Our Relief Society

I am sure when it was reveled to Joseph Smith to create a women’s group called “the Relief Society” that the Lord had a HUGE plan in mind. I think back into history and see the amazing things that have come to pass because of the inspired women of the church. Of course, being a musician, I must acknowledge our Hymnbook first, but probably more than Hymns, are the institutions of “relief” that our women’s society can, and has contributed to humanity itself. I have always been a believer in the visiting teaching program. In recent years, I have been taught that we do this out of love, and to offer support and relief yes; but also to have a gentle reminder that we all have problems, and that if we had to choose, we would probably choose the ones that we have.

 

I often think of those pioneer women that we all owe so much to. The countless hours of tending and caring for the sick, hours of sacrifice, while their husband were off on missions, and even war. Walking/wandering place to place in terrible conditions, and in a lot cases extreme heartache, as they lost their babies, children and even husbands, to bring their families across the plains. Why did they do this Sisters? I am sure that there were many reasons, and perhaps they were the same ones that inspired my father-in-law to leave everything he had, risk his family’s lives, and escape from East Germany. I am sure that it was all about freedom, and a better life for themselves as well as for us, their future generations. What a huge price they had to pay for what we have today, and most likely take for grantite because we have always had it.

 

I was really moved by the scriptures that Rosa Rice shared with us this week in the Sanitation Wraps class this week. Doctrine and Covenants 112:23-28, Doctrine and Covenants 84:49-57 as well as and article in the Ensign- April 1989 “Be aware of pride” By Pres. Ezra Taft Benson. If you read these scriptures about the destruction of the world in the days that proceed the second coming, you will note that we are looking a bigger, longer ride than any of all of the Disneyland’s combined. When I realize the turmoil and calamities that are promised to come forth, I must also think about the largest, greatest society of united sisters in the world, and the impact of belonging to that society weighs a little on my soul. We will need a lot more that sanitary wraps! Where much is given, much is expected, and sisters it is my opinion that we have been in training our whole lives, and even train our daughters and sons specifically for the days that are neigh at hand.

 

Contemplating this, there are a few questions that come to my mind: Am I willing and able to help out as the Lord would have me do? Am I spiritually prepared to handle what is right at our doorstep- or in my case, in my front room? Does my family have all of it’s ducks in a row, so that when bigger things happen, will we be able to help others, or will we be in jeopardy ourselves? I think that these are all good questions, and questions to contemplate as we realize that we do live in these last days, and that we were sent here to issue in the greatest of all times, the second coming of our Lord and Savior. That is both overwhelming, but also extremely exciting!

 

The greatest part of all is that we do belong to the greatest society of women ever created, and inspired of God. We will be the “relief” to the world as we share our hope and knowledge with the world. We will have opportunity to share what we have been learning our whole lives, and will be lead by leadership directed and ordained also of God. With credentials like that, we will be successful, but only if we are prepared ourselves, and have prepared our families as well. I am confident that each of you is doing that right now.

 

I didn’t really want to stand on a soapbox, and hopefully you don’t feel offended by anything that I have said. My hope in writing this is to empower all of us to see a bigger picture. My life has been blessed immensely by the Relief Society of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, and it is my hope that I have also blessed others lives all along the way.

 

I want to share the following story with you to show some ways that the Relief Society of our church has blessed my family. I also want to thank each of you for your service to me and mine, in anyway.

 

Quilts of Love

My Grandmother Amelia, and my Mother Hermine were amazing quilters. Each of us 7 children had at least one of their adorned masterpieces on our beds that resembled favorite dresses and outfits of the past, but mostly reminded us that we were loved, safe and cared for. As a small child, we were taught to tie quilts and knew how much love went into one of these works of art.

When I was 12 years old, half of my family was in a fatal car accident in Vulcan, Alberta, Canada, in which our beloved Grandmother was killed. My Mother and my only brother Briggs were also critically wounded. We sat in the pouring rain until a farmer rescued us. He wrapped our bloody family up in a beautiful hand-quilted green quilt, and left for help. When we arrived at the hospital, I felt so bad that we had ruined his quilt, and knew that he had sacrificed something for our trembling family that day.

