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How to sprout grains and seeds to make salad

22/11/2017 - 1 Comments - Recipes | Warm weather, Chickpeas, Salad, Sunflower seeds


Right now, while Summer heat is approaching, plants grow, leavens bubble, schedules become tight. Our minds are so full, all one asks for is refreshment – a breath of life.
A great way to deal is drinking plenty of water (and some beer once in a while ;). Another way is to go all out into salads with sprouted grains and seeds.

In the germination process, seeds and grains let out all of the energy they have stored, in the intention of nourishing the new plant that is coming to life. So, besides having more nutrients available at this point, they are more easily digested and absorbed.
Along with root, fruit, and leafy vegetables and a good sauce, we can quench hunger in a light and practical way. This salad is great on lunchboxes and hurried days in general. Check out how to do it!

The first step is to choose which seed or grain to sprout. We should eat the ones that are already sold as edible, and never the kinds of seeds sold for cultivating purposes (because this second group, most often than not, is treated with pesticides and fertilizers, which are harmful). Theoretically, every edible seed and grain can be consumed in this way, though some, such as beans and corn, are not as tasty.

In the video I made about this, I have sprouted chickpeas, which are not so pleasant if eaten 100% raw. But briefly heating them is enough to transform them into a delicious meal. Watch it >>

I have prepared and enjoyed very much: lentils, peas (including split peas), sesame, whole oats, whole barley, whole wheat, sunflower seeds (shelled).
In order to have a nice germination, besides the seeds I need a large glass jar, a colander or dish drainer, a piece of clean fabric (voile, a thin sheer kind of fabric, is the best option), and a rubber band.

I place the seeds in the glass jar and add enough cold water to cover them, plus an equal amount (because the seeds swell in water, doubling their initial volume). I cover the jar opening with the voile and secure it in place using the rubber band, so that no insects or dust fall in. I leave them to soak like this for approximately 8 hours. It is ok if the soak lasts a bit longer or shorter.
The glass must be kept from direct sunlight or other  source of intense heat (for example, it should not be too close to an oven or stove).

While soaking, seeds will hydrate and swell, starting the germination process. After 8 hours, I drain them (Attention! If you like plants, do not throw away this water, set it aside. I have a hint at the end of the post).
I rinse the seeds with fresh water, drain again, and place the glass upside down on top of a dish drainer or colander, to prevent excess water from accumulating.


From there, I repeat the rinse and drain process when the day starts and ends, until tiny leaves start to show (that’s the ideal way to eat sprouts).
Just prior to showing defined leaves or a tiny sprig, a “nose” appears – that’s how I name the delicate stem that shows first.


I can consume the seeds immediately, or else store them in the refrigerator in an airtight jar for about 3 days. In order to preserv better, I place a paper or fabric napkin on top of the sprouts before lidding the jar, to make sure there will not be excess umidity. More details about this hint on my post on how I wash salad.

And how to consume those?
In cool or warm salads, which might be the main course or side dish in a meal, or as sandwich filling.
Cool salad example: sprouted lentils, thinly sliced red cabbage, shreded carrots, diced cucumbers and onions, chopped Brazil nuts, chopped parsley, olive oil, lemon, salt. Nice, right?
Warm salad example: I sauté garlic, fresh turmeric root and onions, tomatos, carrots, add the sprouted chickpeas, season with soy sauce and olive oil. Done!

PS: the seeds that form mucilage (gel) when hydrated, such as flaxseeds, chia and psyllium, have to be rinsed many more times throughout the day, and consumed soon, so that the excess umidity don’t make them rotten.

PPS: For you plant lovers out there, a hint! The water from the first soak, specially when sprouting legumes, may be used as a rooting liquid when making seedlings from sticks. This occurs because of the nutrients and enzymes freed by the seeds in the so called “break of dormancy” period. That’s when seeds “awake” from hibernation to sprout. This water is also great for gardens and potted plants.

Let me know in the comments: how do you refresh Summer days?
Until the next post, I’m on facebook and instagram. Join me in there!
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23/11/2017 09:15:34

Sandra

Comment
Muito interessante! Quantas possibilidades e alternativas para a alimentação! Gosto muito da forma clara e simples com que explicas o processo, sendo ao mesmo tempo bastante explicativa e com informações úteis, instrutivas e que instigam a curiosidade para saber mais. Eu diria que teu texto é assim, uma salada! É simples, refrescante, deliciosa e com camadas de sabor!

Response from Flora
Sandra, querida! Ganho o dia com esse comentário! Muito obrigada :) Volta sempre. Beijos!

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