“Mindy Fox, cookbook author and editor of American magazine La Cucina Italiana, means business in the kitchen and she's got the chops to prove it! After years of cooking professionally in restaurant kitchens, Mindy turned to publishing, gracing the general public with her flavourful and often Mediterranean-inflected cooking through titles like A Bird in the Oven and Then Some and Olives and Oranges. Her latest cookbook, Salads: Beyond the Bowl, explores precisely that, shaking up the paradigm of orthodox greens and infusing a fresh, delicious point of view. She shares a recipe from the book here.” Hana and Christine, Pantry Confidential
- 250 g punnet cherry or grape tomatoes, halved
- fine sea salt and finely ground black pepper, to season
- 1 large corn cob, husked
- 225 g green beans, trimmed
- 125 ml (½ cup) very good extra-virgin olive oil
- 1¼ cups farro
- 1 large garlic clove
- 60 ml (¼ cup) red wine vinegar
- 1 small cucumber, peeled, sliced into half moons
- 1 cup packed basil leaves, large leaves torn
- 4 radishes, halved, very thinly sliced
- 3 spring onions (scallions), white and green part thinly sliced
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
In a large serving bowl, toss together the tomatoes and salt. Set aside.
Bring a large saucepan of salted water to the boil. Cook the corn and the green beans together in the boiling water; after 3 minutes, using tongs, transfer the corn to a chopping board. Continue to cook the green beans for 1–2 minutes or until crisp-tender. Using tongs, transfer the beans to a colander to drain, then pat dry and place in a bowl. Reserve the cooking water in the pan. Add 1 tablespoon oil to the beans and toss to combine.
Cook the farro in the reserved cooking water over high heat, stirring occasionally, for 18–20 minutes or until tender but still firm to the bite. Drain the farro, then spread it on a baking tray set over a wire rack to cool for 5–10 minutes.
Meanwhile, heat a chargrill pan over medium-high heat. Grill the green beans for 4–5 minutes or until golden on both sides. Transfer to a plate and season with a generous pinch of salt and pepper. Let the beans cool, then cut into 2.5 cm lengths. Cut the corn kernels off the cob.
Slice the garlic clove, mound with ½ teaspoon salt, then using both the blade and the flat side of a chef's knife, chop and scrape the mixture into a paste. Combine the vinegar and remaining 100 ml oil in a bowl. Add the garlic paste and ¼ teaspoon pepper, and vigorously whisk the dressing to combine.
Add the farro, dressing, green beans, corn, cucumber, basil, radishes, spring onions, ¼ tsp salt and ¾ tsp pepper to the tomatoes. Toss the salad to combine well.