Sprouting ABC's

by WindFlowerSong

Sprouts are a wonderful, nutritious, high protein, low fat addition to a raw lifestyle. There is more protein, ounce for ounce, in sprouts, than in steak. Sprouts have that pleasant "crunch" and are a wonderful replacement for noodles in raw soup, and every bit as satisfying. What's more, they are easily sprouted at home. Once sprouted, the enzyme inhibitors are gone, the fat is used up, and the perfect food is born.

When you buy seeds to sprout, make sure they are not coated with pesticides. Seeds sold for planting purposes most likely will be. Make sure you buy seeds meant to be used as food only.

You don't need fancy sprouters or equipment to sprout. You can use clean mason jars, the kind you use for canning. The lids come in 2 parts, the ring and the disk. Get some plastic canvas at your local craft shop, and cut circles the size of the disk. Put the ring on, and voila, you have a cheap sprouter!

Put your seeds in, soak in water for about an hour, then pour off the liquid and set the jar on its side. (Bigger seeds may need to soak overnight) Every morning, re-soak the seeds for about 15 minutes, and pour off the water. Your sprout garden will be ready in a few days. Regular rinsing is crucial, especially in the warmer months. Start some today, and enjoy them in a few days. Once sprouted, store in the refrigerator. Eat quickly, while they are at their peak of perfection!

All the hopes, dreams, aspirations, and plans for the plant's future, lies in the tiny seed-all its energy, all its life force! You can add sprouts to salads, raw soups, eat with guacamole and diced tomatoes, or eat them alone.

Here';s some to try:

Adzuki and Mung beans...these look and taste alike, except one is red and one is green. These sprout very quickly, and are the basic bean sprouts used in Chinese cooking. You can purchase a pound of seeds at the Asian grocery for a dollar or so. They are so easy to sprout, and have a nice bean flavor. Adzuki bean sprouts contain: Vitamins A, B, C and E. High in Calcium, Iron, Niacin, All Essential Amino Acids except Tryptophan and Protein: 25%.

Alfalfa ...one of the most nutritious sprouts known to humankind. Alfalfa has been used for centuries for overall support and rejuvenation. Alfalfa is a rich source of calcium, magnesium phosphorus, iron, potassium and trace minerals, and is one of the biggest plant sources of protein.

Alfalfa contains all eight essential enzymes: lapase to break down fat, amylase, sucrase, which converts cane sugar to dextrose, peroxidase, which is an oxidizing aid for blood, pectinase to digest starches, coagulase to coagulate milk and help to clot blood, emulsion to act on sugars, which helps digestion, and protase to digest proteins. Furthermore, it contains every essential amino acid. Tryptophan 0.3%, Aspartic Acid 2.3%, Threonine 1.0%, Serine 1.0%, Proline 1.2%, Glutamic Acid 2.7% Alanine 1.1%, Glycine 1.1%, Valine 1.0%, Cystine 0.2%, Isoleucine 0.8%, Methionine 0.3%, Phenylalanine 1.0%, Tyrosine 0.5%, Lysine 1.1%, Histadine ).4%, Arginine 1.1%.

Alfalfa also contains: Triacontoanol, Vitamin A (high concentration), Thiamine, Riboflavin, Panatothenic Acid, Niacin, Pyridoxine, Choline, Bentaine, Folic Acid, Co-enzymes, Crude proteins, Minerals: Nitrogen, Potassium, Phosphorus, Calcium, Magnesium, Sulphur, Manganese, Iron, Boron, Copper and Zinc. In all, alfalfa sprouts are a tasty powerhouse of vitamins, minerals, and live enzymes.

Black popcorn sprouts ... these sprouts taste like a fresh summer ear of corn on the cob- very sweet. (However, you have to remove the seed... it stays hard.) Buy black popcorn at the supermarket. It takes about a week to sprout and grow. Wait until it has blades over an inch long.

