Saturday, June 20, 2015


I have been thinking of the ancient grain farro recently and wanting to cook up a batch for different uses.  Using my rice cooker, which can be used for other things besides rice, I cooked two cups of farro which made about four cups of cooked grain.  Farro has a wonderful nutty taste to it and I have written about farro in a previous post einkorn berry salad.

Besides adding farro to salads, I will use it over the next few days as an alternate to rice and as a cereal for breakfast.  I think farro would be a great in the morning instead of oatmeal as a cold muesli with berries and yogurt.

Instead of making one big bowl of salad for supper to serve two people, I like to make individual salad bowls.  The ingredients listed here are for one individual bowl of salad and you can just multiply the amounts if making for a number of people.   I used grapefruit flavour balsamic vinegar which has a nice taste in a vegetable salad.  You can add other vegetables to the salad than those listed in the recipe.

Cooked farro in a bowl

Vegetables piled over the farro.

Dressing has been added and all of the ingredients are combined.

1/2 cup cooked farro
1 stalk of celery, chopped
1/4 coloured pepper, chopped
small chunk of cucumber, coarsely diced
1/2 cooked beet, coarsely diced
1/4 avocado, chopped


1 tbsp olive oil
1/2 tbsp balsamic vinegar, flavoured
1/2 tsp Dijon mustard
1/2 tsp maple or agave syrup

Using a medium size soup/salad bowl, add the farro to the bowl.  Separate the kernels with a fork.  Add the vegetables.  Mix the dressing and pour over the salad. Combine well and serve.

Saturday, June 6, 2015


With rhubarb growing in the garden, I like to look for different recipes.  This recipe is like a pineapple upside down cake.  I used a springform pan instead of a regular pan or a pie plate.  I thought it would be easier to invert it after it was baked.  The problem with using a springform pan is that the rhubarb will leak out of the seams on the bottom of the pan and make a mess in the oven.  After I realized that the rhubarb was leaking out of the pan I lined a cookie sheet with parchment paper, placed the springform pan on the sheet and continued baking the cake.  Another change I made was using splenda instead of sugar. 

The cake turned out to be simply delicious and the DH said that I outdid myself with this cake.

Rhubarb, jam and sugar mixture spread on bottom of pan.

Cake batter spread over the rhubarb.
Springform sides taken off of the cake pan.  Ready to invert the cake into a plate.

Cake inverted so rhubarb is on top.

Sampling is starting. 

3 cups sliced fresh or frozen rhubarb
1 tbsp unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/4 cup strawberry or raspberry jam
1 cup sugar
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp salt
2/3 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
2 eggs
1/4 tsp almond extract
1/4 tsp vanilla, or 1/2 tsp vanilla
1/3 cup milk

Slice the rhubarb into small pieces. Place in a medium-size bowl.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Generously coat the bottom and side of a 9-inch cake pan or a 10-inch deep-dish pie plate with 1 tbsp butter.

Place jam in a small bowl and microwave for 30 seconds, until melted.  Pour the jam over rhubarb and stir to evenly coat.  Evenly sprinkle 1/4 cup sugar over bottom of cake pan or pie plate. Spoon rhubarb mixture over the sugar and evenly spread it out.

In a medium-size bowl, using a fork, stir flour with baking powder, cinnamon and salt.  In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat 2/3 cup butter until creamy, then beat in the remaining 3/4 cup sugar until evenly mixed, occasionally scraping down side of bowl. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Then beat in almond and vanilla extracts.

Gradually beat in half the flour mixture, then half of milk. Repeat additions and mix until blended.  Batter will be thick.  Spoon evenly over rhubarb to completely cover, then smooth the top as best you can.

Bake for 35 minutes and check to see if it is done.  It may need 10 or so more minutes.  If the top is a deep golden brown, cover loosely with a piece of foil. When done, remove from oven and let stand 5 minutes. Then run a knife around edge of cake. Invert onto a large cake plate. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Other Options:

You can use other fruit beside rhubarb to make this cake.  I used frozen blueberries to make this cake a second time and it was delicious.  I used the same proportions of fruit, three cups.  It is best to let the cake cool down before you flip it over as it take times for the berries to solidify.  Instead of using a springform pan, I used a 9 inch round cake pan.

Adapted from