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What are microgreens and which kinds taste best: instructions, how to plant

Yulia PoteriankoLife
Asian cuisine has long used sprouts as a tasty and healthy ingredient

Sprouts of edible plants have long been an integral part of Asian cuisine. The inhabitants of the eastern continent noticed that barely sprouted grains bring almost double benefits to the body and have a special delicate taste. Nowadays, this ingredient has gained a foothold in modern European cuisine and is called microgreen.

OBOZREVATEL tells you more about the benefits of microgreens and how to grow them on your windowsill, which is quite simple and does not require gardening skills.

Why microgreens are useful

At the moment when a seed is just breaking through the soil, the concentration of nutrients in a young plant is the highest. It is just forming and therefore uses the entire supply that was in the seed. It is at this time that the proteins, vitamins and minerals contained in the stem are in the most easily digestible form.

What are microgreens

It is best to consume plants whose stems have reached only a few centimeters in height and have formed only 2-3 leaves. It usually takes 4 to 7 days to germinate seeds to this stage, depending on the crop. And you can grow traditional greens (arugula, various salads), as well as cereals and legumes (wheat, soybeans) and even vegetables (beets, cabbage, radishes).

How to grow microgreens

In order to germinate edible plant seeds, you need to take any material that can serve as a substrate: cotton wool, multi-layer gauze, paper towels, special mats made of plant fiber, and ordinary soil. You can germinate seeds in a jar or linen bag. The easiest way is to buy a ready-made kit that includes a mini-greenhouse, substrate, seed packet, and instructions.

To grow microgreens on cotton wool, paper, or plant fiber mats, you need to spread the substrate on a flat surface, sprinkle the seeds evenly over it, spill it well with water to make it moist, and spray it daily to maintain the moisture level. In a few days, you can harvest microgreens from such an improvised bed. Grains are germinated in the ground in a similar way.

In a jar, seeds are germinated in the following way: a quarter of the seeds are poured into a thoroughly washed jar, flled with warm water, covered with cheesecloth and left to soak for several hours, for example, overnight. In the morning, the old water is drained off, the seeds are washed and put back under the cheesecloth. The washing procedure is repeated 2-3 times a day.

To grow grains in a cloth, you need to put the washed grain in a bag and soak it twice a day in warm water for about a minute, and then place it in such a way that excess water drains out of it, for example, hang it. After a few minutes, the bag should be placed in any convenient place. A well-lit window sill is ideal.

What can be grown as microgreens

Here are the crops suitable for germination at home.

Sunflower

You can germinate both peeled and unroasted seeds and in the husk, in which case they will germinate longer: not 2-3 days, but about a week. Such sprouts contain protein, vitamins A, B, C, K, E, and D, as well as manganese, zinc, iron, and calcium.

Beetroot

It is best to sow beet seeds in the ground or on a mat. The sprouts will be ready in 6-8 days and will provide your diet with vitamins A, C, and E and minerals such as potassium and magnesium.

Wheat

Sprouted shoots are considered ready to eat when the white roots reach the length of the grain. This is approximately 3-4 days after sowing. Microgreen wheat is a powerful source of vitamins A, B, C and E, calcium, phosphorus, iron, niacin, thiamine and pantothenic acid.

Watercress

This leafy crop needs a lot of light to germinate, so its seeds are simply scattered on the ground or other substrate and not covered at all or covered with a transparent greenhouse. In 5-7 days, you will get microgreens rich in vitamins A, B, C, K, calcium, iodine, manganese, iron, and zinc.

Mung beans

The sprouts of this legume are ready for consumption in 2-4 days. They can be germinated in any way. Microgreen mung beans contain a large amount of vitamins A, B, C, E, and K, calcium, magnesium, zinc, fiber and protein.

Cabbage crops

Cabbage is one of the healthiest vegetables, and its sprouts contain an enhanced dose of vitamins A, C, and B, fiber, protein, iron, magnesium, calcium, and potassium. It takes 6-8 days to get the product ready to eat.

Alfalfa

To get microgreens with vitamins A, E, and B, iron, calcium, and magnesium in your diet, you can grow alfalfa. You can harvest it 5-7 days after sowing.

Soybeans

This plant will provide your meals with protein, vitamins A, B, C and K, as well as phosphorus, copper, potassium, iron, manganese and magnesium. It contains soy microgreens, unsaturated fatty acids and fiber. It takes 4-6 days to germinate.

How to store and use microgreen

Cut sprouts can be eaten immediately after harvesting, or they can be dried well and stored in the refrigerator in any closed container. This way, they will remain healthy for a week.

In addition to adding to salads, microgreens can also be used to make smoothies. It can also be stewed with meat or vegetables, such as soybean sprouts, or lightly fried and used in addition to conventional garnishes.

Earlier, OBOZREVATEL told you what to plant in the garden to have almost no maintenance and a good harvest.

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