Seeds for sprouting purposes make essential supplies for survivalists' pantries, and keeping your seeds fresh causes no economic hardship because you can rotate these seeds and use them for everyday cooking. You need not fear waiting for crops to grow to get needed vitamins and nutrients should the unthinkable occur because sprouts grow in just a few days. By rotating your stock and adding sprouts to your diet, you can enjoy a more nutritious diet, eat them raw or cooked, and the variety allows you to compose fabulous dishes that look as good as they taste. The nutritional value of sprouts exceeds the vitamin profile of mature plants and vegetables, so you enjoy many advantages by adding sprouting seeds to your daily diet.
What is Sprouting?
Sprouting refers to germinating seeds into shoots, which you can easily do at home with minimal trouble. Sprouting allows you to enjoy fresh vegetables year-round, and you have enough choices to find flavors you really appreciate. Simply soaking seeds and allowing them to germinate in a covered glass jar or commercial sprouting device begins the miracle of renewed life. Seeds and young sprouts need regular rinsing to prevent them from turning sour, and you must consume them before leaves start to grow. Plants allowed to grow foliage become baby salad greens, and offer more food choices for committed survivalists.
You can sprout any viable seeds, but mishandling of seeds or the sprouting process causes bacterial growth, making sprouts unsafe for raw consumption. Sprouts from some plants have toxins that make them unfit for eating either raw or cooked. You cannot eat sprouts from members of the solanacae family such as tomatoes, potatoes, paprika, and eggplants. Manufacturers treat seeds intended for crops with chemicals, and some countries require heat-treatment of edible seeds, so consumers should choose seeds intended for sprouting purposes for safety.
How to Begin
Germination takes a few days at home, and you begin by rinsing seeds to remove any traces of soil or contaminants. Soak the seeds in water for the recommended time, which ranges from 20 minutes up to 12 hours. Soaking allows water to penetrate the seed husk and activate the baby plant. Some seeds only need moistening instead of soaking. After soaking, place seeds in a container; glass jars work well, and a simple colander works perfectly to sprout lentils. Commercial sprouters often have many levels that allow you to grow different sprouts in one convenient vessel.
- Rinse sprouts two to four times daily, depending on seed type, climate, and seed-producer instructions.
- Sprouts grow quickly, and you eat them in three to five days.
- Refrigeration slows or halts the growing process until you can use your supply for regular meals.
- Consider staggering your sprout choices because this technique allows you to keep a sustainable supply of each type.
- You can sprout whole-grain oats, but dehulled grains will not sprout including oat groats sold in health-food stores.
- Sunlight causes some sprouts to dry out if left in the sun too long. Sprouting seeds in the dark causes them to develop crisp textures and pale-white colors. People often sprout beans under darkened conditions for Asian stir-fry dishes.
- You can apply pressure to sprouts by adding weights, which causes them to grow larger and crunchier.
Common Germination Problems
You might face the following problems when growing sprouts.
- Failing to rinse and drain seeds properly or soaking them too long might cause seeds to sour.
- Dirty sprouting vessels could cause bacterial growth.
- Contaminated water supplies or insufficient airflow might make sprouts inedible.
- Temperature recommendations vary for different sprout types, and you must remember to rinse sprouts as often as recommended.
Enjoy Astonishing Dietary Benefits
Popular sprout choices include the following seeds:
- Mustard greens
- Sunflower seeds
- Green peas
- Garbanzo beans
- Green lentils
- Mung beans
Sprouts have been staples of many cuisines and cultures for over 5000 years. One pound of seeds grow up to five pounds of sprouts, and they mature quickly to give your family sustenance. Children and adults can easily grow these plants, and survivalists can keep well-stocked pantries with seeds they can easily rotate to keep them fresh and viable.