Sunday, January 25, 2009


My screen name is "Garden Girl" isn't it?

It is pretty hard to garden year around here in IA. Oh, I know there are those books about four season gardening. And with the space and ambition (not to mention the monetary investment) for cold frames I'm certain that I could do a good deal more than I do. And perhaps some day I will, but the garden bug has bit again right now and all the seeds have been ordered and it is still too early to garden so I decided to try my hand at growing some sprouts.

Now, I say sprouts and not micros. I could do micros too, they are all the rage at upper-end restaurants but I felt sprouts would be nice because they are essentially soil-less.

I bought some sprouting seeds on-line. After talking with my husband, who does love sprouts. I decided to get a salad mix. It has several different types of seeds: broccoli, radish, red clover and alfalfa. Definitely shop around; I think I paid too much for mine. Try Pinetree Garden Seeds or Johnny's Selected Seeds. Both have better prices than what I paid at Garden's Alive (I bought there because I had some other stuff that was at the best price there and if I bought so much, I could get half off....).

And it is relatively easy to do. You need to let the seeds soak over night in water, then you drain them. You can buy a fancy top like I did or you can use cheesecloth and rubber band. Then, once in the morning and once in the evening, you rinse with water and drain. The second day, you'll see the seeds start to open (this is a GREAT science experiment to do with your kids). Keep the seeds out of direct sunlight, I kept ours in our pantry and that seemed to work really well. When the sprouts are about an inch or more longer, place them in the light. The leaves will start to green up then. Rinse a final time, swish in some water, the hulls will group together, go ahead and drain them off. And enjoy! Put them on salads or on sandwiches or in soups or to any casserole. They are super, super nutritious and I like the crunch and taste they bring to the plate.

Here's the finished product, ready to be rinsed and put into the refrigerator for up to one week!

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