Eating seasonally and locally can be overwhelming for many people, especially for New Yorkers who live in the “concrete jungle.” When you’re in the city, it is easy to be out of touch with what is actually fresh and in season.
I always make a conscious effort to seek locally-grown food, both because it’s better for my health and because it’s better for the environment. I suggest making small and sustainable changes that support a healthy lifestyle and don’t feel overwhelming.
I am really excited to learn about Walmart’s commitment to source seasonal, organic produce from local farms for their stores. I recently went to the James Beard House where Walmart hosted its kickoff for their Rediscovering America program and learned more about their dedication to providing stores with produce with that just-picked flavor. It was also great to hear how important it is for them to provide accessibility to fresh, local and organic produce for their customers. I grew up shopping at Walmart so this is wonderful to hear.
I was really inspired by all the groceries I picked up at the event at the James Beard House. There was an array of peppers, tomatoes, avocado, herbs and so much more….
The food at the event included seven passed canapes featuring Walmart produce that were created by James Beard Award-winning Chef JJ. His work was just a preview of the food that will be created all over the country in the next few months. As part of Rediscovering America, Walmart tasked nine celebrated chefs across America to create a dish using only Walmart fresh local and organic produce for their restaurants.
At the end of the night, I felt inspired, and ended up going home with an armful of fresh vegetables to create my own variation of a Walmart-only dish. Looking at all the colorful produce reminded me of my mother’s famous summer farro salad. It is an amazing combination of fresh herbs and seasonal vegetables.
So, what better way to use all those vegetables than to recreate this salad? My favorite part is all the fresh herbs, which offer a nice variety of flavor and texture. Farro is an amazing grain to add into your diet. It has a lot more fiber than traditional grains and is a complex carbohydrate, making it a lot more nutritious than any white grain. In general, complex carbohydrates are more nutritious than processed white grains/breads because the processing strips away the essential nutrients. Always opt for whole grains when possible!
This salad will not disappoint. It’s loaded with flavor and makes for great left overs all week long!
Farro Salad Recipe
2 cups cooked Farro 2 cups arugula chopped 1 cups cherry tomatoes half 1 cup fresh corn- must be fresh 3 scallions sliced ¼ cup red onion diced ½ cup fresh basil chopped ½ cup fresh parsley chopped ¼ cup fresh mint chopped Zest from one lemon Dressing:
¼ cup olive oil ¼ cup fresh lemon juice Salt to taste
In a large bowl place cooked farro, tomatoes, corn, sliced scallions, red onion, basil, parsley, mint and lemon zest and toss together In a small bowl combine dressing ingredients and whisk together Add dressing to the farro mixture then add chopped arugula. Note: If you are making in advance add arugula and dressing right before serving.