Sprouts are fun and easy to grow and are delicious, alkaline and packed full of vitamins, minerals and other nutrients. These fun little projects are also a great source of vitamins E, C, B and A as well as potassium, magnesium, iron, calcium and protein. Sprouting unlocks the nutrients & protein inside the plant cells more readily and makes the protein found beans as well as nuts & seeds more bioavailable and more digestible. Sprouting as well as soaking, or fermenting foods also significantly reduces enzyme inhibitors, greatly increasing the digestibility and absorption of all nutrients in food, including amino acids.
For a more in-depth look at why sprouting is so awesome, check out my guy Dr. Josef Marcela’s article.
Step #1 Select Your Bean & Quantity:
Use organic beans such as adzuki, lentils, mung beans or chickpeas. The beans beans will at least double in size during sprouting, so only prepare as many sprouts as you can eat in about 4 weeks. The fastest to sprout are mung beans and lentils, especially if you live in a humid climate. My favorite beans are adzuki beans (shown here) for their nutty texture, high protein and iron and anti-oxidant content. Most dry beans are good for sprouting but you want to avoid black beans as they can be toxic. Note that “split” beans or peas will not sprout.
Step #2- Soak Your Beans:
Place your beans in a wide-mouthed glass jar and fill with filtered water until the beans are covered by about 4 inches of water (use this rule for any amount for beans). Allow them to soak in the water overnight, or for about 8 to 12 hours and then rinse and drain them very well as they can go off if they are too moist. I do this several times inside the jar. Cover with a piece screen from the hardware store (shown here) or a piece of cheesecloth. Leave the jar in a semi-lit place while the beans sprout (I like my kitchen near the window).
Step #3- Rinse Your Beans:
Rinse and drain the beans well 2-3 times per day. The easiest way is to add water through the screen over the top as you can fill it and drain it without having to remove it. Watch your sprouts grow over the next few days. You can stop sprouting after 2-3 days or when the tails are about 1/4 to 1/2 inch long or as long as the body of the bean. You can also keep them growing up to 4 days for large, plump sprouts. Note: chickpeas or garbanzo beans get bitter if you sprout too long so you just want the very tip to be sprouted.
Step #4- Rinse and Store:
Finish sprouting by giving your beans a final rinse and then placing them in the covered jar in the refrigerator. Sprouts should last about 2-4 weeks; however, it will depend on the length of sprouting and amount of moisture on the beans when you placed them in the refrigerator. Make sure that you smell the sprouts for spoilage after 2 weeks and toss them if you are in doubt or you can gently cook them in a soup which is what I do if they are not super fresh as they still have plenty of nutritional value!
I toss them in to salads, in a stir fry (at the end so they stay raw), right before I serve a soup or into a pasta. I also put them in to smoothies to add some living food and some extra protein! (more…)
A new Baker is in Town & She’s A Woman 😉
Lucia Meneses of Massa Madre makes magnificent bread. If you want the best handmade artisan bread money can buy, she’s the woman for the job.
You can purchase through a google form and pay safely on Paypal for a monthly share for $32 (can you say bread CSA!?) and receive bread on a weekly or bi-weekly basis. If you only want one loaf, you’re welcome to one! ($8).
Lucia’s base is a Country loaf which is typically made up of 60-70% white bread flour and 30-40% whole wheat flour. She makes variations on this theme by incorporating walnuts, sesame, sunflower, or flax seeds. She makes Whole Wheat variations as well as a delicious Oat Porridge bread using many organic ingredients as she can, incuding nuts and flour for her rye starter. She uses only filtered water and sea salt in all of her breads.
Email Lucia Meneses at masamadre dot csb at gmail dot com for more information.
Nothing is more nourishing for you body, soul and tastebuds than organic veggies right out of the earth. Don’t believe me? Then you have not been getting the good stuff, I promise you. CSA stands for Community Supported Agriculture and essentially means that you help inject funds into the farm (typically in one lump sum) to assist in their seasonal operation by purchasing a weekly “share”- AKA a box of amazingly fresh produce only days if not hours old.
The average ingredient in a grocery store travels 1500 miles to get to you shopping cart and then onto your plate. In order to transport food long distances, much of it is picked while still unripe and then gassed to “ripen” it after transport, or it is highly processed in factories using preservatives, irradiation, and other means to keep it stable for transport and sale. This greatly diminishes the nutrient value (that is already lowered by modern factory farming practices). By supporting a local CSA you are doing good for you body, the environment and the community, not to mention saving money!
If you are not in South Florida or Austin visit Local Harvest for a CSA near you.
