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Turkey Farro Salad with Sweet Potato, Cherry Tomato, Baby Arugula, Barberries, and Walnuts in a Lemon Vinaigrette


Submitted by Anna Mann

This recipe is a delicious entree salad that would be perfect to pack for a workday lunch or served cold for Shabbos lunch. There are a couple of different components for the salad that have to be made, but they aren’t difficult and can be made in advance. The brining of the turkey really makes a huge difference-the turkey will be moist and very flavorful, unlike the usual bland roasted turkey breast.


Prepare the Sweet Potatoes


Poke a couple of holes in each potato, and bake two large sweet potatoes on a pan lined with foil in a preheated oven heated to 400 degrees Fahrenheit for one hour. Let cool,


Peel then dice in a one inch cube.

Prepare the Brined Roasted Turkey Breast


Place salt, sugar, peppercorns, in a large pot with four cups of water. Heat over medium heat bring to a boil and then let simmer about 10-15 minutes.


When the salt and sugar have dissolved, remove from the heat and add eight cups cold water. Let brine cool to room temperature.


Submerge the turkey breast in the brine for about two hours in the refrigerator. Note-most brines have you submerge the meat overnight in the brining liquid but with kosher meat this is overkill as kosher meat is already salted. A couple of hours is all you need.  Take out turkey from brine and dry it off well.  


Place in preheated 425 degrees Fahrenheit oven for 25-28 minutes. Remove when a meat thermometer states the temperature is between 155-160 degrees Fahrenheit. The turkey will continue to cook a bit out of the oven. Let cool for 15-20 minutes before cutting in bite size pieces. Please note that you will have about half of the turkey leftover–please feel free to use it for some delicious turkey sandwiches.

Prepare the Vinaigrette


Whisk together all ingredients for vinaigrette. Set aside.

Prepare the Farro

Yields 2 cups.


Put two tablespoons extra virgin olive oil in a large frying pan and heat over medium heat.


Add crushed garlic and chile flakes and cook until garlic turns brown about one to two minutes. Add farro and cook for three to five minutes stirring continuously – you will know when it’s done when it smells fragrant.


Add water, bay leaf and kosher salt and bring to a boil, then simmer until farro is tender between 15-30 minutes. Taste it; it should be somewhat soft with a nutty bite. Drain farro in a wire mesh strainer.


I toast the farro before I cook it because it has so much more flavor, but feel free to skip toasting the farro and cook according to package directions if you are in a hurry.


Salad Assembly


While farro is warm (if it is cold, microwave it for about 90 seconds to warm it up) add vinaigrette to it and let it sit for 15 minutes. The idea is that the farro should absorb the warm vinaigrette.


Then add in: diced turkey, sweet potatoes, barberries, cherry tomatoes, toasted walnuts and two cups baby arugula.


Toss together well in a bowl and serve on a platter.