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Maple-Glazed Farro Piccolo with Peach Compote and Yogurt

Farro layered with peaches and yogurt—featured here in evening attire with borage blooms and blackberries—is no less enchanting served in small Mason jars.

4 servings


About 1 hour, plus at least 2 hours of chilling time


The late 1980s, when I moved to Berlin, were simpler times. Simpler times, of course, default to “fewer options.” West German supermarkets didn’t stock 20 different varieties of the same thing like stores do today in the United States. West German supermarkets were also comparatively small, partly because European cities are modeled on a collection of small villages, and partly because patrons purchased many of their cherished Lebensmitteln from specialty stores: butchers, bakers, fishmongers, and so on. West Germans seemed to understand inherently that sometimes fewer options reflect higher quality. No such privation greeted me in the dairy aisle, however. Cheeses fresh and aged, quark, crème fraîche, milk and cream, butter, yogurt. Alone the yogurt . . . While we in the U.S. had our Dannon fruit-on-the-bottom single servings in 1988, nothing could have prepared me for the German equivalent. Super-smooth and rich, with beguilingly real-tasting fruit bottoms—and something else, something chewy mingling with the fruit. Wheat berries! Specifically Einkorn. The mother of all farros. It might have been my happiest cultural discovery—after Schweinshaxen and Pilsner.

We recreate this combination here with Anson Mills Farro Piccolo, fresh peaches, Greek yogurt, and a touch of maple syrup and lemon peel thrown in for interest. You might not experience a Proustian moment with this delicious repast, but you will surely experience love at first bite. Dig deep.

Cooking Remarks

Resist the urge to stir the layers together like a heathen. This combination is best enjoyed when each of its components meets for the first time on a spoon.

equipment mise en place

For the farro, you will need a rasp-style grater, a small heavy-bottomed saucepan with a tight-fitting lid, and a small bowl.

For the peach compote, you will need a medium bowl, a sharp Y-shaped vegetable peeler, a sharp paring knife, a medium heavy-bottomed saucepan, and small bowl or 2-cup liquid measuring cup.

For assembly, you will need four 12-ounce wide-mouthed glasses or Mason jars. 

  • for the farro:

    • ½
      cup (3.5 ounces) Anson Mills Farro Piccolo
    • ½
      cup plus 2 tablespoons (5 ounces) spring or filtered water, plus additional as needed
    • ¼
      teaspoon fine sea salt
    • 2
      tablespoons (1.4 ounces) Grade A amber and robust maple syrup
    • ½
      teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
  • for the peach compote:

    • 2 to 2½
      tablespoons juice from 1 juicy lemon
    • pounds ripe but firm yellow peaches
    • Scant ⅓ cup (2 ounces) sugar, plus additional as needed
    • 1
      tablespoon (0.25 ounce) cornstarch
    • Pinch of fine sea salt
    • 1⅓
      cups (12 ounces) plain whole-milk Greek yogurt

    Prepare the farro: Combine the farro and water into a small heavy-bottomed saucepan with a tight-fitting lid and stir to combine. Cover, bring to a simmer over medium-low heat, and cook gently, checking and stirring a couple of times, until the farro is plump and fully tender and the water has been absorbed (fig. 1.1), about 20 minutes. If the water cooks off before the farro is tender, add a couple more tablespoons, cover, and continue to simmer. Remove from the heat and stir in the salt. Transfer the farro to a small bowl and stir in the maple syrup (fig. 1.2) and then the lemon zest. Set aside.


    Make the compote: Put the lemon juice in a medium bowl. Peel the peaches—if they are ripe (as they should be), the easiest way to peel them is to use a sharp Y-shaped vegetable peeler (fig. 2.1). Then, using a sharp paring knife, cut each peach longitudinally around the pit and twist the halves in opposite directions to separate them. If the peaches are freestone, the halves will easily come apart. Cut each half into 4 slices, removing the pit. If you have cling peaches, nothing will happen when you twist the peach halves. Instead, carve the peach into 8 sections and use the paring knife to gently pry the pieces off the pit one by one (fig. 2.2). Cut each segment into 3 or 4 bite-size pieces and toss them into the bowl with the lemon juice. When all of the peaches are prepared, add the sugar, cornstarch, and salt and stir well to combine; the peach juices will appear milky (fig 2.3). Turn the peaches and their juice into a medium heavy-bottomed saucepan, place the pan over medium heat, and cover. After a couple of minutes, uncover, bring to a simmer, and cook, stirring frequently, for about 20 seconds, until the compote is fully thickened (fig. 2.4). Transfer to a medium bowl or 2-cup liquid measuring cup (you should have 2 cups, or 1.25 pounds). Taste the compote; if it’s too tart for your liking, stir in some additional sugar. Let cool to room temperature.


    To assemble, stir the yogurt briskly. Evenly divide the maple-glazed farro among four 12-ounce wide-mouthed glasses or Mason jars (¼ cup, or 1.5 ounces, per glass); shake each glass to distribute the farro evenly. Next, spoon ½ cup (5 ounces) of peach compote into each glass and use the tip of the spoon to level the surfaces. Finally, spoon ⅓ cup (3 ounces) of the yogurt into each glass and swirl the top with the tip of a spoon. Cover with plastic wrap or the lids and refrigerate for at least 2 hours, or for up to 3 days. Serve chilled for breakfast or dessert.

    1. 1.1
    2. 1.2
    1. 2.1
    2. 2.2
    3. 2.3
    4. 2.4