We will begin with Category 1 – Biogenic Foods. These foods contain the perfect nutrition to create new cells. They are Sprouts and Baby Greens.
Sprouting – Fun ‘N’ Easy
Sprouts are fun and easy to grow in your own kitchen. When shopping at any Health Food Store you will find the bulk aisle loaded with seeds, beans, grains, legumes, and nuts.
Let’s get this party started with 1 cup each of…
- Mung beans
- Red winter wheat berries
- Green lentils
- Raw almonds
or whatever looks good to you.
For simplicity’s sake find three 1 quart mason jars, cheesecloth to cover the opening with rubber bands to hold. Or, purchase three sprouting lids (well worth the money).
Amazingly you now have all required ingredients for sprouting.
At home in your kitchen pour enough mung beans into one of the jars until there is one layer of seeds in the bottom. Fill the jar ¾ with water, cover with cheesecloth held with a rubber band (or sprouting lid) and set aside. Do the same with the wheat berries, and green lentils. Let soak overnight. In any container soak 1 cup raw almonds overnight.
The next morning pour off the water (I pour the soak and rinse water into a container and water outside plants with it. You know the wise adage, “Waste not, want not”). Fill the jar half-way with fresh water, swirl around rinsing the seeds. Pour off, and repeat. Repeat with other jars.
Water Out, Air In
Find a place where you can turn the jars upside down at around forty-five degrees or so. The object is to let air in and water out of the jar (a dish drainer works great, or even a bowl). Yes, water will be coming out so control with a cookie sheet, pot, towel, whatever.
Now that the jars are upside down (water out, air in), cover with a dish towel. The seeds require darkness to begin sprouting. Rinse morning and evening for three to six days depending on the seed.
Plump and Juicy
When the sprouts are plump and juicy add to salad, or eat alone, or use in any other recipe you have come across. Oh yeah, give yourself a pat on the belly for a job well done.
It won’t be long until you have a dozen or two jars going at once. Rye and soft wheat as the base for dehydrating crackers. Chickpeas for sun-dried tomato hummus. You will find yourself creating all kinds of fantastic melodies of foods never before seen or tasted.
Nutritious, Delicious Beverages
Take the cup of almonds that have soaked overnight and rinse once. Place in a blender and add three or four cups of water (Some like one cup of almonds to two cups water. Play with the ratio until you find what you like). Blend on high for a few minutes. Strain the pulp reserving for making crackers. Chill the newly created almond milk. Add a few drops of vanilla extract or sweeten with honey, agave, etc. to taste and wha-la you have made a nutritious, delicious beverage.
Another easy to make nutritious beverage is made by placing a dozen or so wheat berries in a quart-sized glass jar, fill with water, cover with cheesecloth or sprouting lid. Let stand at room temperature for a day or two until the water is cloudy and foamy bubbles appear on the surface of the water. Pour off the water into a clean container and refrigerate. Toss seeds into the compost. You have now made another highly nutritious, fermented, refreshing beverage.
Both the almond milk and wheat berry drink are alive with nutrients and will want to be consumed within a couple of days lest they spoil.
Baby, Baby ‘O’ Baby Greens
Even easier than sprouting is growing baby greens around your house. Baby greens can easily be grown wherever light comes through a window. Some are okay with indirect light. Keeping the soil moist is all that is required.
Place rich organic soil in a six-inch deep, twelve-inch diameter, or similar dimension pot (no weep holes). Then add twenty cloves of garlic, or four or five beets, or turnip roots, carrots, fennel, shallots, etc. Keep moist, and in a few weeks when the greens have grown to around seven inches snip off individual greens allowing smaller ones to continue growing. Add to your salad.
You will find your roots continue to produce for several weeks. When they finally give up the ghost, add the spent roots and soil to your compost and replace with fresh.
Also, an indoor garden will want to include a variety of herbs such as curled parsley (A big ol’ handful in every salad. Packed full of high-quality nutrition), cilantro, basil, oregano, thyme, etc. Seriously simple and fun to grow, harvest, and eat with joy.
The joy you will feel from growing salad greens indoor, filling your belly with perfect nutrition for new cell growth cannot be overvalued. Think of it, no pesticides, no herbicides, no preservatives. No packaging, ink, advertisements, or garbage to haul to the dump. Only fresh, vibrant, new life being nurtured by your own hands in your own home. Simple, easy, and fun.
Join us for more fun exploring Category 2 – Bioactive Food where we discover the tools needed in our kitchen to prepare the FVSNGL in our next article, Eating Clean Food List.
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