(Note: this post was originally published on May 27, 2021. The date above reflects migration to the new platform.)
Sometimes simple salads are the best salads since they really allow a single flavor to shine through. That's undoubtedly the case here! Hearty cauliflower and farro are the perfect vehicle for celebrating lemon in all its glory.
This salad is the companion recipe to my Caramelized Lemon Turmeric Sauce, which I posted a few days ago. Although that sauce (without a doubt my favorite creation of the entire spring!) is wonderful on just about anything, it particularly excels in this simple salad. The relatively mild flavors of the cauliflower and farro allow the lemon to be the star of the show.
Please refer back to the sauce post for detailed instructions, tips, and ideas. It's a bit non-traditional and involves caramelizing lemon peel, which is what makes it so delightfully surprising and unique. Make a double batch, use it for this salad, and then put it on every single grilled veggie and nourish bowl you make throughout the rest of the spring and summer!
After you've made the sauce, the rest of this is really simple. Just roast some cauli, boil some farro, toss it with the sauce, and add a few garnishes. That's it! Yet the combination is pure magic.
This salad is great because you have a lot of options with it, including the ability to make all of the components in advance. Flexible AND easy? Sign me up!
If you want to change up the flavors a bit, this would be great with a chiffonade of fresh basil across the top. You could add more protein (the farro already has some) by topping it with crispy roasted chick peas or grilled tofu. Any veggies that love lemon, like grilled asparagus or broccolini, would also be great additions. Just keep in mind that lemon is the dominant flavor, so try to stick with ingredients that go well with lemon.
This salad can be served hot, room temperature, or cold, which gives it a lot of versatility. It would work great warm for a light dinner any time of year, or keep it cold for a summer day. Make all the pieces in advance and serve it at a summer BBQ. It would even pack great for a picnic since all of these ingredients travel well.
To make this salad in advance, you can prep the sauce numerous days ahead and the cauliflower and farro as far as a day ahead. When you're ready to serve, just plate it and garnish it. Thanks to its make-ahead friendly nature, this salad is wonderful for meal prep or for entertaining. As long as you have everything ready to go, it will only take five minutes to bring this from fridge to table.
Here's what you'll need for this recipe, as well as some thoughts, tips, and possible substitutions. If you make any substitutions, I'd love to hear about it in the comments section below.
This is one of those salads that can be anything you ask of it. Is it a side dish? A main course? A picnic or potluck dish? Cold? Room temperature? Hot? I've already made this so many times this spring because it's just so darn versatile. Each time I make it, it's a little bit different.
Are you a lemon lover? I certainly hope so, because this salad is bursting with vibrant, tart lemon flavor. I can't wait for you to try this sauce, I really can't get enough of it!
It makes me so happy to hear from you and see your creations! Please leave a comment below and let me know what you think about this recipe. If you post a photo on Instagram, hashtag #TheRogueBrusselSprout and tag me (@TheRogueBrusselSprout) in the post text so that I'm sure to see it.
Full of chewy farro, perfectly-roasted cauliflower, crunchy almonds, and a zippy lemon sauce, this symphony of flavors and textures makes for a great side dish or main course.