Germinating seeds at home (1º part)

Various germinated seeds

Various germinated seeds

On the 15-16 March a meeting for the exchange of local seeds was held at the Bizitoki country house hotel in the beautiful province of Baxe Nafarroa (Pyrénées-Atlantiques) which we attended with great interest.

At this meeting two open workshops were held . The first was on ” Sprouts” for food use and the second on the “Use of the acorn in human nutrition”.

In this article we want to share what we´ve learned at the workshop on homemade germination because we believe that is an interesting resource, also integrated into the world of natural vegetable milks.

Why eat sprouts ?

The objective is to increase the nutritional potential of the seeds through germination. When germination of any seed is provoked, it´s nutrients are transformed . Germination significantly increases the amount of vitamins and enzymes. Moreover, proteins , carbohydrates and fats are broken down and become more digestible .

How toconsume them:

You can start using them as a decorative touch to your salads, use them to make veggie burgers, add them to a bowl of cooked cereals, include them in the natural plant milks … and experiment in other recipes slowly as the sprouts have a very strong taste and can be a little overpowering. It´s very important to note that to get a significant nutritional benefit, you have to eat at least 30 grams of sprouts per person.
For more recipes, visit growyouthful.

Homemade germination jar lid.

Homemade germination jar lid.

How to make a homemade jar sprouter

We use a glass jar and metal lid.
With the help of a hammer and a large nail, puncture the lid making some small holes, like a sieve. This is done by placing the lid upside down on a table and tapping it with a hammer and nail . To finish it off , you can sand the burr left on the top. It is very simple and can be done with the help of the kids @ home.

If you do not have a decent watering can, the germinator jar can be ideal for this function!

Basic Tips for germination in glass jars

This method is very useful for germinating seeds of legumes (lentils , chickpeas , soy … ), cereals (rice , wheat … ) or sunflower seeds , pumpkin, even small seeds such as alfalfa , cabbage .. . , but it is not the most suitable for small mucilage like rucula , flax , watercress … for this type of seed it is best to use germination dishes. The germination process in this case should occur in a well ventilated area so that the seeds don´t rot.

Germination jar and seeds that can be germinated.

Germination jar and seeds that can be germinated.

Basically, germination artificially mimics the humidity and temperature necessary for the seed to germinate.

  • The seeds must be whole and organic ones.
  • First the seeds are left to soak overnight in the glass jar.
  • When germinating legumes (lentils , chickpeas ..) don´t fill the jar past the ¼ way mark, for the second day they become very large and may fill up the entire space.
  • Make sure the seeds are kept moist and don´t dry out entirely, this process should be repeated at least once a day.
  • After moving the water, leave the jar upside down in a place where the temperature is between 18-20 ° C. A higher temperature accelerates the process, and a lower temperature slows down the process.
Germination jar resting in the dish rack after straining (recommended)

Germination jar resting in the dish rack after straining (recommended)

  • Cover the jar with a cloth to avoid light which further strengthens the root. If we let in light, the green part will be further developed, which is also edible.
  • Whenever you remove the excess water, ensure that there are no water wells left inside the jar as this may spoil the germination process .
  • The excess water from these ” washes ” is ideal for watering houseplants or keep it for cleaning issues.
  • Spring water is the best to use, but if you don´t have access to spring water, use filtered or boiled tap water. But there are people who use tap water and the process still works.
  • On the third day and you can eat the germinated seed. Each seed has its own germination and consumption time.
  • If you’ve never sprouted seeds , it is best to do the first tests using lentils or chickpeas as they´re the simplest.
  • For very small seeds you may have to resort to another method , as these germinating holes may be too large . They said at the workshop that you can replace the metal lid gauze tied with a rubber band , but i am yet to experiment …

I’ll let you know once i´ve tried!

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