CSA Programs in South Florida
Little River CSA
Grower Muriel Olivares offers two share sizes to meet the demands of your household. Pick up at the Upper East Side Farmers Market every Saturday from 10am-2pm at Legion Park located at Biscayne blvd and 66th street . The CSA runs for about 20 consecutive weeks. Learn More
Bee Heaven Farm
Grower Margie Pickarski offers a weekly or biweekly FAMILY share, which usually satisfies the produce needs for a plant-centric family of 2-4. For individuals or small families, the farm offers a weekly or biweekly SMALL share, which is sufficient for 1-3 people. Additional items may be purchased from a webstore, to accompany your share on your delivery day. Learn More
Grower Michael Borek known for tomatoes, provides farm provides three share sizes, small, medium and large for 30 weeks, starting November 1, weather permitting. Michael previously worked with his mother, Teena Borek of Teena’s Pride CSA Learn More
Swank Farms Specialty Produce
Jodi and Darrin Swank’s program will be start on October 15. Harvested on the same day it’s delivered to 7 Whole Foods stores throughout Broward and Palm Beach Counties you know your veggies will be crisp & fresh… we hear that if they have enough people asking, they’ll come to Whole Foods Coral Gables…. check out their awesome events line-up too. Learn More
Farm Fresh Miami
Sign up, choose a pick-up location near you (over 30). Choose either a half share, full share or juicer’s share of mixed, thoughtfully varied, seasonal fruits/veggies. Next add extra a la carte items you want to get (more on that in a few), provide payment details and wait (eagerly!) for your scheduled delivery day. Learn More
Verde Community Farm and Market
For people, not for profit, Tom Squire has turned part of the old Homestead airforce base into a wonderful farm program– and eatery. Full, half-share and EBT matching programs available at 3 convenient Farmer’s Market locations. Learn More
Harpke Family Farm
Tamer and Claire Harpke (follow their travels in Egypt this summer on social media) offer weekly LARGE shares at their Urban Farm in Dania Beach which usually meet the produce needs for a family of 2-4. Individuals or smaller families who don’t consume lots of produce, a weekly SMALL share is available. Check out their super interesting microgreen CSA & Flexible Carrot Program too! Learn More
Farm Stores & CSA Programs in Austin
Owned and farmed by Glenn and Paula Foore, Springdale Farm sits on 4.83 acres just 3 miles east from the State Capitol in Austin, Texas. Located at 755 Springdale Road in East Austin, the family operated Urban Farm grows over 75 seasonal vegetable varieties and operates a popular public farm stand every Wednesday and Saturday morning from 9AM – 1PM. Learn More
Green Gate Farms
In 2006, Skip Connett and Erin Flynn restored a historic farm site to create a community resource for neighbors of all incomes. “Our vision is to cultivate an organic farm that feeds mind, body and soul”. The farm grows several varieties of vegetables, which are all for sale at their farm stand. They also sell transplants for your garden, herbs, seeds, wildflower bouquets, and baked goods. Learn more
Boggy Creek Farm
Larry and Carola Ann Sayle own an urban farm in East Austin and a larger property in Milam County. On these farms they grow a variety of tomatoes, potatoes, onions, hard squash, summer squash, specialty and salad crops, okra, an much more. The majority of our produce is sold at the farm stand at the Austin farm, at our farm stand Wednesdays and Saturdays. Learn more
Sand Creek Farm
Located in Cameron, Texas, the Godfrey Family became “Farmers to provide healthy foods for our family and to empower you and the next generation to do the same”. Sand Creek Farms grows a wide variety of vegetable crops, and meat and dairy as well and their produce is available through a CSA program. Learn more
Tecolote Organic Farm
The longest-running CSA in Texas and has been brining organic veggies to Austinites for over 20 years and now service over 300 families. They grow over 150 varieties of vegetables and partner with many of the top restaurants in town. Learn more
Urban Roots uses food and farming to transform the lives of young people and inspire, engage, and nourish the community. Founded in 2007 now has a goal of growing 25,000 pounds of produce with the Urban Roots community of youth, community volunteers, and staff. They donate 40% of our harvest to local soup kitchens and food pantries and sell the other 60% at farmers’ markets, through their CSA program and wholesale distribution. Learn more
I’m sure that we have all been told to “Go with the Flow”. Sometimes when sayings become cliche, they lose their power. But the truth this statement could not be more powerful. When things or life in general are not going “your way” it’s probably because you’re not going the right way.
We can plan, work and push all we want, sometimes it works with ease, with flow. Sometimes however, that could not be further from the truth, and it feels like you are pushing boulders up a mountain. THIS my friends is when it is time to stop- and take inventory of where the flow actually is going. It may not be the direction you planned, or a direction you even want. Most likely is uncomfortable and scary, but chances are that there is more wisdom and opportunity in that flow than anything your ego could have had in mind.
As the saying goes, “Your body is a temple.” In order to have a happy, healthy life, we are supposed to eat clean, exercise regularly, sleep 8 hours, drink plenty of water, and generally live a balanced lifestyle. So simple, so doable! As we all know, it’s not as easy as it sounds. Not even for me, and I am in the business of health.
I do my best, and more often than not, I succeed, but I always feel like I can be doing better. I drink my green juices, do some yoga and take long bike rides…but I also love wine, chips & salsa, margaritas, and sweets. I often choose work over play. So despite my “model” behavior much of the time, I still have my vices, and I’m okay with that.
The saying “Love is the answer” conjures up images of a bunch of hippies in a circle singing Kumbaya Is that really a bad thing? I have approached a difficult situation with anger, frustration and blame so many times in my life only to be met with the same energy coming right back to me. When I respond/react with love and compassion, 9 times out of 10, I see the situation diffuse,even dissolve- and relationships and situations evolve into new possibilities I hadn’t even imagined.
I have had one of the most intense experiences in the last six months, one that has changed my life forever. (more…)