Sprouting Foods – Lentils

Sprouting raw nuts, seeds, beans and grains is one of the quickest and easiest ways to pack a group of nutrients into your body in just one handful. Raw nuts and seeds especially already have so many good nutrients in them that, when sprouted, the nutritional profile multiplies.

Things that you can sprout at home; Quinoa, Lentils (not red split ones though), mung beans, pinto beans, chickpeas, alfalfa, broccoli seeds, sunflower seeds etc

Quinoa is a South American grain which is a complete protein.  Protein is made up of 23 amino acids which are the building blocks of all proteins in the body. The Human body contains an amino acid pool which it draws from and deposits into as it needs and consumes. This pool is found in the blood, liver and cells. Even on a fruit diet, adequate amounts of protein can be supplied. Two amino acids are essential to children only, arginine (which is found in chocolate, buckwheat and wheatgerm, amongst other foods) and histine (found in rice, wheat and rye). Goji berries contain both amino acids.

Quinoa is also rich in omega 3, calcium and high in antioxidants and works as an anti-inflammatory.

Lentils are a very good plant-protein source. Cooked lentils contain all of the essential amino acids, but are deficient in Methionine+Cystine. 31% of their total calories are from protein.  Raw sprouted Lentils, on the other hand, contain sufficient levels of all the amino acids, and 34% of their calories are made up of protein.

Aside from protein, when dormant seeds are sprouted all the carbs that were waiting around inside begin to turn to living compounds.  Many new vitamins and nutrients are created, and the seeds suddenly become like little high-protein vegetables.  They are high in vitamins C, A, B and have many minerals. Also, raw sprouts contain a very high number of enzymes, between 10 and 100 times more than regular vegetables.

How to Sprout; 

Soak your beans for at least 8 hours or overnight. Add the beans to a large glass container (like a pyrex dish or large glass bowl) and cover with water that is several inches higher than the beans. You’ll want to make sure that the container is large enough that the beans will have room to expand as they soak up the water. After soaking, drain the beans and rinse them thoroughly until the water runs clear.

Add the beans to a sieve or jar and then let them sit and sprout, making sure to rinse them every 8–12 hours.

Sprouted Salad;
2 cups of sprouted lentils

2 cups of walnuts (organic and raw for maximum nutrition)
2 large carrots
3 cups of baby spinach, packed (or kale, or a combo of the two)

The Dressing;
1 & 1/2 teaspoons of dried oregano

1 & 1/2 teaspoons of curry powder
1/2 teaspoon of garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon of mustard powder
2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil (OR for variation, 1/2 c mayo)
2 tablespoons of lemon juice
1 tablespoon of apple cider vinegar
1 tablespoon of raw honey

Place sprouted lentils in large mixing bowl. Set aside.

In a food processor, chop the walnuts very small, but do not reduce to a powder. If chopping by hand, you’ll want the walnut pieces to be similar in size to the lentils. Put the walnuts in with lentils.

In a food processor, chop the carrots. If processing by hand, you can also shred on a box grater. Put the carrots in with the lentils and walnuts.

Next comes the spinach. Either pulse in food processor or mince with a knife. Put this in with the carrots, lentils and walnuts. Mix to combine thoroughly.

For the dressing, shake all of the dressing ingredients in a glass jar with a tight fitting lid until thoroughly mixed, or use the bowl and whisk method. (if using the mayo, the bowl and whisk is much better suited).


Raw Strawberry and Chocolate Torte

With Strawberry Fair coming up and the arrival of our beautiful friends the strawberries, I decided to have a play. What better to make than a chocolate, strawberry combo.
I have come up with two versions of this recipe a nut free and a nut one- so we will start with the nut one

100g sunflower seeds (ground into a powder)
100g goji berries (pre-soaked for 10 mins and water discarded)
50g dates
50g coconut butter/oil

Place all of the ingredients into a high speed blender and blend until smooth. Press out the mixture into a silcone tin to form a biscuit base.

Middle Jam Layer;

Torte Top;
400g strawberries
100ml orange juice
50g hazelnuts
50g ground almonds
50g sunflower seeds
100g raw cacao powder
50g dates
100g raw cacao butter (melted)
50g coconut butter

First blend the dry ingredients into a powder, then add the rest and blend. I add the cacao butter last. Then gently spread out over the jam layer and place in the fridge to set over night.

Serve chilled and keep refrigerate. This will last for 5 days.

Raw Strawberry Jam

Now is the season for strawberries so you will be getting a few recipes from me to make use of these amazing things. Did you know that strawberries can actually help the body regulate its response to sugar, meaning they are a great fruit to eat to balance your sugar levels? Studies have also shown that if strawberries are consumed three times a week they can dramatically lower inflammation in the body (servings are based on a cup – about 8 strawberries). Strawberries are also very high in anti-oxidants, thus supporting our immune systems. So these delicious fruits are actually amazing for you!

The first of which is strawberry jam – now we all love the stuff but usually its packed full of sugar. Not here. This recipe will take you less than 5 minutes to make and will taste divine;

1 punnet of strawberries (this recipes is based on 400g)
1 cup of dates
2 tbs of orange juice (optional)
1 tbs of coconut oil

Place all of the ingredients into a high speed blender and blend. I even leave the heads on the strawberries.

This is it, then place in the fridge to set and eat on chocolate cake, on bread, over porridge……

Leave in a sealed container in the fridge for up to 5 days, if it lasts that long in your house you are doing well. Mine is gone in a couple of days here.