Red and Brown lentils
Sprouts are crisp and nutritious. Even the apartment dweller, who longs to garden, can grow their own fresh sprouts all year round. Although, there are special kits available for sprouting, a wide mouth quart jar, a gauze pad and a rubber band are all you need.
For a fraction of what it costs to buy sprouts at the store, you can grow your own. Here’s how:
To make a quart of sprouts: simply put 1/2 cup of any seed or one cup of any bean mentioned above in an empty, clean, wide mouth quart jar. Cover them with water. Attach the gauze pad to the top of the jar with a rubber band. Drain the water. Rinse the seeds twice daily for 2-4 days. (Give the rinse water to house or garden plants.) Keep the jars in a dark place, such as underneath the sink or in a kitchen cabinet. Red lentils sprout tails 1/8-1/2 inch long. Other seed and bean sprouts have longer tails: 1/2-1 1/2 inches long.
Alfalfa, radish, clover, and wheat sprouts will turn green if you leave them in the sunlight for an hour after sprouting. Store sprouts in the refrigerate for a few days in their sprouting jars with the gauze pad on top. Sprouts are delicious in sandwiches. Garnish or mix them into any salad.
Alfalfa and clover sprouts are mild flavored and popular. Ready in 3-4 days, serve them in salads and sandwiches.
Radish sprouts taste like radishes. They, too take 3-4 days to harvest.
Red and brown lentils have a peppery flavor that can spice up any salad. Brown lentil sprouts need 3-4 days of rinsing, but red lentils are quicker. They are ready in 1-2 days. These crispy sprouts are also great as a garnish for soups.
Mung bean sprouts sometimes lose their green covers when sprouted. In 3-4 days, they are ready to go into Chinese stir fries, soups, salads and sandwiches. They taste a little like string beans.
Sprouted whole peas taste like peas. They are ready to harvest in 3 days. Add them to salads or stir fries.
Wheat berries become sweet and chewy when sprouted. They, too take 3-4 days to harvest and are a welcome addition to salads, sandwiches, and breads.
Sprout Sunflower seeds with their shells on. After 3-4 days they break out of their shells and are ready to be eat or bake into muffins. They taste a little like a crunchy artichoke heart.
Originally published in The Quick and Easy Organic Gourmet by Leslie Cerier Copyright 1996. All right reserved to Leslie Cerier.