The practice of germinating seeds which could be eaten raw or cooked is called as Sprouting. Sprouting could be done industrially or can be prepared even at home. It is said to be the most easiest method being adopted to have fresh vegetables for salads or otherwise in any season.
Pulses can be sprouted by soaking them in water for 12-24 hours and allowing them to sprout (covered in a wet cloth) for 12-36 hours.
Advantages of sprouting:
* Sprouting modifies starch and improves its digestibility.
* The protein in pulses become more available to the body.
* Iron absorption is increased as a result of germination.
* Sprouting increases the vitamin C content of pulses.
* B- complex vitamin are increased during sprouting.
* Consumption of pulses usually causes some gas production in the large intestine. Sprouting reduces this tendency.
Sprouted pulses can be easily incorporated into dishes and can also be served as salad.
Both vitamins B and C are easily destroyed by heat hence, sprouted pulses should not be heated for too long. It may be steamed for five minutes or could be eaten without cooking.
To prevent the sprouts from souring it can be rinsed two to four times a day depending on the climatic conditions. Each seed has its own ideal sprouting time.
The consumption of sprouts will make one feel fuller and it will not make one feel hungry for a longer period of time thus results in weight management. We can add sprouts in salads, soups, meat dishes and pasta to make them more delicious, scrumptious and appetizing. Since enzymes are lost during cooking process one can snack on them fresh.
Sprouted green gram salad:
Sprouted green gram -30 gm Green chilli(minced) – 1 tbsp
Lime juice-1/2 tsp Oil – 1 tbsp
Coconut scrapings-30 gm Mustard seeds – 1/8 tsp
Onion(minced) - 15 gm Salt – to taste.
Cucumber – 30 gm
1. Steam the sprouted green gram for 5 minutes.
2. Slice the cucumber into small squares.
3. Mix sprouted green gram, lime juice, coconut, cucumber and salt.
4. Heat oil in a frying pan. Add mustard seeds followed by minced onion, green chilli. When onion turns golden brown, remove from fire and add to the sprouted green gram mixture. Mix well and serve.
It is also indicated that sprouted grains may represent a nutritionally superior alternative to ungerminated grains. Sprouts are nutritious as they contain all the necessary elements which a plant needs for growth and development.
Processed foods often lack the vitamins and minerals necessary for growth and development. Therefore, sprouts should hold a prominent place in one's diet. Among the other facts that seeds are low in cost it can be stored indefinitely, and are easy to grow, and when sprouted, increases their nutritional value many times higher.