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Who doesn't want fresh, nutritious sprouts right at your finger tips?
The benefits of home sprouting
Who doesn't want fresh, nutritious sprouts right at your finger tips? whether you eat a hand full of sprouts all on their own, or add them to your favorite dish, shaping a beautiful presentation. In any case these dazzling seedlings when brought to life with a little water and love provide serious nourishment.
According to The International Sprout Growers Association, you can grow sprouts year round at home, providing the family with amazing health benefits. TISGA highlights some of the most significant research surrounding the health benefits of sprouts. Including studies from the International Journal of Applied Science, stating that sprouts have the highest concentration of phytonutrients per calorie of any food. Phytonutrients play an active role in the amelioration of disease.
See the research from the University of Ulster, providing scientific evidence that 100 grams a day of sprouts may prevent cancer. There is a huge database of information on the amazing health benefits of sprouts on ISGA's website. Be sure to check out their Articles and get educated on how amazing these small seeds are for dis-ease and prevention.
We know that sprouts are the best thing in the kitchen, fresh and easy to grow, we will look at more of the health benefits to give you even more of a reason to get started on growing them and eating them daily.
Varieties of sprouts
These are the main varieties, there are an abundance more from chia, flax, and fennel, depending where you take your seed sprouting journey, I suggest starting within the basic realm and start to move on to more exotic seeds as you began to get in a rhythm.
- Soybean. Soybean Sprouts are very high in protein, and high in vitamin C, folate and fiber. Great in casseroles and stews.
- Mung Bean. Mung Bean Sprouts are a good source of protein, fiber and vitamin C and A. Excellent for Asian Dishes.
- Onion. Onion sprouts are 20% protein and a good source of vitamins C, D and A. Most often used in Salads and sandwiches.
- Mustard. Mustard plant is an excellent source of essential minerals including potassium, calcium and phosphorous. With a hot and spicy flavor, use in egg salad or anything that needs spice.
- Sunflower. A rich source of lecithin and vitamin D. It breaks down fatty acids into an easily digestible, water soluble form. Just lovely on salads or for juicing.
- Radish. Radish Sprouts have 29 times more vitamin C than milk and 4 times the vitamin A, 10 times more calcium than a potato and contain more vitamin C than pineapple. Serve fresh, uncooked on salads and sandwiches, taste amazing with mustard.
- Lentil. Lentil Sprouts are 25% protein. Great with soup or steamed veggies.
- Broccoli. High in the cancer-fighting compound, sulforaphane. Add half a cup of broccoli in your meal daily and experience the amazing benefits. Excellent juiced or in salads and sandwiches.
- Alfalfa. Alfalfa Sprouts contain significant dietary sources of phytoestrogens connected with prevention of menopausal symptoms, osteoporosis, cancer and heart disease. Use with salads, omelets and sandwiches.
- Clover. Clover sprouts contain the most significant dietary sources of isoflavones of any sprout variety. Isoflavones have been proven to have powerful anti-cancer properties. Add loads of this sprout to sandwiches and salads.
the basics of sprouting
Each seed variety calls for different directions, but they all require the basic process. Soak, drain, rinse, and allow for air circulation. There are very inexpensive ways to sprout at home, east starter kits or simply buying stainless steel mesh jar lids. It all depends on how big you want to go. I personally have a jar going all the time, once that jar is getting low, I start a new batch, usually of a new variety, to keep things interesting.
What is so wonderful about sprouting, is the little time it takes to achieve such wonderfully nutritious food. It is so easy to feed the kids a handful of sprouts, it is just as exciting to them as eating fresh peas in the garden. I usually like to give kids the bigger bean, as they are easy to put in a bowel and fun to eat.
How To Sprout
This video is GREAT for a quick, basic lesson on sprouting seeds at home!
Here's what you need:
- A jar, 1 litre to 4 litre will do.
- A drying rack or something that allows you to invert the jar at an angle.
- Some screen or cheesecloth with a rubber band, or mesh lids as recommended above.
- Fresh water.
- Seeds with good germination, Organic, and NON GMO.
Next, Soak the seed: in a sterile jar. Use about one cup of water to every tablespoon of seed.
Soak Times: These are basic guidelines. Try not to over soak your seeds. I set a timer.
- Broccoli and related plants cabbage, kale, radish etc. 2-3h
- Other small seeds 2-6 hrs. Large seeds peas, lentils, grain, etc. 6-12hrs.
- Mucilaginous seeds cress, arugula, chia, flax, basil - do not soak, just mist to keep moist.
Rinse and drain 2 or 3 times each day with fresh cold water and invert the jar on angle to allow excess water to drain. This keeps the seeds from molding, or going bad. Rinsing is important, and a great time to give your seeds some love!
Spouts will differ from variety, but within 2-9 days you will have completely edible sprouts.
Place the finished sprouts in as sink of cold water and swirl to separate the hulls. The hulls are fine to eat but they will start to ferment so you need to eat your sprouts within a few days. Drain the sprouts and allow to dry for a few hours before storing in fridge.
my recommended seeds
Quality Certified Organic Non-GMO Sprouting Seed Mixes from The Sprout House
You will love sprouting at home, I was so excited to write this article. Sprouting is for everyone, you do not need a green thumb, it is so easy, bringing fresh greens into the kitchen The kids love it, they like to watch them grow and it is so simple they can be a part of every step, even staring their own jars to care for.
The nutrition added to your daily diet is simply one you shouldn't live without. The health benefits are so easily achieved, right at your fingertips.
Get your sprout on! you will love it.
Drop us a line, ask us a question, or ten! we love communicating with our readers! Happy Sprouting 🙂
This post was originally published on August 11, 2016.