Adapted from Mario Batali
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 stalks celery, sliced
1 large leek, white and pale green parts only, sliced
1 cup pearled farro
1 tablespoon tomato paste
2 quarts vegetable broth
1 15-oz can cannellini beans, drained, rinsed
2 carrots, diced
1 1/2 cups frozen peas, thawed
1 small zucchini, diced
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Chopped fresh parsley for garnish
Shaved Parmesan for garnish
In a large soup pot, heat the oil. Add the celery and leek and cook over medium high heat, until softened, about 5 minutes. Add the farro and tomato paste and cook, stirring, until the grains are coated and shiny, about 30 seconds. Add 1 quart of the broth and the beans and bring to a boil. Lower heat and simmer for 30 minutes. Add the carrots and remaining 1 quart broth. Cover and cook over low heat until the carrots are tender, 30 minutes. Add the peas and zucchini, cover and cook until tender, about 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper and serve sprinkled with parsley and Parmesan.
Farro is an ancient grain and a distant elder cousin of modern wheat, farro most likely developed out of wild emmer and is very closely related to spelt It is sometimes referred to as Emmer. It has a high nutritional value.