Traditional risotto is made with arborio or carnaroli rice stripped of their bran layer to give access to amylopectin, the starch that makes risotto creamy. The ancient grain called farro contains a similar starch, so it’s ideal for risotto style dishes.
Farro risotto, or farrotto is made with the whole or pearled grain of the farro so that the nutty and earthy taste of the grain remains, as do the healthy ingredients of the whole grain farro, which include fiber, magnesium, and many essential vitamins.
In the case of farro, since the base of the dish has a more intense flavor already, farrotto is best made with strong flavored additions like porcini mushrooms, the addition of which which enhances the earthiness of the dish. The picture is of a fabulous version of just such a preparation produced by the Albergo/Ristorante da Remo in Monzone, deep in the heart of the northern Tuscany territory called La Lunigiana.
A version of this dish in springtime might include asparagus, peas, or fava beans, the traditionally celebrated signs of the new growing season in Italy.