeti? Especially the Oak Aged. Oh man. It’s one of my favs.

  6. 6 Cate November 21, 2011 at 12:13 pm

    Janet – I think wheat berries would be great! I’m not sure if you’d have to adjust the amount of liquid/cooking time though.

    Julie – I’ve never tried that, but it sounds awesome! I’ll look for it!

  7. 7 Kate November 21, 2011 at 4:38 pm

    1) You can’t start holiday-ing before Thanksgiving!
    2) You and Mike (and I guess you can bring Ellie) should head up to Mendocino/Fort Bragg to visit North Coast Brewery. The Old Rasputin is good, but they have a bunch of other really great beers too. We actually have a bottle of their Old Stock Ale in our fridge right now.

    • 8 Cate November 21, 2011 at 4:42 pm

      Kate – I have NEVER gotten started on holiday stuff this early before! But Mike was all about it so I went with it…
      We definitely plan on making a trip up to Mendocino one of these days…for the beautiful coast AND for the beer!

  8. 9 Debi November 21, 2011 at 7:16 pm

    Hi! Okay, after drooling over this post, which I always do btw, I had to remember to give you this! A Liebster Award! (stunned silence I’m sure). Please come check out my nomination list. I hope you accept and share the love. Thanks!

  9. 10 Aron November 22, 2011 at 10:16 am

    I LOVE RISOTTO!!!! I need to try this 🙂

  10. 11 Krysten November 29, 2011 at 10:33 am

    Made this on Saturday night…it was AWESOME! Great recipe! Btw, a friend of ours has gotten us hooked on Abita beer (from New Orleans)…suuuuper good. Also, D is a big fan of Delirium Belgian beer. We got their holiday beer this last weekend and it was really good as well.

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