Six years later, when my sister Shelley and I graduated from Young Women’s, our ward quilted a blanket for each of us. Hers was green, and mine was turquoise. (Mine was prettier- or so I thought.) Several years later, Shelley died of cancer, and my brother and I fought over her quilt, knowing that it was a “love quilt” made and given to her from our ward family. Because I already had a quilt from our ward, and Briggs was her twin, I surrendered it to him. On his return home to Idaho, he came upon a car accident where a family was brutally injured. He found a pregnant Mother who had lost her ear, and all of her scared children, and quickly ran to his car to retrieve his newly acquired green quilt. He stayed with them until the ambulance came, and then watched them, and his green quilt drive away in the snowy weather.

In the fall of 2008, we had to place our daughter in a place of healing for troubled teens. Our hearts were broken, as we dropped our beloved daughter off to her temporary home. When I saw where she would be sleeping, I began to cry, for on her bed was a beautiful hand-made quilt that was sewn by many of my Relief Society sisters for a humanitarian project. My heart was lifted as I felt the love that went into making it radiate from her bed. I was humbled, and knew that she would be wrapped in love while she was so far away from home.

That same year, we had major trial one after another including death, and had also become unemployed for many months. As we exchanged letters with our daughter, and met in counseling sessions with her, we would talk about our lives and what was happening at home as well. Secretly, her school decided to do something nice for our family for Christmas. On Christmas morning, we were each surprised to open a big present with a beautiful hand-made quilt inside. Each one of my children were given the exact quilt made out of the fabric that I would have chosen to suit their individual personalities. As I marveled “how could they have known?” I opened up my quilt, and was amazed- it was solid green. Instantly, I started crying, knowing that only the Lord knew us well enough to know these details, and he was wrapping up my family in beautiful love quilts just like he always had.

These blankets that we received were also humanitarian blankets, made by our Relief Society sisters. I am humbled thinking that somewhere, someone had made that far in advance, the love quilt that my family would need to feel our Heavenly Fathers love in such a special, unique way. I know that as we, as Relief Society sisters, continue to make love quilts and send them around the world or across the street, we are sending a message of our Father’s love for his children. Heavenly Father knows “every little bird that falls” and uses His love quilts to gently catch them. For this, I will always be grateful.

 

My challenge to you today sisters is to examine your households, and find a place to improve, and an opportunity to give. We live in a fast paced world, but the Lord is relying on us to be “His hands”. Let’s be a “relief” to one another and lift a burden each day. We have so much to give and are expected to do so. I love you all, and so does the Lord.

 

Have a wonderful day,

April 🙂

Sterilized Wraps

Sterilized Wraps– Wash and bleach a white sheet. Cut it in strips about 8 inches wide. I do width wise, but can be done length wise also. Take one end and roll it up one at a time. Wrap individually with brown paper (grocery bag) and put tape or a rubber band on it to keep it sealed. Line up on cookie sheet and bake at 225 degrees for 35 minutes. Remove and place in zip lock bags. I keep so in my car kit for emergencies as well as in my first aid kit.


Sterilized Dressings – Remember a dressing is sterile; a bandage is not. Soak clean cloth in a bleach solution (1/10) or hydrogen peroxide solution (50/50). Dry well. Wrap with foil or paper, label, and line up on a cookie sheet and place in oven at 300 degrees for 30 minutes. Remove from oven, let them cool and put them in zip lock bags. Place some in your car kit as well as in your first aid kit at home.

notes via Rebecca Lee

Sterilization By Chemicals

Chlorine bleach (5.25% sodium hypochlorite)

Bleach will kill many organisms immediately, but for full sterilization it should be allowed to react for 20 minutes.  It decomposes overtime when exposed to air, so fresh solutions should be made when needed.


To sterilize dilute 1/10 (one part bleach to ten parts water)

To kill tuberculosis bacteria 1/5 (one part bleach to five parts water)

To inactivate prions* 1/2.5  (one part bleach to 2.5 parts water)


WARNING: Bleach is toxic. It should be used in an open or ventilated area to protect your lungs and your eyes. It’s a chemical, handle it with care.  We don’t need bleach in our bloodstream, so protect your skin from absorbing it. Use gloves.


Hydrogen peroxide (3%)

 HP is simply a water molecule (H2O2) with one extra oxygen molecule.

