A healthier version of classic shortcake biscuits made with the Italian ancient grain farro. JUMP TO RECIPE
Once the warm weather arrives here in the Boston area, one of the things I really look forward to is local strawberries. Usually by mid-June the season is in full swing and the farm stands in my neighborhood are bursting with this sweet, delicious fruit. (Botanically speaking, strawberries are actually considered fruit, not berries! Read more about this little-known fact here.) Supermarket strawberries can’t hold a candle to fresh picked, and unless you buy organic, they’re usually loaded with pesticides. So I make sure I enjoy the season while it lasts which always includes a serving or two of strawberry shortcake. This year I’m putting a twist on the classic dessert by making it with these delicious Farro Shortcake Biscuits.
Super nutritious farro (pronounced FAHR-oh) is a type of wheat (derived from emmer wheat) that was popular with the ancient Romans and has been a staple of Italian cooking for hundreds of years. It has a nutty, earthy taste and, like other strains of wheat, can be ground into flour. You’ll need farro flour to make Farro Shortcake Biscuits but you’ll most likely have to make your own because farro flour is not widely available. Fortunately, farro (in its whole grain form) can be found at many mainstream grocery stores nowadays, and with it, you can make farro flour by grinding the grains in a grain mill or high-power blender.
Making your own flour in order to whip up a batch of Farro Shortcake Biscuits might seem like a lot of extra effort but if you have a Vitamix, or similar appliance, it takes no time at all. (If using a Vitamix I recommend processing with the dry grains container.) Consider too, that farro flour has twice the amount of protein and fiber as modern wheat flour, is rich in magnesium and Vitamin B, and has nutritional properties that help lower cholesterol and boost immunity. So I’d say a little bit of extra effort is definitely worth it!
Farro Shortcake Biscuits are mildly sweet with a clean taste and rustic texture. There’s no need to cut them in half as they’re fairly thin. Just top them with fresh berries and whipped cream for a simple, but satisfying dessert. For other farro recipes check out Orange Pecan Farro Salad, Lemony Shrimp with White Beans and Farro, and Farro Salmon Salad.
If you make Farro Shortcake Biscuits don’t forget to snap a pic and tag me over on Instagram @QueenofMyKitchen. I’d love to see your creation!
- 1½ cup (226g) farro flour (see notes), plus extra for rolling out dough
- ½ cup (50g) finely ground, blanched almond flour
- 2½ teaspoons baking powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 5 tablespoons butter, cut into ½-inch pieces
- ½ cup (114g) plain, full fat Greek yogurt
- ¼ cup maple syrup
- 1 tablespoon milk (use dairy free milk such as almond milk if desired)
- 1 tablespoon coconut sugar
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees and line a half sheet pan with parchment paper.
- Whisk together the farro flour, almond flour, baking powder, and salt. Cut the butter into the flour mixture with a pastry blender or two knives until the size of peas.
- In a small bowl whisk together the Greek yogurt and maple syrup. Add to the flour mixture and mix until a soft dough forms (don’t over mix).
- Roll the dough out on a lightly floured surface to a thickness of about ½ inch. Stamp out 15 - 2½ inch shortcakes with a round cookie cutter and place on the baking sheet. Brush the tops with milk and sprinkle with coconut sugar.
- Bake in the bottom third of the oven for 15-20 minutes until golden brown on the bottoms and around the edges.
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