With the Coronavirus, people are thinking of smart ways to have fresh food in the house without rushing to the grocery store as often as normal.
Sprouts are great for your health. They are packed with protein, minerals, vitamins, trace elements and enzymes.
There are special seed sprouters available, normally at garden or health stores, but you can very easily sprout seeds using jars.
So far, my favourite seeds to sprout are lentils and mung beans. The image below shows my seeds in the various stages of growth.
Prep your jars
- You can use any jar for your sprouting, but the best ones are normally those which are reasonably large and round. My first choice jars are big coffee jars.
- Clean your jars as well as what you can, either putting them in the dishwasher or washing by hand rinsing them out with boiling water and soap.
- If you have mesh available, sterilise it with hot water and soap. The mesh is important to allow air to circulate and allow easy drainage of water. I used a clean hair tie to secure the mesh to the top of the jar.
- If you don’t have a mesh available, no worries. You don’t need one. Just leave the jar open.
Day 1: Soak your seeds in water
- Once you have prepared your jars, depending on the size of your jar, add about a heaped tablespoon of seeds into the jar.
- Fill the jar with water and leave overnight.
Day 2: Drain your seeds and rinse them twice
- Once the seeds have rested overnight in water, the next morning drain the water. If you have the mesh it is easy, just tip the jar upside down to drain the water, refill the jar, drain, refill, drain.
- If you don’t have the mesh, tip the seeds into a strainer to drain the water out and rinse them under the tap for a few seconds. Pop the seeds back in the jar.
- When the seed jars are drained of water, lay the jar on its side with the seeds as spread out as possible.
- Leave overnight.
Day 3: Repeat step 3
- Rinse and drain your seeds again and leave overnight, leaving the jar empty of water and on its side.
Day 4: Dry your sprouts and store them
- Today your sprouts should have some lovely growth and should be soft with a little crunch to eat.
- Give them a rinse, drain them and spread them out on a clean kitchen towel.
- Try to find all the seeds which didn’t sprout. You’ll be able to find them easily, identifying them as the small and hard seeds. Throw those away. You really don’t want to bite into those.
- You can leave the shells of the seeds with the sprouts, they are soft to eat and are packed with fibre.
- Pat the sprouts dry with the kitchen towel and put them in a container in the fridge.
- They will last a few days in the fridge.
As you can see in the photograph, I normally prepare a few jars so that I have enough every day.
If you are struggling to see how this can be added to your diet, they can be added to a host of different meals! Sprouts don’t have to exclusively be salad food. For lunch, I might add them to a sandwich or add some to the top of a biscuit with hummus. For dinner, I’ll add about a cup of them with my food. They really go with most meals.