I first started growing my own alfalfa sprouts last summer when I decided that it made no sense for me to spend anywhere from $3.00 to $4.00 on a package of sprouts from the grocery store. First of all, I don’t know what to do with an entire package of sprouts, thus resulting in most of it being thrown out. It is wasteful to the environment. Second of all, I don’t see why I should spend that much money on something that usually ends up in the garbage. It is wasteful to my wallet. Therefore, I should not buy them anymore.
However, I don’t want to give up eating sprouts. They are green, light and crisp. They remind me of radishes. They taste good in my sandwiches. When I put sprouts in my sandwiches made with processed meatless “salami”, spicy mustard and two slices of white processed bread, I can trick myself into thinking that I’m eating something healthy. Plus, it just tastes better that way!
The most sensible (and fun!) alternative to buying sprouts is to simply grow them myself. This way, I can grow the exact amount that I need and reserve the remaining seeds for whenever I want to grow more. Nothing will go into the trash, and I can save money in the long run. So I bought myself a package of Spring Salad sprouting seeds, which is a mixture of broccoli, radish, red clover and alfalfa seeds. In only four days, I can grow one week’s worth of sprouts to go inside my meatless salami mustard sandwiches.
I’m very happy with the results. It is entertaining to watch the seeds grow into sprouts, (or maybe I’m just easily entertained), and I’m actually saving money! One 100 gram bag of sprouting seeds is approximately $5.00. One package of pre-grown sprouts is between $3.00 to $4.00. So far, my bag has provided me with 5-10 batches of sprouts, using about 1-2 tablespoons of seeds per batch. There’s enough in the bag for a few more batches too. In other words, one package of sprouts from the store is the same price as 5 batches of sprouts that I grow at home. Nothing is being wasted. My plan worked!!
HOW TO DO IT
If you want to try it yourself, it is very easy to do. Just add the seeds (a few tablespoons) into a clean glass jar. Place a metal screen or some cheesecloth over the top of the jar and secure with an elastic. Add water to the jar to rinse the seeds. Drain the water. Add about a cup of fresh water again to the jar and let the seeds soak for 2-6 hours. Drain the water and rinse once more. Let the seeds sit in the jar (without water) for several days. Rinse the seeds once a day every day until they have sprouted to your satisfaction.
The length of time required for sprouting is dependent upon the type of seeds being used. Most seed packets come with their own instructions. There is a huge variety of seeds to choose from including alfalfa, radish, mung beans, quinoa, chickpeas, lentils and even wheatgrass.
If you’re wondering where you can buy sprouting seeds, you can try searching the bulk section of your local natural health food store. The Natural Food Pantry in Ottawa sells alfalfa sprouting seeds in their bulk section. The Rainbow Foods grocery store in Ottawa carries a large selection of Mumm’s Sprouting Seeds. Of course, I didn’t learn any of this until after I ordered my seeds from Mumm’s Sprouting Seeds online store. They have an online store for Canadians and Americans, and so far it is the only company I can find that ships to Canada for a reasonable cost. There seem to be several companies that ship to the U.S., so if you want something other than Mumm’s I’m sure there is something else available online.
There’s another jar of seeds on top of my fridge as I type this, and I can’t wait to check it tomorrow morning to see if anything has sprouted yet. Even if I don’t put them into sandwiches, they’re nice to snack on all on their own.
Has anyone else grown their own sprouts? What kind were they and how did you eat them?
Thanks for stopping by today,