It’s a sterilizing as well as disinfecting agent for kitchens, bathrooms, toothbrushes, etc. It can also be use in humidifiers.  It can be toxic if taken internally. Corrosive to metals if not diluted.


Full Strength  –  One cap full of HP in the mouth for 5-10 minutes a day to disinfect, whitens teeth, and eliminate bad breath.

50/50  (half HP/half water) – in a spray bottle could be use to clean, disinfect, and eliminate bad odors in kitchens, bathrooms, refrigerators, etc.

¼ cup of HP in aprox. 2 gal. water – This can be done in the sink or big bowl. To clean fruits and vegetables. Don’t rinse after, just dry with a paper towel.


STERILIZATION BY HEAT

Sterilized Dressings – Remember a dressing is sterile; a bandage is not. Soak clean cloth in a bleach solution (1/10) or hydrogen peroxide solution (50/50). Dry well. Wrap with foil or paper, label, and line up on a cookie sheet and place in oven at 300 degrees for 30 minutes. Remove from oven, let them cool and put them in zip lock bags. Place some in your car kit as well as in your first aid kit at home.

Bandages – Wash and bleach in your washer any white, soft color sheet or fabric that won’t bleed. Dry well.  Cut it in strips about 8 inches wide.

Fold in half length wise (4 in) and roll it up one at a time. Wrap individually with a brown bag (grocery bag), tape, label, and store it in a zip lock bag.



*Prions- Infectious agent composed of protein. Found as BSE or (mad cow disease) in cattle and as CJD (Creutzfeldt-jacok disease) in humans.  All prions affect the structure of the brain and neural tissue. It’s currently untreated and fatal.


Please read:

DC 112:23-28

DC 84:49-57

Ensign April 1989 “Be aware of pride” By Pres. Ezra Taft Benson


Notes from Rosa Rice

May Bulk Orders

(This is a sneak peek- bulk order on solar things still to come)

Sprouts

Wow Ladies,

I have spent many, many hours finding the best prices for sprouts that I have EVER seen. (For certified organic sprouts- I found some cheaper from farmer Jo’s backyard, but figured they wouldn’t be the best bet.)

After our sprouting class, we decided that we would offer 4 types of seeds just to keep it simple. We have HUGE minimums to get them at these prices, so please, offer this to your families, friends and wards. I will keep this sale going through May 17th. Our price is in green. (Prices do not include tax, and will have a S&H fee because I get to weigh and bag them all. 🙂 )


  • Alaskan Green Pea (200 lb. min.)

Wholesale $1.65 a pound, Retail: $5.86 a pound

These peas when spouted, taste like fresh peas in a pod! Can you imagine having these in the winter months when there isn’t any other fresh produce? Yummy! They take about 2-3 days to sprout. Delicious on salads or even as a snack! If you aren’t a sprouter, these peas will make you want to be!

 

  • Black Oil Sunflower (200 lb. min.)

Wholesale: $3.25, Retail: $6.84

These are black-shelled sunflower seeds and must be sprouted in dirt. Not only are they tasty, but beautiful to watch growing in your kitchen. They are VERY expensive to buy sprouted, and just pennies to sprout yourself. Good on salads, soups, wraps and as a snack. Yummy!

 

  • Chia- with (50 lb. minimum)

Wholesale $5.00 a pound, Retail: $12.00-$36.00 a pound!!!!

These seeds are #6 on Rebecca Lee’s list of things she couldn’t do without. She calls them “Mother Earth’s Most Powerful Super-Grain” because they are perfectly loaded with Omega-3, 6, and 9 fatty acids. (Brain food). The chia seed is also able to hold 12 times it’s weight in water and is great for endurance, muscle and tissue building. It can be used in smoothies, cereal, salads etc. Eaten whole and raw, 1 Tablespoon can sustain an average person for up to 8 days!!!!  (Read  Rebecca Lee’s information regarding the chia seed. It is worth reading.)

 

  • Mixture of yummy sprouts in a 5-gallon bucket (no minimum)

(Adzuki, Mung, Lentils, Pea, Tricale, Wheat and Fenugreek all in diatomaceous earth.)

Wholesale $100.00, Retail $150.00.

