We must be getting close to Spring. I think the gray and wet winter is causing me to get a little restless. I'm wanting to grow my own food or at least make an attempt to grow my own food. I'm eager to get outside and enjoy a little sunshine.
Presently, it's raining and the forecast is for rain and cloudy weather for the next few days.
Here's a project I can do indoors and supposedly it only takes four days, growing bean sprouts.
Walton Feed - Sprout Information
Oregon State University - Bean Sprout Info
Bean sprouts, the whitish sprouts often found in the supermarket and used in Chinese food, are sprouted mung beans. Mung beans are little green beans about the size of a bb.
March 14, 2008 - Evening
I don't know if these will work since it isn't seed stock. It's just a bag of beans I bought at the store. I figure they should work since they are dried beans.
I sorted out the beans that were broken and looked too dry or wrinkly.
I measured out 1/4 cup which weighed 1.7 ounces (50 grams).
The next step is to soak the beans overnight.
March 15, 2008:
Morning - After a night of soaking, the mung beans were placed in a strainer and rinsed.
Morning Photo - Soaked overnight
I water filled ziploc bag, 2.33 cups of water, on top of the beans. Supposedly, the weight helps the sprouts grow bigger and thicker. According to the OSU website the pressure should be 0.5 ounce per sq in.
Doing the math!
The strainer I'm using is about 7" diameter at the base so that works out to 38.5 sq. inches at 0.5 ounce per sq. inch gives a total weight of 19.4 ounces. 1 cup of water is about 8 ounces in weight so it works out to 2.4 cups (2.33 is close enough).
Evening - I've rinsed twice today since placing the soaked beans in a strainer. Once in the afternoon and once this evening.
Much to my surprise, the beans are sprouting! This is just a little over 24 hours since I started this project.
Evening Photo - Sprouting!
March 16, 2008:
Continued the soak and rinse regimen - morning, early evening and evening.
Evening - Sprouts getting longer (1/4" to 3/8" long)
March 17, 2008:
Same watering schedule
Evening - Roots are about 3/4" to 1" long. Also the greenish hulls are falling off.
March 18, 2008:
Morning - Allowing the sprouts to soak about 5 to 10 minutes. Also, picked out the empty mung bean hulls.
Evening - Roots are about 1.5" to 2" long.
I may be over watering. I've been soaking the sprouts a little longer in the morning instead of just rinsing. The roots seem to be browning.
March 19, 2008:
Twice a day watering. Morning and Evening. Also, added a paper towel between the sprouts and the water bag.
Evening - Roots are about 2" long.
March 20, 2008:
Morning: Light soak to float out the hulls.
Evening: Washed the bean sprouts and aired out to dry a little. I don't have a salad spinner. Afterwards, the sprouts were refrigerated.
Sprouts are long, maybe 3", but the thick, meaty portion of the roots are about 1" to 1.5". I let the sprouts go 6 days to see if they would plump up a little more, but felt that this was long enough. Any longer I was concerned the roots would damp out.
Initial: Dry Seeds used was 1/4 cup which weighed 1.7 ounces or 50 grams.
Final: Washed and drained spouts weighed 7.9 ounces or 223 grams.
Rereading the reference websites, I'll eventually give it another try to see if I can increase the plumpness. However, the first batch is sitting in the fridge until I figure out what to do with them.