Sunday, January 18, 2009

Mung Beans Sprout

David loves crispy vegetable spring rolls (lumpiang prito) dipped in ketchup. Sometimes, he prefers Mang Tomas Sarsa ng Litson, while I am a vinegar dip (made with white vinegar, lots of crushed garlic, a little salt and black pepper) fanatic. I make lots of these and freeze them in packets of 10 pieces, ready for when he wants something crispy for lunch.

I am quite choosy with the mung bean sprouts I put into my vegetable spring rolls, though. I prefer them when they are just two or three days old--when the beans are still in their 'button' stage and the 'tail' is just about a centimeter long. At this stage, the sprouts have a nutty texture and are more preferable than the fibrous texture of long "tailed' sprouts. So I grow my own to make sure they are in the right stage of growth when I need them.

Mung beans are definitely one of our comfort foods when we long for the warmth of home. Unfortunately, they are high in uric acid and at a certain stage in our lives, we just have to accept that we could no longer indulge in 'ginisang munggo' every Friday. Not to worry though, we can still have 'lumpiang prito' since there other ingredients to it other than mung beans sprouts. With all that uric acid talk, mung beans are still a good source of Vitamins A, B, C and E, Calcium, Iron, Magnesium, Potassium and Amino Acids.

If you want to start sprouting your own, here is how to do it:

First you have to have a bean sprouter. Mine is made of plastic--round, three layered. The first and second layers are transparent and there are small openings on the side where water drains so the beans are not swimming in water. The third layer catches the water that drips from the first two layers.

If you are like me who prefer more beans than roots: Rinse the beans and drain them every 8 to 12 hours for two to three days.

For long roots: rinsing and draining should be done in 4 to 5 days.

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