This is a different mixture than the bucket I sold last year, as well as from a different supplier. It has more variety of seeds inside. I think that this is a child friendly mixture because it has some bigger seeds. (My little kids like finger food.)  Great in stir fry, on salads, sandwiches or as a salad itself. Really yummy! (A 5 gallon bucket of seeds is a 1 person, 1-year supply.)

The shelf life on any seeds (sprouting or garden seeds included) depends on where they are stored and what the conditions are there. As with all seeds, they are alive and need oxygen to stay that way. In a cool dark place, they can last up to 30 years, although hopefully you will sprout and rotate your seeds. You can live off of sprouts just like Daniel did in the bible and maintain good health and stamina.

 

If you are interested in ordering, please e-mail  your order to swissmiss1010@yahoo.com.  I will e-mail back your total, then you can mail or bring me your money. All money must be received before I will place your order.

Olive Oil- An Ancient & Modern Day Treasure

Hi Everyone,

Last May, my husband and I were touring the small Renaissance city at the tip of Italy’s boot called Palermo. To me, it was a place of mystery because it was lined with watchtowers all along its coasts to watch out for pirates! It was a fantasy just to be there. In the city center of Palermo there was a washing station where the women would come to wash their clothes using an underground spring. It naturally filtered itself into several different stations carved into the rock by the water and the scrubbing women me thinks. It was fascinating to visualize how the women gathered together (like women at the well) to socialize while working.

Also in the heart of the city was a bank. Our tour guide went to great lengths to talk about the vaults in this bank. They were about 3 feet deep, cylinder in fashion, and you could see how a long vase or something similar would go inside. Only the up most rich could place their treasures there. Knowing that this was a pirate port city, my mind raced to wonder what thier treasures were. We were told that money could not buy what was stored here, but it was used to trade and barter with. We were told that during the hardest times in their history, this was the busiest place in town.

What was this bank used for? You guess it my friends; it was a bank full of vaults for olive oil! Knowing what I know about olive oil, it is indeed gold, and wise are the persons that invest in its value. I am not really trying to sell you oil, but hopefully to instill in you the need to get some on your shelves, and hopefully some that will last a long time.

Years ago, I went to Egypt and invested a lot of money in “Pure perfumes” that were sold in those beautiful “I dream of Genie” bottles that every girl must have! The bottles themselves were of made of the most delicate glass and painted to match their girlish figures. The stopper at the top was precious, and elaborate as well. I bought the most beautiful smelling perfumes available for my mother, 5 sisters and myself. Perfumes called, “Jasmine, Nephritides, Isis” and others with mystical names. I had truly bought a gift no one else could duplicate! I was right about that- just 9 months later when I returned home with my priceless treasures, low and behold, my amazing perfumes smelled like a skunk reunion on the freeway!!!! Absolutely disgusting- to put it mildly. All because of a cheep carrier oil! I had to sit and cry for a while, my gifts were spoiled, and my sisters and mother were so disappointed!

My point in sharing these great and sad memories with you, is to remind you to not be deceived by oils sold cheaper at Costco or otherwise. When you don’t know the history of the oil, you also don’t know what pressing it came, or what kind of olive it was pressed from. If you do your homework, you will find that you should buy olive oil with the following criteria: first, cold pressed and, extra virgin olive oil, if you want it not to go rancid and have a good flavor. There are more details, but this is enough to get you started on your studies. I personally, am purchasing oil like the one I am selling now for those reasons alone, in addition; because I have checked other sites on-line and am selling this oil for $5.00 cheaper than they are.

I hope that you can take advantage at this time to put at least one gallon on your shelves for long-term storage. Buy the cheaper stuff for short term, but gradually add to the long-term storage supply if you can. 

I believe in learning from the past, and have never been so impressed in investing in good, unadulterated oil since my trip to Palermo. Just a thought sisters that I thought I would share with you.

Best regards,

April 🙂


If you are interested in olive oil, just click the link below. Scroll down until you get to olive oil for more details. I will take orders until the 17th of April.


http://www.aprilshowerspreparedness.com/category/group-buys/

Top 10 Reasons to Sprout

1. Only Pennies Per Serving- One tablespoon of seeds will fill a quart jar with several ounces of sprouts. A 4-ounce package will yield several pounds.

