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Sprouts: Home Grown Veggie Protein Power

 

Well isn't that video a blast from the past? Filmed nearly two years ago over a few days  in my old kitchen with my un-sun-bleached hair, with plenty of morning-meghan-face to giggle at. This video has nearly hit the 10,000 views milestone and so I thought I would share it once again here as it is really pretty straightforward in terms of how easy it is to sprout your own sprouts.

I wanted to go through how we can all make, in our very own kitchens, an amazing source of plant-based protein. Sprouts are a staple in my fridge and they should be in yours too. Cheap, cheerful and wonderfully easy! Sprouting magnifies the nutritional value of the seed that you are sprouting. It boosts the B-vitamin content, triples the amount of vitamin A and increases vitamin C by a factor of 5 to 6 times.

Here are some goodies about specific types of sprouts:

  • Alfalfa Sprouts: Rich in phytochemicals, protect against cancer, heart disease, osteoporosis and fibrocystic breast disease. They stimulate natural killer cell activity, which strengthens the immune system. Beneficial in reducing symptoms of PMS and menopause, including hot flashes. They contain high concentrations of antioxidants, the body's defense against the destruction of DNA which is the cause of aging. Alfalfa sprouts are abundant sources of vitamins A, B, C, E and K, the minerals calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium and zinc. Also carotene, chlorophyll, amino acids and trace elements. They contain 35% protein.
  • Broccoli Sprouts: Abound with the amazing cancer-fighting phytochemical, sulforaphane. Research studies have shown that they contain 50 times more sulforpohane than fresh broccoli. What's more, they contain glucosinolates and isothiocyanates, substances that protect cells from becoming malignant, at 10-100 times greater levels than in fresh broccoli. They are sources of plant estrogens, similar to human estrogen, and so are helpful in cases of PMS, menopause, hot flashes and fibrocystic disease. Nutrient dense, they are rich sources of vitamins A, B, C, E and K, anti-oxidants, the minerals calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium and zinc. Also carotene, chlorophyll, amino acids, trace elements and antioxidants. Broccoli sprouts contain as much as 35% protein.
  • Garbanzo beans, also known as chickpeas, can be sprouted to make delightfully delicious hummus. It is much richer in nutrients than hummus typically made from cooked chickpeas. They can also be used in salads, soups or stir fried or steamed with other bean sprouts and vegetables. These sprouts are plentiful sources of vitamins A, C and E, the minerals iron, calcium, magnesium and amino acids. They contain 20% protein.
  • Pea Sprouts:  Rich sources of vitamins A, B, C and E, all the essential amino acids, the minerals calcium, iron and phosphorus. They contain 26% protein.
  • Lentil Sprouts: Rich in vitamins A, B, C and E, the minerals iron, calcium and phosphorus. They contain 26% protein.
  • Mung Bean Sprouts: Abundant in vitamins A, B, C and E, the minerals iron, potassium, calcium and magnesium, and amino acids, they contain 20% protein.
  • Red Clover Sprouts: Rich in phytochemicals, in particular genistein, which is known to prevent the formation of new blood vessels inside a tumor, in essence starving the tumor, it is protective against diseases like cancer. Red clover contains naturally occurring plant estrogens, similar to human estrogen, so they are helpful with PMS, menopause, hot flashes and fibrocystic disease.  They contain vitamins A, B, C, E and K, the minerals calcium, magnesium, potassium, iron, phosphorus and zinc, trace minerals, carotene, chlorophyll and amino acids. They contain 26% protein.

