Brain healthy meal: Lemony farro salad with avocado and pistachios

Designed specifically to help boost brain health, the MIND diet emphasizes leafy greens and whole grains, among other healthy items. When many people hear the word diet, they immediately think "bland" or "tasteless." Here's a recipe for a snack that challenges that notion, while fitting in with the MIND diet approach:

Lemony farro salad with avocado and pistachios

  • 1 cup uncooked farro perlato
  • 1 cup thinly sliced lacinato kale
  • 1 cup arugula
  • 1 cup fresh basil, chopped
  • 1 tbsp finley sliced chives
  • 1 avocado, peeled, pitted and sliced
  • 1/4 cup crumbled feta
  • 1/2 cup pistachio nuts, chopped

    For the vinaigrette:
  • Grated zest of 1 lemon
  • 2 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 6 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  1. In a large saucepan, bring 3 quarts of salted water to a boil. Add farro perlato. Lower heat and simmer, covered, until tender, about 20 minutes. (You can use regular farro, but cooking time will double.) Drain as you would pasta, then spread on a baking sheet to cool.
  2. While farro is cooking, massage kale with fingers until wilted.
  3. To make vinaigrette, whisk together lemon zest and juice, oil, cumin, salt and pepper in a small bowl.
  4. After farro has cooled, toss it in a bowl with kale and arugula, then use your fingers to evenly distribute greens through farro.
  5. Pour vinaigrette over farro and greens, add basil and chives, and toss gently to coat.
  6. To serve, spoon greens mixture onto a platter. Lay slices of avocado over salad, sprinkle feta and pistachios over top and serve. If not serving immediately, refrigerate salad, but let it come to room temperature before serving.

Recipe adapted from Spicebox Kitchen