2. Simple and Easy- It take less than a minute per day to grow and prepare sprouts. Sprouts will grow nearly anywhere indoors, in any season. Sprouts require very little space and travel well. They are the ideal vegetables for campers, boaters and RVers. Complete, easy-to-follow instructions are provided in the sprouting kits, on the seed package labels and in the Handy Pantry’s book, Sprouting for Health in the new millennium.

3. Fresh and Fast- This “garden in your kitchen” grows very fast, in any kind of weather. No digging, planting, weeding, pests or chemicals involved. And there’s no long wait, as in seasonal outdoor gardens. Just 3 to 7 days to a bountiful, nutrition-packed harvest. When stored in your refrigerator, they will stay fresh for days- even weeks if rinsed properly.

4. Toxin-free Food-Sprouts are as sweet and pure as Nature intended food to be. The Handy Pantry supplies only natural, untreated seeds, with up to 99% rates of germination, grown especially for sprouting. Almost everything we carry is now organic.

5. Complete Foods-Sprouts are real health food. They are full of life- as you will see in how fast and luxuriously they grow. The right combination of sprouts contains everything needed for life and health. All their many nutritional elements are easily assimilated and readily available to your body. When home-grown, you know they are pure, and you can enjoy them at the peak of their perfection.

6. Tasty and Delicious-Bursting with flavor, you may be surprised how truly delectable they are. Enjoy them in salads, on sandwiches, stir-fried, steamed, or even baked in wholesome, home-made breads. You will find several recipe ideas in our book, Sprouting for Health in the 90’s. Check out our sprout recipes!

7. Highly Nutritious-Several contain more protein than cooked meat-at a tiny fraction of the cost. The presence and balance of amino acids makes this protein more digestible. All sprouts are rich in vitamins, minerals, trace elements, enzymes, and fiber. When exposed to light, several become rich in chlorophyll. For specific nutritional qualities of each, see Sprouting for Health in the 90’s.

8. Low in Calories / Low Fat-One fully-packed cup of alfalfa sprouts contains only 16 calories. These are simple sugars for quick energy. Sprouts contain no cholesterol and provide several essential fatty acids. Sprouts are the perfect weight-loss and body-purification food for the 90’s.

9. Help Detox your Body-Chlorophyll helps cleanse and oxygenate the blood. Enzymes aid in the digestion and assimilation of nutrients, and contribute to the body’s life force. Fiber aids elimination and their lecithin helps the body get rid of cholesterol. A raw food diet is one of the best ways to detox your body.

10. Build your Immune System- Antioxidants protect you from radiation and toxic chemicals. They help the body to cleanse, detox, rebuild and heal itself. Sprouts are rich in antioxidants and help protect you from the health scourge of the 90’s- toxic build-up. Antioxidant enzymes are especially important, because they are essential for the proper function of the immune system. Sprouts are one of the best sources for these important nutrients.

 

List via Wheatgrasskits.com

Herbology Invitation

Hi Ladies, 

If you are interested in learning about herbology, now is the time. The accredited School of Natural Medicine is offering their family herbalist course for $100.00 now until the 15th of April. This is the course that I paid $499.98 for 8 years ago. It is on special right now to celebrate Dr. Christophers birthday. (100 years I believe.) This is an introductory course and and is a pre-requisite for the Master Herbalist, Reflexology, Iridology, and Aromatherapy programs that you can take later if you wish.

There are several of us friends who are interested in doing this, and are going to get together to study and share while we learn.  You are welcome to join us.

On my website, http://www.aprilshowerspreparedness.com,  if you follow down the right hand side of the page until you see “partners”, there is the “School of Natural Medicine” logo. You can click on that, and it will take you right were you need to go for more information and to sign up.

I have heard rumor that soon we will not be able to buy herbs anymore if we are not Master Herbalists from an accredited school. Although this might really be a rumor, it wouldn’t surprise me if it came to pass the way things are changing so quickly in our world. It will take some time to become a Master Herbalist, so I think that I will get started now and wanted you invite you to come and learn with a group of friends.

Check it out and let me know if you are interested.

April 🙂

 

 
BULK ORDER INFORMATION

 

 
 The sprout class today was UNBELIEVABLE! Thank you Jana Kay, Linda and Cherise for sharing your talents and enthusiasm! I can’t wait to get some potting soil and more seeds! As soon as I find the best buys for bulk sprouts, I will send it out to you.

