Mung bean sprouts are easy to grow and fun to eat. A versatile vegetable that requires no preparation and only brief cooking. Brief cooking retains the crunchiness and brings out the sweetness. Mung bean sprouts can be eaten at any stage. Use it in soup, stir fry, as a side alone or combined with other ingredients.
The benefit of growing your own bean sprouts is that you can grow as much or as little as you like. Because of the ease of growing and because it can be eaten at any stage you have the ability to control the timing so it is available at its peak, nice and fresh, at the stage you like, when you need it. Bean sprouts will keep in the refrigerator for a few days just make sure the sprouts are dry to the touch before placing in plastic bag.
There are many sprouts growing equipments on the market but I like to use what I have on hand in the kitchen and the simpler the better. I purchase my mung beans from the health food store. If you are purchasing elsewhere, check to make sure the beans are not treated.
What you will need:
a clean colander, preferable a flat bottom one
cheese cloth or paper towel
mung beans, picked over carefully to get rid of any debris and broken seeds
2. Line colander with a layer of cheese cloth (prefer) or paper towel, this is to prevent beans from falling into the holes and clogging them.
3. Drain mung beans and spread in lined colander, cover beans with a layer of cheese cloth or paper towel. Spray with cool water, drain well. Place colander in a warm spot. Do not place in a closed cabinet where there is no air circulation. I keep mine on the kitchen counter.
4. Rinse beans with cool water 2 – 3 times daily, drain well after each rinse. Return colander to warm spot. Do not allow cheese cloth or paper towel to dry out between rinses.
This is what the sprouts look like on the third day (72 hours). The roots are about 1½ inches long you can also see a stem.
This is what the sprouts look like on the 4th day. The roots are about 2 inches long. The sprouted beans have a tint of green because each time I uncover to take photo they are exposed to light. Keep under cover at all time for white sprouts.
This is what the sprouts look like on the 5th day. The stems are now about 2 inches long. The roots did not grow that much.
The sprouts on the left with the green tint are the ones on top of the pack and were exposed to light, the ones on the right are the ones at the bottom and were not exposed to light.
My sprouts are not as fat as the ones in the food markets. To get fat sprouts put a weight on top of the beans at the start.
I started out with 4 ounces (about ½ cup) of dry mung beans and harvest about 1½ pounds of sprouts at this stage. I sometimes let the sprouts grow another day or two.
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