SPROUTED MUNG BEANS (raw-vegan)
Sprouts are a staple in my kitchen, as they should be for any raw kitchen. Not only do I sprout beans, I also do traditional sprouts like SPROUTED MUNG BEANS. I love the flavor and versatility of sprouts, I use them in salads, juice them and have even been known to drop them in a smoothie or two. Sprouts have a high mineral and water content and are full of nutrients and plant-based protein. When sprouting beans, I normally only give them about 5 days to sprout so that the bean part is soft and edible which allows me to consume them on my raw diet. With “green” sprouts, meaning I only eat the sprouted part not the actual bean or seed, it normally takes about 10 to 14 days to fully sprout.
Most of us know about mung bean sprouts, they are the white long sprouts in a lot of Asian cuisine. Don’t get me wrong, I do like them but with some recipes I like the robust flavor and texture of fully sprouted mung beans. I find that commercial mung bean sprouts have too high of water content and lack flavor; so I sprout my own most of the time. Pretty much any whole organic bean or seed will sprout for you and it is pretty simple to do to. The results are a flavorful, vibrant colored sprouts that you also know were handled correctly. Often we hear on the news of diseases contracted by sprouts like e.coli. This is because of improper handling and growing conditions on commercial farms. Commercial farming sometimes uses unclean or waste (animal and human) water in the growing process and packing for shipment. This is one of the ways diseases are spread on top of poor hygiene practices of the workers. Certified Organically grown sprouts are safer because they are forbidden to use waste water but worker hygiene is not part of the certification process. These can be more convenient to buy sometimes than growing your own (I sometimes buy them), although this does not guarantee they are free of risks. We have recently seen in the news about an organic product being contaminated, so organic isn’t always the answer. Growing your own will ensure of clean growing and packing conditions and will also ensure that no pesticides or chemicals will be used. Because a majority of residues are topical, you should ALWAYS wash your produce well, whether it is commercially, organic or even homegrown. Besides sprouts being healthy for you, I find is it is a fun project too. To see life grown in your kitchen is an experience; kids get a kick out of it too. I remember when I was a kid we used to grow veggies and I loved it. I still feel like a kid when I see my beans and seeds sprout and grow.
Now that you see that you can sprout many things and that they are safe to eat when grown at home, plan on making this a project and ENJOY!
A CHEF’S TIP: I grow my own mung bean sprouts. here is how:
GROWS ABOUT 4 CUPS OF TRIMMED MUNG BEAN SPROUTS
1 cup organic dried mung beans, rinse well and pick out any damaged or split beans
4 cups of clean cold water
large soaking bowl
2 half-gallon glass jars, sterilize with hot water and dry overnight
In the soaking bowl, place the mung beans in and cover with cold water. Allow to set 24 hours and drain. Place half of the beans in each glass jar and allow to set in a sunny spot inside until fully sprouted like the picture above. Be sure to rinse (in the jar) every 24 hours for the first 5 days, then rinse on every second day until desired amount of growth is achieved 10 to 14 days. When you are ready to use them just trim off the root ends, rinse well and use in your recipes.
NOTE: you can actually eat the sprouts at anytime during the sprouting process. The bean is not edible until after about 6 days of sprouting.
Here is a recipe to use your fresh sprouted mung beans in CHINESE MUNG SALAD WITH SPICY PEANUT SAUCE….just click on the picture below to get the recipe