For those of you who ordered Neem last month, none of you gave me amounts to purchase. Please check out http://www.aprilshowerspreparedness.com/category/group-buys/ to look at quantities then e-mail me back your order- especially if your name is listed below.
Joan Breedlove

Janeane Sevy

Cheryl Weight

Kim Sowa

Tracie Whitlock

David Atkinson

Lily Simpson

  • Olive Oil orders will be accepted through the 17th of April.
  • Shirley J through the 30th.
  • Moon Cup and Keeper until we reach the minimum order.
  • I have about 13 extra “Cookin’ with Food Storage” if anyone is interested.
  • I will take orders until 12:00 noon on Friday for the Pasta and Fels-Naptha. Then we are finished with those 2 items. Check out the attachments for your totals, and please bring your checks by, or mail them to me.
  • The “Bee Prepared” cookbook is here, ready  to be picked up.
  • All Nuclear kits are also ready to go to your homes. 

That’s all for now friends,

Have a great Easter week-end.

April 🙂

Natural Remedies

The following statements are my opinions that I have made according to my studies and experiences. I am not a doctor or an “authority” on the subject. I invite you to do your own studying and then you can decide if natural remedies can  help you and your family. 

 

I think when you consider doing natural therapy, you also have to weigh Expence -vs- Dr. Appt./Co-pay etc. Although it does cost money to buy the herbs/oils etc. It is always more convenient and cost effective for me to stay home and treat myself and family. I know that there won’t be any side effects, and if we are away from home, I don’t have to worry about a doctor. In my book, knowing how to help yourself, is better any day.It gives me peace of mind knowing that I am not tied to my doctor. Yes, there is room in the natural medicine realm for doctors, but I think that it should go both ways. 

These are some of the natural remedies that I will not live without.

 

Natural Remedies from 

Widmer’s medicine cabinet

 

  1. The trick to natural medicine is to nip it in the bud before it gets out of hand.
  2. Knowing what to do. What are my options?
  3. If the sickness is aggressive, you have to be just as aggressive/consistent.
  4. Don’t be afraid of natural remedies. Be willing to study and to try it out on your own.

 

Herbs:

  1. Echinacea- Start taking it when you feel like you are getting sick. Keep taking it until you feel better. (Garlic and Cayenne work just as well.)
  2. Echinacea/Golden Root- Take this if you continue to get worse, or if you catch it too late. (This one acts like an anti-biotic)
  3. Grapefruit Seed Extract- Also acts like an anti-biotic. Take when you are already sick.
  4. Acidolphalis- cleans out the colon, gets rid of any bad growing bacteria etc.
  5. Kefir- like Acidolphalis, keep the colon clean and healthy. Consume double the dose if you feel you are getting sick.
  6. Coloidal Silver- acts as an antibiotic, but is I find it is better for bactrial than viral infections.

 

Essential Oils: (Young Living Essential Oils only)

  1. Purification: Bacterial infections: Strep, sore throats, sinus infections, bronchitis, mosquito/bee stings etc.
  2. Lemon: Viral infections: colds, flu, etc.
  3. Lavender: Anything skin related: Burns, allergies, hives, eximea, insomnia, restfulness etc.
  4. Peppermint: Stomach disorders, nausea, morning sickness, flu, motion sickness.
  5. Di-gize: Serious stomach disorders: gas/cramping, food poisoning etc.
  6. Peace and Calming: Panic attacks, stress, fear, feeling overwhelmed, insomnia, ADD, ADHD etc.
  7. Capsulate Theives and ingest. This will stop about anything. If it doesn’t right away, take it again!
  8. Reflexology, Acicular therapy, magnetobiology, acupuncture/acupressure, light/color therapy, visulization, stress/emotional release.

 

 

 

DIATOMACEOUS EARTH

Question:

What is DIATOMACEOUS EARTH?

Answer:

Diatomaceous Earth (organic shell flour) is good for keeping seeds dry and preventing insect infestation. This allows us to leave the oxygen in the buckets of seed without worrying about insects. Removing the oxygen from the buckets will reduce the shelf life of the seed causing them not to sprout. If you are storing seed, we recommend that you open the buckets periodically (once or twice a year) to allow them to be aerated. You can pour them from one bucket to another.

