No, I don’t have a recipe to share with you that uses those three ingredients. (That would be pushing the limits for sure). I realized I needed to answer some questions about sprouts and I also wanted to include some of my tips for how I use broth for Cheeseslave’s carnival today, and who can resist saying one more thing about chocolate?
So before we get into broth and sprouts, let me say one more thing about chocolate. And thank you everyone, for sharing your delicious and nourishing chocolate recipes yesterday. It was great!
With excellent timing, while I was in the midst of adding chocolate links in yesterday, I got a package from Navitas Naturals. They had kindly sent me a new item to try which was particularly fitting for the day. It was raw cocoa nips that are covered with chocolate liquor and cane juice (pictured above). I eagerly opened them to try, as all those chocolate recipes were making me hungry! I have to say, that they are really delicious! Definitely the best cocoa nips I’ve ever tried. They have a slightly crunchy outside texture, and they sort of remind me of chocolate covered coffee beans. They would be so delicious in ice cream (perhaps like Kimberly’s Mocha Ice Cream with Cocoa Nips!) or added to a trail mix. So all cocoa nib lovers, take note.
Now, to answer some of your questions about sprouting (for more info on sprouting, check out my post Why Sprout)
Sprouting Q & A
Q: How long do sprouts last?
A: This depends on what you are sprouting. I find that sprouted grains and lentils should be used up a bit faster, as sometimes they can continue to sprout while in the refrigerator (lentils with a 1/4 inch sprout tail are nice, but with an inch long tail aren’t as pleasant). I also read that they can become bitter after more than a few days. I just used some sprouted lentils to make my Curried Sprouted Lentil dish and the lentils were 4-5 days old, and it was just starting to get to the point where I wouldn’t want to use them anymore.
Just make sure that you always store your sprouts dry! If they are wet, they will spoil very quickly.
Now, for a more “green” sprout like clover, they can actually last a very long time. According to Sprout People, they can even last up to 6 weeks if stored properly!
Q: I am new to sprouting….so here is a basic question. When you sprout the beans or lentils do you just use them in your recipe as you would have unsprouted?
A: I am still in the “experimental” stages of using sprouted beans and lentils in recipes. This is what I have found out so far. First, they don’t take as long to cook, think about half the amount of time. Secondly, they don’t need as much water to cook. You are more “steaming” them. They don’t seem to absorb water like non-sprouted beans do. Because of that, you will probably want to lower the amount of water in recipes, and also expect the consistency to be different. I noticed that my sprouted black bean soup I made the other day wasn’t quite as “creamy” as when made with soaked beans. Something in the texture had changed, and the outer ‘skin’ of the bean, if you will seemed just a bit more assertive.
Q :I have loved reading your recipes. I am trying to find a good – doable- recipe for sprouted Ezekiel Bread. I love the Food For Life brand – but it is pricey and I want to make it myself. Any ideas on this? Have you made it? I will definitely follow the colander method for my sprouting- how easy for large batches.
A: I have been reading about some different ways to make sprouted bread. I think that it is certainly doable, but will take a little skill to really be able to mimic the store bought kind. Some of the grains they use are a little harder to sprout, so it may take a little practice to get the sprouting right for all of the different types of grains. Before I work on a recipe for yeasted sprouted bread, I am probably going to try to make some “essense” bread, sometimes also called manna bread. It’s a non-yeasted sprouted bread that is usually cooked at a low temperature. It’s not as light as the yeasted sprouted breads, but I have to watch yeast consumption in my family. If I come up with something good, I will share it for sure!
Q: This seems like a silly question, and the answer is probably “no,” but can you sprout split legumes? We use a lot of chana dal, which are split black grams. I know I can soak them, too, but I would love to start sprouting if I can.-
A: My understanding is that you have to use “whole” legumes to be able to sprout, so you are right, the answer is “no”. 🙂
All winter I have been planning on doing a post about the wonders of broth, but just haven’t gotten to it yet. So today I offer you just a few thoughts on broth.
Broth Saves Time
Last night, I had a huge pot of turkey broth going. Elena has been fighting off a chest cold, and so life has been a little bit crazy the last few days. But with the broth happily simmering away, I was able to simply skim off a cup of rich, delicious, nutritious stock (poured through a little tiny strainer), salt it, and give it to my sick daughter to enjoy at any moment. Many may feel that making stock is just too time consuming, but in my experience, it actually is a huge time saver! To continue on in my story of yesterday, Elena had several glasses (she would rather drink it in a cup then use a bowl) through the morning and afternoon along with her other food, and then for dinner, I made a hearty soup out of some more broth. I was fighting off the same cold, so it was such a relief to have something so healing and easy to serve.
Broth Utilizes Leftovers
The other wonderful thing about broth/stock, is that it helps you not waste anything. I mentioned this in my post about lamb broth. But even beyond using up bones, you can also use up vegetables that have seen better days. Another addition I tried the other day was the stems from cilantro. I made my cilantro sauce one night, and I didn’t want all of those flavorful stems to go to waste. I added it in to my pot with some bones from some chicken legs, carrots, onions and celery, and the next morning we woke up to a delicious, fragrant broth that would be perfect for a Mexican soup. Broth helps you not waste which helps you save money in an extraordinary way.
And so, there you have it, chocolate, sprouts and broth.