Monday, March 19, 2012

A How-To on Growing Sprouts

Growing and eating your own vegetables has come back to life, and at no better time. What's not to like about going out to your garden and picking a basketful of veggies for a stir fry meal? How can you resist a stroll around your garden, smiling, remembering how much fun you had playing in the dirt? And what did playing in the dirt get you? Healthier!! Yummy, flavorful food loaded with vitamins, nutrients, and best of all- no chemicals!

In many places, it's too early to get out and plant. I know the feeling of wanting to go out and will those seeds to grow. You can picture the plant loaded with produce, can't you? You gaze down the row of fresh turned soil, willing those little seeds to pop through and give you what you've been drooling for all winter. Right?

Well, if it's too cold to plant outside, try growing some green inside!

When you just have to have some green, there's nothing better than sprouts to help curb that craving. There are many kinds to choose from and you've probably had them at least once in your life. Here's a simple little tutorial on growing your own.

You will need:
a wide mouth quart glass jar (you want to get them OUT when they're done)
a square of nylon stocking to cover the open end
a large, strong rubber band
sprout seeds
clean, fresh water

Make sure your glass jar is very clean: rinse it out with very hot water and let it air dry. Next, add two level teaspoons of sprout seeds and about a cup of room temperature water. Cover the open end of the jar with your nylon square, holding it down with the rubber band. I use the stocking piece because the seeds have less of a tendency to stick to it. You'll understand why in a minute.
Pull the stocking piece taut, making sure the rubber band won't come off accidentally. Let the water and seeds sit together for about an hour or so. There is no exact time to this step, but the seeds don't need to sit in the water for a long time, just enough to get them started.
Next, tilt your jar carefully, emptying almost every drop of water out. That little bit of water will keep the seeds from drying out and stopping the germination process. Now, lay the jar on its side on a clean paper towel or cloth, making sure to keep it out of the sun. Your counter top or a shelf will do nicely.

For the next three to five days, rinse your seeds with fresh, clean water two to three times a day, laying your jar back down on its side after you have drained the water out. If the seeds bunch up near the nylon, gently tap them back into the jar. They need space to grow and air to breath!

If you find different types of sprout seeds, you can mix them together at the start of the process of sprouting, and if you are familiar with sprouts, you know they are great everywhere and on just about everything! My favorite is a tuna sandwich on toasted marble bread, with a huge splash of sprouts inside!

This post is the first of many that I hope to be writing in the future, to pass along  my experience in living as healthy as possible. Did you like this post? Any thoughts or suggestions? Pass them on in the comment section below!!



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