Sprouting has become a worldwide trend and currently even in smaller shops we can easily buy fresh sprouts. The most popular ones are alfalfa green, broccoli, clover, mung bean and wheat sprouts. They are very healthy because enzymes that could be find in them facilitate the digestion of food eaten with the addition of sprouts. Furthermore, during the sprouting process large amounts of vitamins are formed in them. We know now that sprouts are really healthy but whom we should thank for them?
As for the first sprouts, we can boldly say that they are as old as whole mankind. But as for the first reports of eating them, we need to dive into history of ancient China. An old Chinese tale says that it all started on board of a ship sailing up the Yangtze River. After some time, the only food left were dried beans which under the influence of moisture, began to sprout. Sailors had no choice and had to eat them, but later discover that they are tasty and give strength. Chinese physicians already 5,000 years ago recognized many healthy benefits of sprouts and thus often were prescribing them for curing some diseases.
If we read well into history of agriculture, we will find sprouts in every culture on every continent. Alfalfa, or "fresh fodder” in Arabic, was first cultivated in ancient Iran, from where it was introduced by Persians to Greece about 490 BC. First publications about soy sprouts, in the past known as „yellow rolls”, appeared in the third century AD and have been described as „ (…) sprouts [that] come from the first yellow shoots the soybean plant pushes up from the earth”.
While Chinese have been using at first only dried soy sprouts, Mesoamericans learned to prepare their corn sprouts with the use of alkaline substance. This process is called nixtamalization and it increases nutritional value of corn, mycotoxins are reduced with aroma and flavor improved.
Along with the beginning of distant overseas expeditions, sailors began to suffer from scurvy which manifests itself by weakness, depression and sore arms and legs. During the Ming Dynasty, sailors began to tend soybean sprouts in big open tubs on deck. Sprouts are a rich source of vitamin C which lack of causes scurvy. In the next centuries, eating lots of lemons, limes and varieties of sprouts saved thousands of lives of sailors.
Nowadays, sprouts quickly gains more and more popularity. Sprouting is a very easy process which can be performed by virtually anybody with some free time. We can sprout many grains, beans, seeds and nuts. Among all nuts we can eat in sprouted form are delightful almonds which nutritious values are known to human race from at least 19,000 years. They were first cultivated in the Middle East but currently are grown all over the world with United States on the top of the list of the biggest producers. Process of sprouting turns inedible seeds into delicious snack, salad or dinner ingredient and more. Enter the marvelous World of sprouts and try our Crunchy Sprouted Almonds now!
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