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Generally Recognized As True: Growing sprouts in a jar (not the Brussels kind)

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Growing sprouts in a jar (not the Brussels kind)

Sprouts are essentially just the shoots of seeds -- many, many seeds. They're apparently very nutritious (probably with micronutrients -- the kinds of things we need most, having reduced our diets to a handful of industrially-farmed plants).

They're also very easy to grow. You don't need a garden, or even a spot outdoors to grow them. You don't even need soil! Further, you can grow them indoors all through the winter (some sprouts, like mung beans -- which produce beansprouts -- are negatively affected by exposure to light and you need to grow them in a cupboard).

So, I shall now outline the very simple procedure.

First, put a couple of tablespoons of seeds into a wide-mouth mason jar, cover them with water, and let them soak for a few hours.



Then, cover the top of the jar with cheesecloth and secure it with an elastic band around the mouth of the jar. You can now put water in the jar and drain it very easily without losing your sprout seeds.

Once you've done that, drain the jar and prop it upside down at a slight angle into a dish or something that can catch the water that will gradually drain out.

Now, all you have to do is -- twice a day -- put some water in the jar, swirl it around so that it comes into contact with the seeds, drain it well, and prop it upside down again until the next time.

After day 1, you will not see much action:



After day 3, you should see some real progress (I forgot to take a photo on day 2!)


And by day 4 (today, in my case), they are pretty much ready to eat -- on sandwiches, in salads, or just by themselves. By day 4, they are probably OK to leave the ones that you don't eat growing for a couple more days. But, beyond that, just stick them in an airtight container and store them in the fridge.


You can also grow them on paper towels by dampening a paper towel, scattering some seeds over the towel, and misting twice a day.

I got my most recent sprout seeds from a Canadian company called Mumm's. There are a number of different varieties for different flavours (the ones in the pictures above are the "Broccoli Brassica Blend"), and you can get some that have a naturally spicy or hot bias.

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