Diatomaceous Earth washes off the seeds when they are soaked and rinsed. When used on grains, it is safe to eat, so you can leave it on when grinding grain into flour or cracking it for cereal. You never know it is there.

Why’s and Hows of Sprouting

 

Growing and Using Sprouts

 

Sprouts are a great benefit to good health because it provides vitamins, protein, minerals, live enzymes, and fiber to your diet.  Typical foods set aside for storage are traditionally low or nonexistent in vitamins and minerals.  They contain few calories if any and no cholesterol.   

Varieties of seeds:  Alfalfa, radish, broccoli, adzuki bean, garbanzo, lentil, mung, soy, whole green peas, wheat, rye, kamut, triticale, buckwheat, and spelt are only a few.  Many mixes are also available on the market.   Do not eat tomato or potato sprouts as they are poisonous.

 

Sprouts nutrition: Sprouts are great to eat for everyday living and especially in an emergency situation.  They provide nutrition needed that is lacking in cooked seeds.  Little has been published on nutrition facts of sprouting seeds but what have been researched shows sprouts are a high source of vitamins A, B, B complex, C, D, and E, They also contain minerals such as calcium, magnesium, potassium, iron, zinc, and phosphorus.  Alfalfa sprouts can add up to 35% of your protein to a diet.  Many sprouts are a means of getting fiber in your diet.

How to sprout:  Sprouts are easy to produce and require no special equipment or knowledge.  There are several sprouters offered on the market that are easy to use.  The important thing to remember is that seeds need to be kept moist, warm, and dark.  A simple jar with cheese cloth over the top and fastened with an elastic will work. 

Seed amounts to use per quart jar:

  • 2 Tablespoons: Alfalfa, radish, clover, cabbage.
  • ½ cup seeds: Wheat, All Beans, Rye, Oats, Rice, Sunflower, Lentil, Hulled Buckwheat, and Garbanzo Beans.

Smaller seeds will not expand as much as larger seeds.  Some may soak up to 2-3 times heir dry volume in water.

Seeds need to soak 6-12 hours.   Place seeds in container or jar and cover with water.  Allow enough room to expand 3-4 times original volume.  Do not cover the container.   Drain the water and rinse seed.  Drain again.  You can use a thin cloth, cheese cloth, nylon stocking to fasten around the opening of the jar.  Secure it by using an elastic or bottle ring.  Place in a dark, warm place with the bottle upside down and elevated so excess water can drip out. Of course you need to put something under the bottle to catch the dripping water. Use a lid that permits air to move in and out of the jar. After the seeds have stopped draining, if you are sprouting very small seeds like alfalfa, cabbage or radish seeds, roll the bottle, coating the outer wall of the bottle with seeds. Leave the bottle on its side in the dark. Room temperature is best for growing sprouts, around 70 degrees F. Rinse the seeds twice a day, being sure to drain them well. (Do not neglect to rinse them. They will sour and be useless.)   

Length of time for sprouting:   Large seeds will sprout within two days and will be ready to eat.  Smaller seeds will take 3-5 days.  These bigger seeds such as beans, lentils, and wheat will have a white tail sprouting from the end of the seed.  They will be mild and tender.  Place in refrigerator to keep from maturing too quickly and preserver their flavor.  Smaller seeds such as alfalfa, radish and broccoli should be allowed to grow longer.  If the root becomes to long you may pinch it off before eating. 

For sprouts you are going to cook, let the sprout grow only as long as the seed. For sprouts you will eat raw (except wheat) let them grow up to 2-3 inches. Expose mature alfalfa, wheatgrass, buckwheat or sunflower sprouts to indirect sunlight for 4-5 hours. As they turn dark green their vitamin A content dramatically increases. (This is an important step, for if you don’t, your sprouts will have only about 1 percent of this vitamin’s RDA. Don’t expose bean sprouts to sunlight as this will give them an unpleasant bitter taste.) When your sprouts have grown to the desired length, rinse them again, and then put them in a sealed container with something to absorb the water on the bottom and store them in the refrigerator.

Sprouting adzuki and mung beans under pressure

These beans require a different method for sprouting to ensure large sprouts.  Place soaked beans in a small colander inside another container. Place several layers of burlap over the top of the seeds, and then place a 3-5 pound bag of marbles or small stones on top of this. Water every two or three hours to ensure adequate moisture (this prevents the root systems from over developing in their search for water). Keep them in the dark at all times or they will turn bitter as they begin to green. When they are 2 to 3 inches long, remove them from the colander and refrigerate.

