Thursday, June 25, 2009

Sprouting!

Something I've been meaning to try for awhile now is sprouting. Since we have made a decision to eat local and seasonal whenever possible, I wanted something live that I could supplement our diets with in the winter, when the ground has long frozen. Sprouts are also delicious all year long. :)

I decided to start with the basics: Alfalfa Sprouts and Bean Sprouts (from Mung Beans). I went to our local health food store and bought a bag of organic alfalfa seeds and organic mung beans. Total cost: $6.33. This should yield SEVERAL jars of sprouts, as you only need about 2 tablespoons in the jar. And buying sprouts at the grocery store is very expensive, and they're not as fresh. Also, we have no idea where these sprouts came from. At least in my own kitchen I know what kind of conditions they were grown in. I used mason jars that I had on hand, cut the feet out of a pair of (clean) nylons to put over the top, and attached them with the rubber bands that come on our broccoli bunches (I always save these thinking I can use them for SOMETHING...). The first day, you soak the beans and seeds in water, for about 8-12 hours. Then twice a day after that, you rinse them and let them drain out. If you can see in the picture, after just over a day, the beans have already begun to sprout! How exciting. It takes a few days for the sprouting to complete, and then you place them in sunlight for a few minutes to get them to green up. Then you refrigerate them. The kids love watching our "science experiment". I can't wait to have fresh bean sprouts in our stir-fry, and crunchy alfalfa sprouts on our chick-pea salad sandwiches. YUMMY!

Oh, the funny circular thing in the picture... that's a coaster I made out of my leftover cotton yarn. :) I wanted to use it up, and also wanted to practice crocheting in the round. I just kept going until I ran out of yarn. I blocked it to flatten it out, which is why it's sitting on the dishtowel along with the sprouts. :)

5 comments:

  1. Very nice - both the sprouts and the crocheting. I have been wanting to try sprouting for a long, long time. I just have never gotten around to it. Maybe I will look for some seeds next time I hit the store. And as for the crocheting...I have learned a couple times, but it has never stuck. My daughter is still a wee bit young, but I want to make sure by the time she has the dexterity to crochet I am proficient enough at it myself to teach her. I wish I would have known how growing up!

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  2. Oh yeah, and I think make dish towels is the perfect first project. It isn't too big or overwhelming and it is actually functional. And if it isn't perfect, who cares. The first thing I made was a scarf, which turned out decently, except I wasn't always the best at counting my stitches so it is, umm, rather wavy?

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  3. Hey Kelly,
    I know what you mean. My grandmother was a beautiful crocheter/knitter. I seem to remember her trying to teach me as a little girl but of course I wasn't interested then. And now that I'm dying to learn this stuff, she is no longer with us to pass on her wisdom. Isn't that always the way?

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  4. Those look so yummy! I love making sprouts, but get kindof tired of egg and tuna salad sandwiches. Would love to hear how you make chickpea salad!

    And your coaster looks great! I find that my sprouts stain whatever I have them draining on. I should make a couple of sprout dedicated coasters, and then I wouldn't have to wreck another towel!

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  5. Hey Jen,
    Ya, I didn't realize the tea towel would get stained from the sprouts - had I thought of it I would have used an old one. The coasters are a great idea! I hadn't thought of using them for that. lol.

    For chickpea salad sandwiches, just do it the same way you would do chicken salad or tuna salad. I use canned chickpeas, mostly because it's usually a last-minute lunch if there are no leftovers to eat. If you planned ahead you could use dried. Anyway, rinse and drain the chickpeas, and mash them up with the fork. I add enough mayo to get a nice consistency. I like to add in some chopped celery or green onion if I have it, and salt and pepper. It's delicious on toast with some nice crisp lettuce (or sprouts!).

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