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Thursday, September 18, 2014

Sprouting Grains Day 1

"Why bother?" You may be asking. I understand, for the longest time it seemed like too much trouble for me, too. However then I started loving my food, gaining health and losing weight on Trim Healthy Mama. I was on a roll, and I wanted...a roll. A really good roll. A nice big yeasted one. And pancakes, with a texture I love, but great kindness to my steadily shrinking waistline. A muffin that didn't contribute to my muffin top. 

Since I'm allergen free as well as gluten free, this posed a real challenge. I like to read cookbooks for fun (really!) and in my searches, I found it challenging to find gluten free recipes that didn't also feature a whole bunch of cornstarch, tapioca starch or arrowroot powder (none of which are weightloss friendly). In fact I didn't find any.

Back at the ranch, I experimented. If you've baked gluten-free before, you know that gluten-free flours can be finicky. But here is the exciting news. Sprouted gluten free flours are very friendly to bake with. They are forgiving, cooperative, tractable. I can improvise with them, in different proportions, and some are more amazing  than others but I haven't had to throw any away. They have all tasted good. This is amazing!!!

Sprouted grain flours have lots of nutritional benefits, too. Apparently, I'm in it for the taste and portion size and weightloss, though. I have known about the nutritional benefits for many years thanks to the Weston A. Price Foundation, and have always soaked my hot cereal overnight as an adult, but haven't acted on sprouting until now.

In the last few weeks, I've developed a pancake recipe that will knock your socks off. You will not believe how many pancakes you get to eat for breakfast, or how delicious they are, or that they contain enough protein to help you sail through your morning with aplomb. The portions are so generous, I was SURE it was two servings, at least one and a half, until I ran the numbers tonight. In short, you will love it, and its' cousins, THM E gluten free yeast bread that can be made in an afternoon and THM E berry muffin. I am salivating just thinking about them. 

But I digress. The point is, to make this quality and generous portion size of THM E gluten free baked goods, you'll need sprouted grain flour. There is a high-quality source for it here:
The grains and flours are about $5 for a one pound bag, some more and some less. Plus shipping. A wee bit out of my budget for the time being. To make the recipes I mentioned above, you'll need sprouted millet and sprouted buckwheat flours. So, place your order at Organic Sprouted Flours, or let's get sprouting! I would be sad it you had to wait and wait for your flour to be done once I posted that pancake recipe. 

My method for sprouting is the same for every grain. These pictures are of millet. Once sprouted and dried, grains can be easily ground to flour using a normal blender (no vitamix required). What follows is day one. Not sure if you'll have the necessary tools? You will need: the grain itself, water, a big bowl or pot (preferably glass, second choice stainless steel), a mesh strainer, a dehydrator or a cookie sheet and oven.

Start with a nice big bag of the grain you want to sprout. 

Put it in a bigger bowl than you think you'll need (it will swell a lot) and fill to the top with filtered water if you have access to it. 

Stir a bit to make sure none of the grains are left floating (floatijg grains won't absorb water enough to sprout). 

Place bowl in an undisturbed part of the kitchen and place a cooling rack on top.

Tuck into bed by covering with a kitchen towel to keep out dust. 

If you like, say a little blessing and think loving thoughts. It is the love that helps it grow and later nourish your family. 

There, was that easy enough? See you tomorrow for next steps, dear reader! 

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