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A dozen salads for when you're going with the grain

A dozen salads for when you're going with the grain
Farro salad with mushrooms, dill and feta (Gary Friedman / Los Angeles Times)

How's this for a great weeknight dinner – cook some grain, fold in some vegetables and herbs and maybe some cheese and nuts, if you like. It's light, filling and it can be made days in advance and freshened up at the last minute. Grain salads are definitely an idea whose time has come.

After Saturday's California Cook column raving once again about these dishes, I got a lot of mail, mainly from readers wanting more. No problem.

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Whether they're made with quinoa (which seems especially popular), barley, couscous or the Italian wheat farro, we've got a whole collection of Test Kitchen-approved recipes from the California Cookbook for you to try.

There's still a lot of summer left, but you'd better get started now. We've got even more recipes. And if you want to experiment on your own, here's a handy rundown of what we've learned about cooking grains.

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