Growing Sprouts

Growing Sprouts

Part of Ep. 502 Indoor Gardening

Enjoy fresh sprouts and lentils you grow yourself.  Gil Frishman explains how sprouts are easy to grow almost anywhere, anytime.

Premiere date: Mar 31, 1997

TRANSCRIPT+
Wisc Gardener Transcript: 

Shelley:
Name a vegetable that can be easily grown indoors all year round. Give up? Edible sprouts are easy to grow almost anywhere, anytime. I'm with a professional sprout grower from Gays Mills. This is Gil Frishman, one of the owners of the sproutpeople. My first question is why should I even bother to grow sprouts?

Gil:
Shelley, growing your own food is a great experience. It changed our lives. Sprouts are nutritionally superior to virtually anything. You're looking at a wide range of culinary uses on top of that.

Shelley:
Let's talk about some of the uses. This is the classic, green sprout.

Gil:
Your basic alfalfa-- a sandwich or salad would be naked without it. Beyond that, there's five different lentils in this one.

Shelley:
Really? It's beautiful.

Gil:
We have over 50 different things that we sprout. There's just no limit.

Shelley:
How do you use these?

Gil:
We like to use the lentils on rice. In the last few minutes that the rice is cooking I'll just throw a handful in on top. We've got a couple different bean combinations your pastel beans and your dark beans. They're great for stir fries and salads are very popular for these, also. Snacking is probably the most popular use.

Shelley:
You mean just eating them out of hand?

Gil:
Correct, a popcorn replacement.

Shelley:
Okay, now you're getting me interested. How do I grow them?

Gil:
It's the easiest thing in the world. For the alfalfa or clover-type varieties you take your raw seed and put it in some water. For these containers that we like to use about two or three tablespoons. Stir it up to ensure even water contact for all the seeds.

Shelley:
Is the water cool?

Gil:
It's the cool side of tepid. Let that sit for 8-12 hours whatever's convenient, there. It's not very demanding, they will take more. If they soak for 16, they'd still make it.

Shelley:
This is the container you said you liked?

Gil:
We like to use these. They provide excellent drainage which is very important. Also, they have superior air circulation to the jar which is the conventional method. We have a little screen provided to help keep the freshly soaked seeds from spilling out when you rinse them the first Time.

Shelley:
Okay, we've put them in the container. Then what do we do?

Gil:
We're going to put them under the tap. Once again, the cool side of tepid is pretty much where we like our water. And we're going to rinse them for 10-15 seconds. It will be obvious when you rinse them what they need. Repeat that every 12 hours, draining well each Time. You can tip them, put them on your counter in...
Shelley:
Direct sun?

Gil:
Not direct sun, anything but. They'll take natural light or just incandescent light and they'll turn green.

Shelley:
You've got quite a progression, here. This is three days, four days five, six and seven. In seven days, we're eating our finished vegetable.

Gil:
Correct. The same amount of seed is in each container and has turned to that in seven days.

Shelley:
What about these? This is some sort of bean.

Gil:
Those are mung beans, a four-day sprout. Growing them in these containers is a nice way to get the big, thick root that we like in mung beans.

Shelley:
So, we go from these small beans all the way up to these massive white-rooted beans.

Gil:
In just four days, it's really something.

Shelley:
How do I store them? You're going to put them in the refrigerator. You don't want them to be freshly rinsed. The rule of thumb is, 12 hours past their last rinse take them out of the container and put them in a plastic bag. Clean your container and start again.

Shelley:
Thanks, gil.

Gil:
It's great fun, and tasty, too!

Shelley:
I've been wanting to try them.

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