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ISO: farro

atomeyes Apr 10, 2012 02:54 PM

is it easy to find?
i've never encountered it.

  1. t
    Tatai Apr 12, 2012 03:10 PM

    I buy a brand of farro called Pantanella. The box is definitely confusing -- the product is called, in big lettering, "Farro in chicchi," but below it's marked "100% Spelt-Epeautre-Dinkel-El farro" (English, French, German and Spanish "translations").

    I'm able to understand the Italian instructions for Zuppa di farro on the back of the box and it calls for cooking the farro in the soup for about 30 minutes, which is about the amount of time I cook farro when making a pilaf.

    Both spelt and wheat berries take at least an hour to cook, which suggests to me that this brand of imported "farro" is, indeed, the real thing.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Tatai
      e
      embee Apr 12, 2012 08:00 PM

      I don't know anything for sure, and the label you describe compounds my confusion - farro, spelt, and dinkel as synonyms plus emmer (mentioned above). I recall being served "emmer" and "dinkel" as a child, but they didn't make much of an impression. We never had "spelt" or "wheat berries".

      What I remember as "emmer" was what some people called "farfel". Farfel (I suspect you agree) is a small pasta and not an ancient grain. Dinkel was different,but I don't recall specifics - I think it was served as a cereal.

      The timing is also not definitive. Differently processed wheat berries have different cooking times and farro seems to come in whole, pearled, and toasted forms. I did a bit of research before posting this - if anything, it left me more confused than before.

    2. linengirl Apr 12, 2012 02:53 PM

      Pasta Mia, basement level of St Lawrence market carries the real stuff (from Italy). And yes, it is common for vendors to refer to farro and spelt interchangeably. They are very similar but, I find, texturally, farro (which is pearled) is more delicate than spelt.

      1. e
        embee Apr 12, 2012 08:21 AM

        I think "farro" is being used as a (currently trendy) marketing term. There certainly isn't a specific type of grain universally called farro. Most Italian markets stock something labeled farro, which seems to be similar to spelt (if not the same). The word "spelt" has "health food" implications; "farro" doesn't, making it more appealing.

        You can use farro, spelt, and wheat berries of a similar type (e.g., whole, pearled/split, toasted) pretty much interchangeably in recipes.You can also use barley in farro recipes, though I wouldn't consider it interchangeable.

        3 Replies
        1. re: embee
          t
          Tatai Apr 12, 2012 02:46 PM

          Hate to disagree with you, embee, but true farro is emmer wheat, not spelt; it's a more ancient grain. I believe the "farro" imported from Italy is, indeed, the real stuff and not spelt. It also does not need to be cooked as long as wheat berries to soften up.

          1. re: Tatai
            Breadcrumbs Apr 12, 2012 04:46 PM

            +1

            http://www.farro.ca/

          2. re: embee
            haggisdragon Apr 12, 2012 09:16 PM

            Read the above article if you haven't already embee.

          3. g
            GirlRancher Apr 12, 2012 04:40 AM

            I found it at two small Italian shops on the Danforth -- Masellis (890) and Jerry's Supermarket (1398). Also Fiesta Farms.

            1. n
              naturalflavor Apr 11, 2012 07:24 PM

              I've seen it at some Costcos.

              4 Replies
              1. re: naturalflavor
                m
                millygirl Apr 12, 2012 03:09 AM

                You must have read the article in The Star the other day :)

                1. re: millygirl
                  n
                  naturalflavor Apr 12, 2012 06:35 PM

                  I haven't read the article. Was it any good?

                  The last time I bought farro from Costco was sometime last year.

                  1. re: naturalflavor
                    y
                    ylsf Apr 12, 2012 06:59 PM

                    I found it online as I was curious which article millygirl was referring to: http://www.thestar.com/living/food/ar...

                    1. re: ylsf
                      m
                      millygirl Apr 13, 2012 03:26 AM

                      Yup, that one. Thanks ylsf

              2. Breadcrumbs Apr 11, 2012 06:51 PM

                Rubes has it at the St Lawrence Mkt

                1. t
                  Tatai Apr 11, 2012 03:00 PM

                  I've bought it at Lady York and Fiesta Farms. Any Italian grocer/supermarket should carry it. Grande Cheese should have it, as well.

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