These little sprouts are so darn cute. I get so excited when the legumes/nuts/beans/seeds grow little tails and wake up. For so long I ate these foods without preparing them properly enough for my body to digest them, and knowing the techniques is like learning the music truck sells ice cream.
I’m so in love with their little tails. And I am fascinated by their quick cook time once I have spent dedication and love for two to three days, watering and rinsing two to three times (depending on the specific legume/nut/bean/seed). I am completely dedicated to dedication. I admire this loyalty in people and find myself very happily rewarded when I contend the struggles of time and effort, especially in my kitchen, and specifically today with lentil sprouts.
Now, are you curious why sprouting is good for you? Sally Fallon and Mary Enig describe these very scientific and very traditional reasons and methods in this article. They also have a frequently asked questions-about-grains article which I also recommend reading if you’re so inclined. This information changed my life. It all started with raw milk. I’ll tell you the whole story one of these days. Suffice it to say I used to eat a lot of processed foods, and even, for years abstained from eating meat by choice. My coming to life via whole foods and traditional nourishing preparation has been a catalyst for change in the most rewarding of ways. I also love being in my kitchen. I get excited when things are alive (fermented, cultured, and sprouted, oh my)! So, do you want to learn about how I sprouted my lentils and made white (soaked) bean and lentil salad?
I started last year by cutting a metal screen to fit inside the screw top wide mouth lid of a mason jar. Then using the quart size wide mouth jar, I soaked the lentils overnight (more like 12 hours) in warm water. Once I woke up, excited to see if any change occurred (it didn’t, yet), I drained the water (just poured it on out, that screen is awesome and makes the process utterly simple) and rinsed them with water again. Then I poured off the water and placed the jar on a slant (screened lid facing down) in a bowl to allow the legumes to drain, leaving enough space for them to aerate (so, I gently poured off the water, as to leave the lentils along the bottom side of the slant of the jar instead of forcing them all to the screen with a heavy jolt).
I’m really excited about them, and I won’t tell you how many times I checked them for tails the first day–every single time I get to sprouting, no matter how many times I do it. But, I will tell you that you should rinse your sprouts a few times a day (two or three for lentils). It should take two or three days. These lentils took two and when their little tails started growing I started falling in love. I think I’d be a romantic-save-the-animals-lose-my-job-type scientist because, howbeit I hate rats on the farm, I know I’d love them in a lab. But in sprouting, you can love them and eat them (I don’t want to eat rats, scientist or not). I loved them, and I loved them again. Here’s how I loved them in the latter:
I had simultaneously been soaking (and pouring off the soak water once or twice) these lovely white beans from Lonely Mountain Farm (for about 19 hours) that I bought in autumn last year. When I began to cook them, I boiled and then skimmed the scum foam that rose up. I added several cloves of garlic, mashed and diced. I reduced heat to a simmer. Three hours into the simmer, I poured off the water and added new water and continued to simmer on low. I added kombu (to help break down the phytic acid and eliminate flatulation) half way through the process (6 hours of simmering with a lid). I love careful preparation. I also know that the weekend is a good time for this preparation because Cody plays with Willa; I made extra; meal planning in its finest, y’all.
Once the beans were ready I put them in a bowl, seasoned to taste with salt and pepper. When I began to stir them, I realized they were mashing in potato-esque fashion and lookin’ southern as all get up. My mind–inspired and on fire!–added ingredients faster than I could chop. I was living in the moment so much that I forgot about telling you about it with visual stimulation. Thus, I do not have many photos to bring to you, but I will work on remembering my camera in some very important white bean lentil situations, next time.
I decided (shooting from the hip) that it would be delicious to add
chopped sauerkraut (curry and cauliflower flavor)
before adding the sprouted (lightly cooked) lentils.
A smidge more pepper.
On the other side? Brown rice. Main dish? Coconut chicken made by my friend Maleah (she used coconut and almond meal, which I’m trying soon!). It turned out so delicious. A perfect Sunday Supper.
While we’re speaking of Sunday Supper, I want to tell you about a new idea my mother-in-love had for Glitter & Grit: a feature called “Let’s Bring Back” where I tell you the beautiful memories from the days of yore which I intend to bring back, one embroidered handkerchief at a time. What do you want to see brought back from yesteryear, reader?
It is Monday, and I hope you are diving into the week with dedication. What are you dedicated to this week? I’m actually sprouting sunflower seeds now. I’ll report back!