Spring has sprung.
It’s one of my fav things about my birthday, being born on the first day of spring. Or the second day, however you look at it. Our “spring” has already been kind of weird, we had an 85 degree day last week and temps in the 30s the past few nights, and Beck just has no clue how to dress for this weather and I keep telling her layers, but do kids ever listen?
Nope, they don’t.
This salad, though is great for all temperatures. It’s super easy because you only cook the farro and the salmon, and the dressing reminds you of Asian Chicken Salad but less sweet and less middle school, and raw bok choy needs to become a thing in your life RIGHT this instant. It’s like a crunchier, more watery cabbage, in a good way because sometimes raw cabbage can be a little bit raw, amirite?
Plus, seared salmon. Buttery and healthy and sexy.
For the salad dressing, you’ll need garlic, rice vinegar, sesame oil, honey, and soy sauce. Then we’ll have some farro, bok choy, cucumber, sunflower seeds, cilantro, and green onion for the salad. Then THAT gets topped with salmon. Maybe some lime wedges for serving. Easy stuff!
First, cook the farro to the package directions (the 10-minute stuff from Trader Joe’s is my JAM), and make the salad dressing in the bottom of a big salad bowl. Grated garlic, soy sauce, honey, vinegar, sesame oil. Whisk. Taste. Adjust to your preference, and set aside!
Then, start the salmon. Here’s my favorite way to cook it. Put the salmon skin-side down in a cold cast iron skillet (or whatever kind of skillet you like). Turn the heat to medium-high and let the salmon very slowly start to cook from the bottom. This renders the fat in the skin and gets the skin super duper crispy.
When the edges of the salmon become opaque (you can tell that they’re cooking), flip the salmon. Let it sear for 2 minutes or so on the top, flip it BACK to the skin side, and eat! It should be medium and flaky and perfect. We cook salmon like this all the time and it’s our favorite method.
While the salmon is working, prep your salad veggies. Cilantro leaves, sliced cucumber, lime wedges, sliced bok choy and scallions. GREEN FOOD FTW.
Now, when the farro is done toss it with the dressing while it’s still warm to absorb some of that great flavor.
Then, add the salad veggies and the sunflower seeds to the farro and toss the salad together.
Serve with the salmon and lime wedges.
PS while I was photographing this this was my view.
THIS SALAD, guys. The dressing is really great, and while farro and sunflower seeds are necessarily traditional Asian ingredients, they add great nuttiness and texture that go perfectly here.
Happy spring, you deserve it.
- 1/2 cup quick-cooking farro, cooked to package directions and cooled slightly
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
- 1 tablespoon soy sauce
- 1 teaspoon sesame oil
- 1 clove garlic, grated
- 2/3 pounds salmon filet, skin-on, cut into 2 pieces
- salt, to taste
- 4 heads baby bok choy
- 1/2 cup sliced cucumber
- 1 scallion, thinly sliced
- 1/4 cup fresh cilantro leaves
- 2 tablespoons salted sunflower seeds
- lime wedges for serving
- For the dressing, whisk together the honey, vinegar, soy sauce, sesame oil, and garlic in the bottom of a large bowl. Taste, and adjust the seasoning to your preference.
- Place the salmon skin-side down in a cold oiled cast iron skillet. Turn the heat to medium-high and sprinkle the salmon with salt. Let the salmon cook for about 10 minutes until the edges become opaque and the skin is crispy, then flip the salmon and sear for 2 minutes on the second side for medium-rare salmon.
- Add the cooked farro to the prepared dressing and toss for one minute. Add the salad veggies and the sunflower seeds and toss with the farro mixture.
- Serve the salad topped with a piece of salmon and a lime wedge.