It’s still getting into the 20s at night in Ithaca, which seems crazy. John and I have been going to the winter farmers’ market and buying some greens and potatoes. And little bags of sprouts from the pregnant woman who sells sprouts. It costs about $4 for a small bag. A little pricey. So when I noticed some lids for sprouting your own seeds at the grocery store I went ahead and got them.
Sprouting (or germinating) seeds actually produces Vitamin C (the Chinese used to take mung beans on long sea voyages and would sprout them as they went to ward off scurvy). Sprouting also enhances the B vitamin content of grains and legumes. And of course, it produces beneficial enzymes.
Sally Fallon warns against eating too many raw sprouts, as the tiny plants produce some substances that are meant to prevent them from being eaten by animals in nature. She recommends lightly steaming them, adding them to soups, etc. (Nourishing Traditions, 112-113). I like to add them to scrambled eggs toward the end of cooking. Or to whatever I happen to be cooking. Throw a few in soup, a pot of lentils, etc.
The method for sprouting varies seed by seed, to some extent, but basically you place some seeds in a mason jar and cover with water. Let them soak overnight. In the morning, rinse them and pour the water out. Tilt the jar at a downward angle, and rinse the seeds or beans 2 or 3 times per day (draining the water after each rinse). In 2-3 days small sprouts should form.
Sources & More Information
Good website for more information about different types, how to, etc.
Read here for information about health benefits