Broccoli sprouts...these sprouts have more nutrition than adult broccoli, and are immune boosters, and cancer protectors and fighters. Broccoli sprouts taste just like broccoli. If you like this vegetable, you'll love the sprout version. If you don't like this vegetable you're more likely to like it as sprouts, if for no other reason than they are so amazingly healthy - full of antioxidants and the usual bevy of vitamins and minerals. Broccoli sprouts can contain 50 times the sulfurophane found in mature broccoli, by weight, so you get as much antioxidant in 1 ounce of Broccoli Sprouts as you would if you ate 3 pounds of fully grown Broccoli (Johns Hopkins research). Broccoli sprouts contain: Vitamins A, B, C, E and K, Anti-Oxidants, Calcium, Iron, Magnesium, Phosphorus, Potassium, Zinc, Carotene, Chlorophyll, Amino Acids, Trace Elements, Antioxidants, and Protein: up to 35%.

Cabbage sprouts...red cabbage makes beautiful sprouts, and green does as well. Cabbage sprouts have a mild, cabbage-y flavor. Cabbage sprouts contain: Vitamins A, B, C, E and K, Anti-Oxidants, Calcium, Iron, Magnesium, Phosphorus, Potassium, Zinc, Carotene, Chlorophyll, Amino Acids, Trace Elements, Antioxidants, and Protein: up to 35%.

Fava beans, broad beans ... when sprouted, these look like lima beans on steroids. These beans have naturally occurring L-dopa, a precursor to dopamine, one of the brain's "feel good" chemicals. These beans can actually relieve pain, anxiety, depression, and they initiate the pituitary gland to produce HGH, which scientists are researching at this moment, as "the fountain of youth." (Production of HGH slows down or stops after adolescence.) It can rebuild tissue, and rejuvenate it as well. After eating them only a few days you may notice clearer and softer skin, stronger fingernails, and less pain. One note of caution though...some people are allergic to favas (like some people are deathly allergic to peanuts). There is a disease called Favism, caused by a lack of an enzyme (G6PD). It is an inherited disease, mostly in people of ancient Greek origins. If you happen to be of ancient Greek origin, there is a blood test that can check for this rare chromosome abnormality.) Fava and broad bean sprouts are similar to soy and mung beans in nutritional analysis.

Fenugreek ...a sweet tasting sprout that smells like butterscotch. Fenugreek is supposedly ideal for those desiring to lose weight and is used as a digestive aid, and even a cancer fighter. Fenugreek contains Vitamins A, B, C, E, Calcium, Iron, Magnesium, Phosphorus, Potassium, Zinc, Carotene, Chlorophyll, Phyto-Nutrients - Excellent for Women (Breast Health), Amino Acids, Trace Elements, Digestive enzymes, and Protein: 30%

Garbanzo beans (chic peas )... far superior and sweeter than the canned (cooked, dead) variety. You can buy a bag for a buck at any grocery. Soak them overnight, rinse, and soak again. They will double in size. In a few days, they'll sprout a squiggly tail. You can make raw hummus with them by adding some olive oil and spices. Throw them in raw soups and on salads. (They look a bit like a big, tan pollywog with their squiggly tail...but you can remove the tail so they look more like a bean.) After soaking, keep in the refrigerator, and rinse daily. Garbanzo bean sprouts contain: Vitamins A and C, Calcium, Iron, Magnesium, Amino Acids, and Protein: 20%.

Garlic, onion, chives, leek ... these little sprouts taste like their adult contemporaries -with the flavor turned up - and make a super addition to any salad or raw soup. These beautiful little black seeds produce some of the strongest, most recognizable flavors in the sprout universe. They take longer to grow than any other sprout - from 10 - 15 days. (Freeze seeds before sprouting, they'll sprout better.) These sprouts contain: Vitamins A, B, C and E, Calcium, Chlorophyll, Iron, Magnesium, Niacin, Phosphorus, Potassium, Amino Acids, Trace Elements, and Protein: 20%.

Grains, wheat, barley, rye...Grains are a quick sprout, taking as little as 24 hours and no more than 2 or 3 days to produce a finished sprout. If you let large grains (wheat, barley, rye, etc.) grow for several days they produce grass. All grains are sweet, though some more than others. Kids love them because of their sweetness. Grain sprouts taste nice with a drizzle of raw honey.
These sprouts are good sources of Vitamins A, B, C, E and K, Calcium, Iron, Lecithin, Magnesium, Pantothenic Acid, Phosphorus, Potassium, All Amino Acids, Trace Elements and Protein: up to 30%.