 

Using your sprouts:

After sprouts reach their peak, they will begin to loose some of their flavor and nutrition values.  Different sprouts have different shelf life.  Storing in a refrigerator will help lengthen time.  Sprouts will last 2-6 weeks if kept cool. By growing small amounts at different times you will ensure you always have sprouts ready to use and eat.

Seeds with a fuzzy moldy appearance may only be the tiny root hairs on the stem.  Carefully look at the sprouts before discarding them.  You should not get mold unless you are not rinsing you sprouts twice a day.

Cook sprouted beans using the same recipes you normally use. Sprouted beans cook in 2/3rds the time of unsprouted beans. Heat kills a percentage of the vitamins and enzymes gained by sprouting, so simmer or steam slowly depending on your recipe, and don’t cook longer than necessary.

You can sprout a mixture of seeds to make great green salads all by themselves. You can also use raw sprouts in just about anything:

  • Blended in drinks.
  • Added to bean or lettuce salads.
  • Mixed with already cooked breakfast cereals.
  • Wrapped in tortilla or taco shells and smothered in your favorite sauce.
  • Added to soups and stews just before eating.
  • Sprout filled Won Tons.
  • Put into sandwiches.

Raw sprouts are so versatile that they can also be thrown into just about anything then cooked, such as:

  • Breads and biscuits.
  • Soups.
  • Pancakes.
  • Eggs and omelets.
  • Oatmeal or cracked wheat.
  • Sauces.
  • Mexican or Chinese foods.
  • Potato Patties.
  • Casseroles.
  • Dips.
  • Meatloaf.
  • Any vegetable.
  • Stir fried all by themselves.
  • Even desserts. Really, the sky’s the limit.

 

Helpful hints:

When cooking sprouts, it is better to steam or stir fry them than to boil them and discard the water. You only lose 20-30 percent of the vitamin C compared to 60 percent.  Black beans, pinto beans, soy beans, and other large beans are best cooked before eating.  They are hard to digest when eaten raw. Mung beans are the most popular in Chinese cooking. 

When sprouting grains some of the quickest sprouted are the hulled seeds.  Another name for hulled is groats which simply means that the seed has been hulled.    Buckwheat, barley, and oats are very popular.  Quinoa is the quickest of all sprouts as it only takes 30 minutes to loose its outer shell.  It is used in place of rice in many dishes and has great nutrition. Other grains for sprouting are wheat, rye, amaranth, and kamut.

Storing your sprout seeds:

It is suggested that if you plan to get all your vitamins from sprouts alone, that you store up to 125 lbs of a variety of seeds per year per person. If you have other sources for your vitamins, it is suggested you have 30 lbs of seeds set aside for sprouts to be eaten raw, and 30 lbs of sprouts intended to be cooked per year per person.

Many specialty companies exist that deal exclusively in sprout seed. Sometimes this proves to be more costly.  Before purchasing large amounts of storage seed intended for sprouting, purchase a small amount and test it to see if it sprouts well.

Sprouting seeds of vegetables will store up to 3-5 years if it is stored in a cool (at least 60-65 degrees F) dry place. If you are storing large seeds, it may be packed in containers to keep clear of bugs but do not nitrogen flush as they will not sprout.   Seeds may last up to 10-15 years stored in this way.  It would be helpful to ensure that you seeds are stirred occasionally to introduce oxygen back into them.  As your seeds get old they will take longer to sprout, and you will progressively get more seeds that won’t sprout. The key again is rotate, rotate, rotate.

Use several different kinds of sprouts to find what you like before purchasing a large quantity of seed. Do not purchase seeds intended for anything except human consumption. Many seeds processed by farmers and gardeners for planting have been treated with fungicide and or insecticide agents and are very poisonous. These seeds are usually, but not always dyed red. If in doubt, ask.

Other web sites with good information on sprouts include: 

www.lifesprouts.com

http://chetday.com/sprouts.html

www.sproutpeople.com

 

References: 
Information was taken from Rita Bingham’s book-Natural Meals in Minutes as well as from the website sproutpeople.com and life sprouts.com.