Sprout Your Own Lentils

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Watch: CHCH Morning Live – Sprout Your Own

How are you at sprouting? Do you know what they’re good for and that you can easily grow your own? Puneeta Chhitwal-Varma showed how.

Sprouting Lentils as Sustainable Food

Our news feeds are full of climate change stories of record-breaking weather anomalies, out-of-control wildfires, and never-before-seen extreme temperatures. And this is all taking place while we are all still reeling under the impact of COVID-19.

We can all make the changes needed for good-for-us, good-for-the-planet kitchen and home habits. This approach, as you may be aware, is grounded in the food and mood research from Deakin University, Australia, and is inspired by the planetary health diet and the IPCC climate reports. It is part of a sustainable lifestyle.

Sprouted lentils are a protein-rich superfood. You can sprout your own lentils on your kitchen counter with no extra appliances or tools needed.

If your life is anything like mine, living in between homes right now in a tiny rental with hubby and kids and a cat out of suitcases and cardboard boxes… and you still want to make something wholesome and delicious and will help you feel good about sustainable living, then sprouting lentils is for you!

Why would you sprout lentils?

On top of being good for you, sprouted lentils have a unique and tasty flavour.

(I share these tips on my Instagram and via my monthly newsletter too!)

What you need:

  • A bag of whole lentils – any kind, beans will do too!

(I am showing you how to do this with green whole lentils – Moong bean as we call them in India.)

Day 1 – Step 1

  • A cup of green whole lentils rinses in cool running water a couple of times
  • Soak it overnight in enough water to cover it and a couple of inches to spare

What you need to sprout are moisture and air circulation.

You start by soaking the lentils because that way the water seeps through the out layers and activates the seed. They will become soft and chewable.

Day 2 – Step 2

  • The next morning toss the water rinse them again
  • Keep them damp – covered with a damp dish towel in a corner of your kitchen
  • In the evening, toss them gently with your fingers so they all get aired out
  • Dampen the dish towel again and cover them for another day

Day 2 – Step 3

  • Allow the lentils to keep sprouting for another day
  • You’ll begin to see some leaves – these are the “microgreens” that are so popular now
  • Store in the fridge for up to 3 days
Sprouted lentils – day 3

How are sprouted lentils good for you?

There are several good reasons to sprout your own lentils:

  • If feel lentils don’t have don’t agree with you – this mellows them out, makes them easier to digest
  • If you’re looking for something that’s snack-ready in the fridge
  • You haven’t been able to shop for fresh produce
  • You can save some $$$
  • Sprouting increases the nutritive value of the ingredients and provides better digestion, plus they provide more vitamin C and D
  • They are sustainable food

One Final Tip for Sprouting

All “whole” lentils and beans can be sprouted using this method!

Puneeta Chhitwal-Varma<br/><small>Photo by Tanvi Madkaiker</small>
Puneeta Chhitwal-Varma
Photo by Tanvi Madkaiker

About Puneeta

Author, Educator, Speaker

Puneeta is a writer, food advocate and guide for those who seek earth-friendly, delicious solutions that work for real life.

2 Comments

  • Hello, I saw on CHCH you explaining how easy one can sprout beans. I have some questions. once sprouts begin, do you put bowl in the fridge? once sprouting begins, how many days still edible? any concerns about bacteria, as sprouts are known to have bacteria. You stated you rince 3 times when starting, do you rince again daily?

    Reply
    • Hello Annette, I’m so glad you’re motivated to try sprouting, it’s surprisingly easy once you get the hang of it, I promise 🙂 Here are some extra tips: Start with lentils before beans – the green moong I demonstrated on TV or whole brown lentils are both a good way to start. Leave the fridge bowl on the counter while it is sprouting – once the “tails” have reached the length you like, cover and refrigerate. Stays good in the fridge for another few days. Yes to concern about bacteria – it’s the reason why I don’t buy commercially grown sprouts anymore. At home though, it’s easy to see the mould. Rinse and toss every 10-12 hours t keep it moist and to circulate the air and it should be good. I am doing a more detailed video soon – sign up for my newsletter on this site so that you see it when it’s out. Have fun sprouting! / puneeta

      Reply

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