Would you like to grow your own food? Do you have little space or limited light sources? Do you have time constraints? Would you like to save money? Do you feel like this is an infomercial? If you answered a combination of yes or no to any of these questions, then sprouting is for you.
This past summer, I had my first experience growing food. While gardening is not easy and you are not always successful, it is a most rewarding experience to eat food that you have grown with your own hands. As a realist, I recognize that not everyone has the time, patience, energy and/or space to grow their own food. This is why I highly recommend sprouting as the easiest form of growing food, ever!
This is all you need to get started for a crash course in sprouting:
- Mason Jar
- Cheesecloth/plastic/metal screen for the jar cover
- Seeds/beans/nuts preferably organic (buy at local garden or home improvement store, natural/health food store, seed catalogs, online - Sprout People, Seedsnow)
Note that each seed/bean/nut variety may have slightly different sprouting instructions; this is specifically for broccoli sprouts. I started with the package recommended 2 tablespoons of organic broccoli seeds soaking for 8 to 12 hours. After the initial soak, I rinsed the seeds in the jar and drained. It is recommended to store the jar in a bowl facing down to aid in continuous drainage to help avoid any mold developing.
You must repeat the rinse routine 2 to 3 times a day. Being a realist, I did this twice a day, in the morning and evening. You will then see them grow almost before you eyes, semi-instant gratification. Broccoli sprouts take between 4 and 6 days to sprout to a length of 1 to 2 inches.
Once the sprouts are ready to be harvested, soak the sprouts in a bowl of fresh cold water for a few minutes while separating the sprouts from any clumping. It is extemely important to dry the sprouts as much as possible before placing in the refrigerator since sprouts are susceptible to mold. You can use the jar to store the sprouts or a separate container so you can start another batch. Enjoy on salads, sandwiches, juices, sautes and anything else you can think of. Sprouts are the best bang for your nutritional buck. These types of sprouts are usually $1-2 per ounce at the farmers market and $3 for a 4 ounce package at my local Co-op food store. Based on the price of seeds, you can save a "sprout-ton" of money.
Water saving tip -- save the water from rinsing sprouts to water your plants.
Next up, I will review the Easy Sprouter from The Sprout People. This is touted as the easiest way to grow sprouts, I will be the judge of that.
Here is a useful how-to on Growing Sprouts in a Jar. Finally, I leave you with this helpful video on the various ways to grow sprouts. I hope that you will grow with GreenUp! Solutions:
Happy Sprouting -- GreenUp! Guy