Lentils ...these inexpensive flat little brown beans sprout quickly and taste mildly bean-like. They contain: Vitamins A, B, C and E, Calcium, Iron, Phosphorus, and Protein: 25%

Mustard sprouts ...tangy, good at the soaked stage, with a nutty crunch. Mustard sprouts are great for making non-fat, live mustard, and add a nice crunch in raw soups. When mustard sprouts get to the leaf stage, they have a wonderful, spicy flavor. Mustard sprouts contain: Vitamins A, B, C, E and K, Anti-Oxidants, Calcium, Iron, Magnesium, Phosphorus, Potassium, Zinc, Carotene, Chlorophyll, Amino Acids, Trace Elements, Antioxidants, and Protein: up to 35%.

Mung bean see Adzuki bean;

Peanuts... these sprouts taste just like peanuts! Soak them over night, rinse, and soak again. Try them with a little Cajun seasoning for hot; peanuts. These contain: Vitamins A, B, C and E, Calcium, Iron, Magnesium, Niacin, Phosphorus, Potassium, Amino Acids, and Protein: 20-25%.

Peas, pigeon peas, black-eyed peas...these lovely sprouts taste like sweet, fresh peas and keep their nice bright green color. They need to be soaked overnight before sprouting. Some peas may sink to the bottom and won’t sprout, and remain hard. (They are smaller than those soaked and swollen with water). Toss out unsprouted peas, rather than risk a broken tooth. These sprouts contain: Vitamins A, B, C and E, Calcium, Iron, Phosphorus, Amino Acids, and Protein: 25%.

Pumpkin seed sprouts...this exceptional, buttery flavored delight is best eaten FRESH (as soon as finished), as they tend to get bitter as they age. Pumpkins may be best as soaks; - where they don't really put out much more than a bulge at their tip. Suggestion: taste them at every stage - right after soaking and again at every rinse/drain - and see how you like them best. Pumpkin seed sprouts contain: Vitamins A, B, C and E, Calcium, Iron, Magnesium, Niacin, Phosphorus, Potassium Amino Acids, and Protein: 20-30%.

Radish seed sprouts...one radish sprout tastes exactly like one radish...all the crispness and flavor of a full-grown radish, with a better texture. They have a nice, bright, spicy flavor. Some Daikon and Asian radishes are hot like horseradish. They also add a really unique flavor to soups and salads. Radish seed sprouts contain: Vitamins A, B, C, E and K, Anti-Oxidants, Calcium, Iron, Magnesium, Phosphorus, Potassium, Zinc, Carotene, Chlorophyll, Amino Acids, Trace Elements, Antioxidants, and Protein: up to 35%.

Red clover ...a very nutritious sprout that is touted as excellent for menstrual problems. Tender and crisp, red clover is a skinny little sprout, almost identical to Alfalfa in flavor - nutty and mild, but with a lighter green leaf. It sheds its hulls better than alfalfa, and lasts longer in the refrigerator (as a sprout). Red clover contains: Vitamins A, B, C, E and K, Calcium, Iron, Magnesium, Phosphorus, Potassium, Zinc, Carotene, Chlorophyll, Amino Acids, Trace Elements, and Protein: up to 35%.

Sunflower...a delicious sprout with a sweet, nutty flavor. Not all of them sprout though. Commercial de-hulling machines nick and break some of the kernels, and these won't sprout. You must remove the non-sprouters, so they don't go bad. Sunflower contains Vitamins A, B, C and E, Calcium, Iron, Magnesium, Niacin, Phosphorus, Potassium, Amino Acids and Protein: 20-30%.

Soy bean sprouts...these look like mung and adzuki, only a bit bigger. Note: Much of the soy for sale has been genetically modified by Monsanto, which includes a sprouting inhibitor in the seeds. Although they might say organic, if they were grown from a Monsanto bean, they probably will not sprout. You may have better luck buying soy sprouts from an Asian grocery store. Soy bean sprouts contain: Vitamins A, B, C and E, Calcium, Iron, Magnesium, Niacin, Phosphorus, Potassium, All Essential Amino Acids and Protein: 20-30%.

TIP: don't try to sprout watermelon seeds. They are very bitter.

 

 

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