As we come into April we have already seen new buds pushing through, daffodils in all their golden glory and snow drops sparkling through snow covered ground. So today we’re going to focus on seeds and sprouts in our food. I’ll be honest, that before deciding to write this post, I had never tried sprouting myself but have always loved eating them and how they make my body feel. Since then, I’ve got 4 different jars on the go! They are literally a powerhouse of super nutrients and enzymes utterly exuding energy and health. All that goodness and energy movement is transferred to us when we eat them.

Sprouting is a great, simple, cost effective and fun! It’s a great way to add more vitamins and minerals to your diet all year round as you can grow them on any budget and any season.  Here is some info on the ‘King of sprouts’ but there are so many more to try such as sunflower seeds, radish, fenugreek, lentil, chickpea, peas and mung bean. In fact, any bean you can think of!

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DSC_0638

Alfalfa

This is the most nutrient rich sprout around with a list of goodies as long as my arm, including iron, calcium, magnesium, potassium, phosphorous, sodium, sulphur, silicon, cobalt and zinc. They are also protein rich, have as much carotene as carrots and 8 enzymes that help to digest your food. This is a great snack for weight loss because the fibre and protein they contain help create a sensation of fullness, which reduces snacking. They also help fight cancer, tumours, leukaemia, and cardiovascular disease including high blood pressure. They are best eaten after three days of sprouting or after the first leaf division.

Make your own sprouting jar

Use an old pickle jar you’ve stashed away and pierce a few holes into the lid using a nail and hammer for drainage. With smaller seeds like alfalfa you will have to use muslin cloth tied onto the neck of the jar with an elastic band so as not to lose the seeds through the holes.

Start sprouting

  1. Start off by filling a sixth of your sprouting jar with your choice of seed or bean and covering them in water over night for at least 12 hours.  They will expand a lot as they grow so you want to give them enough space.
  2. Rinse them the following day with fresh water and drain by leaving the jar upside down (not in direct sunlight).
  3. Rinse them daily and don’t let them dry out.
  4. Rinse with fresh water before serving. Most sprouts will take 3-4 days. I’d recommend Blender Girl for a chart on sprouting times.

To preserve the enzymes and nutrients in sprouts, they’re best eaten raw but can be tossed into stir fry’s and soups at the very last moment. I hope you will have as much fun as I did with my new hobby and enjoy the flavours and benefits of this amazing little super food.

Let us see your sprouting creations through Twitter, Instagram and Facebook

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736618_10151425097506412_191111065_o

By Amber Petersen from amberskettle.com

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