It’s fall!  I love the beautiful colors, breaking out my snuggly sweaters, and piling up mounds of gourds and pumpkins on every available surface.  After a brief scare that snow might arrive as early as the first week of October (it stayed north of us, thankfully) and finally figuring out what was wrong with the furnace (that off/on switch makes a difference, apparently), I’ve settled in to the season and started concocting enough vats of soup to last… um… a week, at the rate we’re going.

I started out with one of my favorites, a copycat version of Olive Garden’s Zuppa Toscana (Tuscan potato soup).  So far, so good.  Then I decided to try out a new recipe, mostly because I had all the ingredients on hand (score!) and didn’t want to spend an hour driving to the store and back.  My bag of farro was gathering dust in the pantry because, seriously, who cooks with that stuff?  (Yes, I’m sure plenty of people do, but do any of them send me their recipes?)  Anyway, this vegetarian Italian farro soup sounded delicious and warm and wonderful, so I forged ahead with my weird ingredients and ended up with a pot of steaming, colorful goodness.

My husband was not exactly a fan.  He liked the farro (I did too), but apparently canned tomatoes in soup aren’t his thing (I should remember this by now, but I “forget” every time).  If, however, you are like me and don’t mind a little flavor tang in your food, don’t let the tomato haters stop you from giving this a try.  Give the flavors a day to meld, and it gets even better.  Or just leave out the tomatoes.  I won’t tell.

Since I did the unthinkable and actually followed the recipe this time, I’m just going to send you over to the original blog post.  Wait.  I did make a few changes.  Instead of parsnips, I used a total of three large carrots (four would have been better, but that’s all I had).  I used homemade chicken broth (no salt) and still didn’t need to add extra salt at the end (just the 1/2 tsp. in step 3).  I used maybe half a bunch of kale, left over from the Zuppa Toscana, and chopped it into narrow ribbons–it was more than enough.  I also substituted a can of great northern beans for the cannellini.

Happy soup making!

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