Monday, March 22, 2010

Sprouting 101

What is sprouting?

Sprouting is soaking seeds or grains so that they are an actual live food. Like a seed that you plant in the ground and water, they start to grow, this is the same thing, you are essentially "planting the seed" and making it a live food.

Why should I sprout?

Enzymes are important for sustaining all of the functions of the body. "Without enzymes we would die. Thus enzyme depletion causes aging, slowing the cellurlar processes and cellular reporduction and causing cells to be susceptible to free radical damage. We age as the body becomes unalbe to replace old cells with healthy new ones. Staying young and healthy is simply a matter of keeping enzyme activity maximized in your body" (12 Steps to Whole Foods). Sprouts do exactly that they are a powerhouse in enzymes. Wheat that has been sprouted has 28% more thaimine, 315% more riboflavin, 66% more niacin, and 65% more pantothenic acid, 278% more folic acid and 300% more vitamin C. It also has 300-400% more fiber and 40 times more enzymes. Are you excited yet! Sprouting is great for food storage, because if anything ever happened you could get all of the nutrients you needed from sprouts.

What can I sprout?
Grains, seeds, legumes, and even nuts. Make sure that they are organic though, because a lot of conventional seeds are sprayed with chemicals and will not sprout.

How do I sprout.

Get a quart jar, and fill it a 1/3 of the way with seeds. Fill the rest of the 2/3's with filtered water. You want clean water to soak the seeds, so make sure that it is filtered. Leave it to sit on the counter over night. In the morning drain the water and rinse off the nuts, seeds, or grains. Let it sit on the counter top for 3-4 days, and rinse it twice a day. The seeds, and grains will start to grow little tails. When the tail is as long as the seed, that is when they are at peak nutrition. They are ready to eat. You can then put them in the fridge to slow down the growing process and continue eating them. Nuts on the other hand will not grow a tail, they are ready to eat after you have soaked them and drained them overnight.

Step 1
Put the dry seeds in the jar. Here I have rye, millet, oat groats, amaranth, and teff.
Step #2
Soak the grains overnight. This picture is the next morning after I had dumped off the soak water, and then rinsed them again.
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Step #3
Here is the grains after I have let them sit out on the counter top and rinsed them once a day for three days.

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