Lately, I’ve gotten out of the habit of sprouting my own sprouts for salads and sandwiches. With spring just around the corner and a batch of arugula and spinach seeds planted indoors in a few pots of soil, I felt inspired to start a jar of alfalfa sprouts on the counter.
Research shows that sprouts are a veritable fountain of youth. Sprouts abound with antioxidants, they are full of protein, chlorophyl, vitamins, minerals and amino acids. Broccoli sprouts have been found to contain 50 times as much of the antioxidant sulfurophane as mature broccoli. Wheat grass juice is the closest substance to hemoglobin, and is therefore a phenomenal blood purifier and liver de-toxifier. Sprouts contain enzymes, giving your body a much-needed rest as they digest themselves – invigorating you while requiring no help from your body to process them. New research indicates that peanut sprouts reduce harmful cholesterol and that sunflower, buckwheat and grain sprouts dramatically improve the quality of life for diabetics. The list goes on and on. ~sproutpeople
Sprouting seeds is easy and no special equipment is required besides a glass jar, some cheesecloth and a rubber band. I buy Mumm’s Seeds at my local health food store but I have also seen them at some grocery stores in the produce section. I paid $7 for this bag but it will grow between 20-25 cups of sprouts! To this day, I have only sprouted alfalfa seeds but this morning I was inspired by some youtube videos to broaden my experience and try sprouting other seeds, such as wheat berrries, mung beans, lentils, broccoli, and even quinoa. I am also keen to try baking sprouted grain bread and will post my progress once I start experimenting.
To sprout your alfalfa sprouts, place 1 tablespoon of the seeds into a glass jar. Cover the jar with cheesecloth and hold this in place with a rubber band. Add water, Swirl and drain. Refill with about 1 cup of water and let soak for 2 to 6 hours. Drain water.
Rinse twice a day by filling with water, gently swirling and then draining thoroughly. I keep the jar near my kitchen sink so that I remember to rinse. The picture above shows the second day. Below is the third day.
Sprouts should be ready in 3 to 6 days. Below is the fourth day. Once the seeds sprout and the little green leaf is evident, place the sprouts in a large bowl of water. The husks will rise to the surface and are easily removed.
Drain the sprouts thoroughly and store in a containers in the refrigerator. Eat within the next few days. Sprouts are wonderful on their own, in a smoothie, in sprouted-grain breads, on a salad or in a sandwich. Enjoy this fresh and nutritious treat!