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Warm Mushroom and Ancient Grain Salad

Recently, this salad has been getting me through the final stretch of what seems to be a never ending winter. This salad is less like a salad and more like a giant hug in a bowl. Its hearty and comforting which makes it feel like a hug in a bowl. Not to mention, this salad is so easy to make and can be prepared ahead of time! The mushrooms are so full of flavor. They are cooked in a white wine and balsamic dressing that pairs so well with the grains. The grains can be prepared ahead of time and you can use any combination of your favorite hearty grains (my personal favorites are barley, farro, and quinoa). The grains are subtly flavored with parmesan and a hint of lemon zest that ties the whole dish together.


1 cup uncooked grains (any combination of farro and barley)

2 oz. arugula (about 2 tightly packed cups)8 oz. mushrooms

1/4 cup white wine

1/4 cup balsamic vinegar

1 tablespoons soy sauce

2 garlic cloves (minced)

4 tablespoons olive oil

3-4 rosemary leaves

1 shallot/half an onion (minced)

Zest and juice of a lemon

1/4 cup shredded parmesan cheese (plus more for garnish)

Pistachios or pumpkin seeds (for garnish)

Salt (to taste)

Pepper (to taste)


  1. Start by cooking your grains (see notes on cooking instructions).

  2. Once your grains are done cooking, set aside to let them cool. While your grains cook and cool, cook the mushrooms. You can cook your grains and store them in the fridge for up to 2 days in advance.

  3. Slice your mushrooms into thick pieces or quarter them. Chop your shallot/onion and garlic as well. In a small bowl, combine your white wine, balsamic vinegar, and soy sauce.

  4. Heat up a large pan with about half of your olive oil. Let it get super hot, you should be able to see it smoking. Then add in your mushrooms and salt them gently mix them to coat them in the oil and then do not touch them for 2-3 minutes. Then, add some pepper, mix, and let the mushrooms cook for another 1-2 minutes

  5. Add in your shallots/onions and garlic. Mix and let them cook for 2-3 minutes. Add in about 3/4 of your white wine marinade. Let everything cook out. It should take about 3-4 minutes. You want to make sure the mushrooms soak up all of the flavor.

  6. Add in your chopped rosemary and the juice of half a lemon. Cook for a minute or two more. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

  7. Remove the mushrooms from your pan and add in the grains. Pour in the remainder of the marinade and olive oil in. Cook for about 5 minutes. You want all of the alcohol to evaporate. Make sure your grains are warm. Mix in the zest from half a lemon, the parmesan cheese, arugula, and season with salt and pepper.

  8. Place the grains and arugula in your serving plate/bowl and spoon over the warm mushroom mixture. Pour in all of the juices left at the bottom of your pan as well (that will add extra flavor and is basically the salad dressing). Drizzle a tablespoon or two of extra virgin olive oil on top and top with more cheese before serving warm.


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