Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Sprout your own sprouts. Or is that redundant?

 We love sprouts.  We put them on salads, sandwiches, hot veggies, whatever.  And they're so so good for you.  Sprouts like alfalfa, radish, broccoli, clover and soybean contain concentrated amounts of phytochemicals that can protect us against disease.  Canavanine, found in alfalfa, has demonstrated benefit for pancreatic, colon and leukemia cancers. Plant estrogens are also abundant in sprouts. They increase bone formation and density and prevent bone breakdown or osteoporosis. They are also helpful in controlling hot flashes, menopause, PMS and fibrocystic breasts tumors.  (Ladies- down some sprouts with your chocolate when Aunt Flo is near)

Alfalfa sprouts also have saponins.  Saponins lower the bad cholesterol, but not the good HDL fats.  Saponins also stimulate the immune system by increasing the activity of natural killer cells such as T- lymphocytes and interferon.

You can find sprouts in the produce section where the pre sliced/packaged veggies are.  Don't buy those.

Instead- Sprout your own!  (And save a butt load of money)

1.  Purchase a packet of alfalfa sprouting seeds at an organic market, farmers market or health food store.  I bought mine online.

2.  Place approximately 1 tsp. to 1.5 tsp. alfalfa seeds into a glass mason jar. Pour two or three inches of water directly over the seeds before covering the glass jar with a piece of cheesecloth. (I got the mason jar that came with the mesh netting) Secure the cheesecloth with a rubber band. Place the mason jar in a cool, dry location away from any direct sun. Ideally, the temperature should be 65 to 75 degrees.

3.  Allow the alfalfa seeds to soak overnight. The next day pour out the all of the water through the cheesecloth. Remove the cheesecloth and use a butter knife to gently stir the damp seeds in the jar. Fill the jar with clean water and swish the seeds around, drain.  Rotate jar around until seeds are dispersed evenly.  Set near a window with warm sunshine.

4.  Repeat this process of over four to six days. The seeds should begin sprouting within two to three days. You may notice small patches of seeds that have failed to sprout. Simply remove and discard them. By the fifth day place the mason jar in a sunny location for about 20 minutes. Doing so helps encourage the enzymes that make the sprouts nice and green.

Look!  It's like spermies!

5.  Harvest your sprouts on the fifth or sixth day. Remove the sprouts from the jar and place them in a clean glass or plastic container with a lid and refrigerate. Use the sprouts that you've grown in the next 24 to 36 hours. Discard any uneaten sprouts after that time.

Now put the little sprout spermies on your sandwich and enjoy!

Now...the winner of my Starbucks Giftcard Giveaway PLUS a cool eco cozy goes to..........

Number 18- Micah!  It's a boy!  

Micah, send me your addy and I'll send this to you.  


Kerri O said...

I never thought of growing my own sprouts, I might have to try this!

Micah said...

Mother. Of. Mercy.

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