Sprouting Advantages

  • Enzymes are activated- necessary for food digestion
  • Proteins convert to free amino acids- building blocks of our bodies
  • Starches change to simple sugars.
  • Minerals combine to increase assimilation.
  • Vitamin content increases from 3 to 12 or more times.
  • Chlorophyll and carotene content increase dramatically when exposed to sunlight.
  • Home-grown sprouts are cheap cheap cheap

What You Need

  • Mason jar
  • My Nut Sack or Cheese Cloth (available at health foods stores and hardware stores)
  • Elastic band or metal ring from jar
  • Drainage container (dish rack works well)
  • Seed /Lentil of choice
  • Food grade hydrogen peroxide (optional)

Sprouting 101

  • Add 1-2 Tbs of seeds to the jar (more or less depending on the size of the jar- they will expand quite a bit
  • Fill jar with water- making sure all beans/seeds are covered
  • Stretch mesh or cheese cloth over the jar and secure with rubber band or ring from jar li
  • Allow to sit like this for 12-24 hours
  • After elapsed time, drain out the water and then rinse the seeds
  • Turn jar upside down in dish/drain rack. Try and lean it at 45 degree angle so that water can drain but air still circulates.
  • Rinse your sproutlings twice a day. Each time you rinse them, rinse several times, then leave to drain. If using food grade hydrogen peroxide- add 1/2 tsp to water and let sit for 5 minutes and then rinse several times. This helps prevent mould growth
  • When ready, keep sprouts refrigerated & rinse daily

Note: Cooking time can be lessened & nutritional content increased by soaking buckwheat, rice, corn or wheat (12 to 24 hours should be enough time)

The Easy Sprouting Method For Beans, Lentils and Peas

  • Soak bean/seed of choice overnight (I like lentils, chickpeas, mung beans)
  • Rinse thoroughly in a sieve
  • Leave bean of choice in the sieve over a bowl
  • Rinse beans/seeds twice per day, once in the morning, once in the evening and cover with a towel
  • Watch them sprout away!

If you have a fine enough sieve you can use regular sprouting seeds too, like broccoli, alfala or my fave sandwich booster. Chances are you have a sieve in your kitchen so that makes this method easy peezy.

77 Responses to “Sprouts: Home Grown Veggie Protein Power”

  1. Claire C said…
    I've never seen a sprouter like that before!I wonder what the Red Clover sprouts would taste like:-)cc
  2. Nancy said…
    I've only ever had alfalfa sprouts, and now I want them all! Honestly, I had no idea you could sprout your own that easily. Sprouter or not, I'm ready for adventures in sprouting! (Though how lovely it would be with a home sprouter...) Great contest!! For my entries, I've done the following: # Head on over to my Fan Page and tell me what you’re fave source of veggie protein is. # Follow me on Twitter # ‘Like’ the Hometown Seeds Fan Page # Click ‘Like’ on my Fan Page
  3. melanie said…
    you've got me intrigued! it looks so easy and would be a great way to get some more fresh, local, nutrients into my food. have you had any encounters with mold when sprouting? a friend of mine said she tried a few times and got mold each time. maybe it was the seeds she used?
  4. Millie said…
    I'm so excited to try to start sprouting very, very soon. Thanks for the guides! : )
  5. GKD said…
    I've tried about five times now to sprout in a glass jar and, except for one time, keep ending up with mold in the sprouts. I followed the directions exactly and it still comes out awful. I'm hoping a machine like this one makes it idiot proof for people like me. The one time it did work, they tasted amazing! Thanks for introducing sprouts into my diet in your Green Smoothie Cleanse (its one of my favorite books that I keep referring to)!
  6. Jennifer R. said…
    I would love to win this since sprouting is something I wanted to start doing. Thanks Meghan!!
  7. Jennifer R. said…
    I follow you on Twitter :)
  8. Jennifer R. said…
    I "like" your fan page on fb.
  9. Jennifer R. said…
    I "liked" the Hometown Seeds on fb.
  10. elain said…
    I have had these three level sprouters off and on for many years and I love it. It's so simple to use. I just change the water every morning, and by day three or four I have yummy sprouts.. i tend to mix a few different sprouts in each level, and to start, I fill one level a day over three days, so they sprout sequentially, and there is always fresh sprouts

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