Election Day Facts and Great Grains Clams with Farro and Wine

by Joanne on November 6, 2012

From the UticaOD:  5 Things to Know about Election Day: (Original source: Gate House News Service)

  1. Nationwide Election Day was instituted by Congress in 1845. The day was set as the Tuesday after the first Monday in November. The earliest Election Day can be is Nov. 2, and the latest it can be is Nov. 8.
  2. The last polls (in Western states) will close at 8 p.m. PST. For a list of state opening and closing times, check out OPENING AND CLOSING TIMES 2012
  3. Several states have declared Election Day a civic holiday, while others allow workers to take time off to vote.
  4. The magic number today is 270. That’s the number of Electoral votes a candidate needs to secure the presidency. There are 538 total votes: 435 representatives, 100 senators and three electors from Washington, D.C.
  5. Whoever wins the election will be inaugurated on Sunday, Jan. 20, 2013.


The chewy ancient grain of farro coupled with fresh little neck clams results in a lip smacking one pot stew. It’s an easy meal made within an hour from start to finish.  You’ll have time to sit down and watch the election results rolllllll in…allllll night.

saturday in the kitchen19

The Farro – you may cook this ahead of time, if preferred

  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 3/4 cup farro
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 whole pepper corns
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt

Bring all ingredients to a boil. Decrease to a simmer, cover and cook for 25 minutes. Remove bay leaf, drain any excess liquid and set aside.

The Stew

  • 1 to 2 dozen little neck clams (If you use 1 dozen, I recommend adding chopped clams later in the recipe)
  • 2 TBS olive oil
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 1 cup thin sliced carrots
  • 1 cup sliced celery
  • 3 tsp minced garlic
  • 2 tsp minced fresh rosemary
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1/4 tsp red chili flakes
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1 cup white wine
  • 15 oz can diced tomatoes
  • 1/2 pint sliced mushrooms
  • 1 1/2 cups water or vegetable broth
  • 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
  • 2 TBS lemon juice and some lemon wedges
  • olive oil
  • parsley

Rinse and clean the clams.  Heat olive oil in a large Dutch oven over medium heat. Add onion, carrots, celery, garlic, 1 tsp rosemary, bay leaves, red pepper, and 1/4 tsp salt. Cook for 5 minutes.

Turn up heat to medium high and add 1/4 cup of the wine. Stir until it’s almost absorbed, about 2 minutes.  Add tomatoes, mushrooms, water/broth, and the rest of the wine, pepper, and rest of the salt.  Bring to a boil. Cook, uncovered  at a simmer for 5 – 8 minutes or until carrots are almost tender.

Add the clams and farro and the rest of the rosemary. Bring to a boil. Cover and cook over medium heat for about 4 minutes. Shake pot to open the clams.  Remove from heat and toss away any clams that didn’t open.

To serve, add lemon juice. Drizzle with a little more olive oil if you want and serve with lemon wedges and parsley.

saturday in the kitchen22

If you’re in New York, you have from 6am until 9pm to cast your very important vote. Fingers crossed

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  • At 2012.11.06 19:27, Lori said:

    I have never had Farro – I haven’t seen it in any stores, either. I would probably have to order it from the internet. I like the resurgence of the old versions of grains – they are much better for you than the genetically modified ones of today!

    • At 2012.11.07 07:46, misszippy1 said:

      I’ll add in one more little election tidbit: They picked Tues. so that no one had to travel on Sundays to get to the polling places (back in buggy days).

      Happy day after!

      • At 2012.11.07 15:16, Beth said:

        That is one gorgeous stew, on election day or any day!

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