Sunday, November 29, 2009


o Scrape, cut & store drumsticks in clean ziplock or freezer bags, make a few small holes, & they'll stay fresh for 8-10 days in the fridge.
o Refrigerate rolled puris for 5-10 mins before frying- they'll soak less oil & be crispy.
o Curds stored in ceramic, glass or earthen pots won't sour fast.
o Freeze excess tomato puree in an ice cube tray, & use when needed.
o Use water drained from tied curds (whey) to knead chapati dough for softer chapatis.
o Wrap coriander, parsley, etc. in plastic after wrapping in paper. They won't turn soggy or dry.
o Add a pinch of salt to hot water, to retain its heat longer.
o Chop apples, pears, etc. into a bowl of chilled salted water, They won't get discoloured.
o Dry boiled unskinned peanuts in sunlight, they'll last for over a week.
o Avoid over absorption of oil in fried foods, add a spoonful of rice flour to the batter.
o Warm extra-tight jar lids under running hot water, to open easily.
o Place a bowlful of white vinegar near your stovetop to absorb strong cooking odours.
o Milling wheat flour and soyabeans together will ensure that the chapatis do not smell of the soya. The rotis will turn out softer too.
o Add 1 kg soya beans to 10 kg wheat, before milling wheat flour. This will take care of protein required by our body.
o When gramflour is combined with a bit of other flour like wheat, rice, etc. it makes the pakodas crisper, & also soaks less oil.
o If ghee feels a little off taste, add a few curry leaf stalks or betel leaves & bring to boil. Cool & strain, it will taste fresh & aromatic again.
o Place soda bicarb in a small open dish in the refrigerator. This absorbs strong food smells, keeping them from permeating into other foods around it.
o Baking powder is soda bicarb with the additional ingredient called tartaric acid.
o Don't dispose the water drained from washing rice, dals, etc. It's a rich food for plants.
o Add a pinch of soda bicarb to peas while boiling to retain colour & cook faster.
o Soak fruit like lychees, mangoes, which have inherent heat, in water for 2-3 hrs. They taste better too.
o The more chilli u use in a recipe, more salt is required. It's reverse with herbs.
o To cut down salt intake, use more herbs like mint, sage, rosemary, etc., which enhance the flavour of veggies.
o Keep garlic flakes peeled & bottled in the freezer to make them handy. Will keep for over a month.
o Keep rice from getting worms- rub it with 1/2 cup Castor oil to 5kg rice.
o To absorb salt from an over salty gravy, add a lump of unsalted wheat flour dough, & simmer.
o Add a little wheat flour to boiled spinach before grinding, it won't become runny after cooking.
o Boil a bay leaf with steamed rice, to give a rich flavour to it.
o Use whey from curds & buttermilk to knead chappati dough. They'll be softer.
o Make rice grains whole & non-sticky: Wash drain & air out on a cloth before adding to boiling water. Add salt & a few drops of lemon to the water.
o Save rava from worms- roast lightly, cool, & store in airtight tin.
o Place unripe tomatoes in brown paper bags, to ripen faster.
o Place a garlic flake on a flat surface, give a sharp, hard tap with the flat part of a knife or other flat surface, the skin will come out easily.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Prepare Mung Bean sprouts

Nutritional info:
Vitamins A, B, C and E
Calcium, Iron, Magnesium, Potassium
Amino Acids
Protein: 20%
Sprouting Instructions
Yields approximately 1 Cup (1/2 lb.) of Sprouts
Put 1/3 - 1/2 Cup of seed* into a bowl or Sprouter.
Note: Mung Beans are grown in China by farmers - often with little machinery. After harvest they are left to dry on gravel roads - so they are dusty. So: Prep before Soaking, by running water through them until the exiting water runs clear. It doesn't take long - they aren't very dirty nowadays. Is that not cool?! The dust/dirt you just washed off of your Mungs was part of a Chinese road!!!
Add 2-3 times as much cool (70°) water.
Mix seeds up to assure even water contact for all.
Allow seeds to Soak for 8-12 hours.
Note: Occasionally Mungs will have some small percentage of hard seed (seeds that are as hard after soaking as before because they don't absorb any water). If you buy your seed from us this is not much of a concern, but you should examine them after soaking to make sure there are no hard seeds lurking at the bottom. If there are - throw those (the hard ones) out! They are easy to spot as they are smaller and darker, and they make a different sound, than those that are swollen with water.
We normally soak mungs for the full 12 hours in any case. If you got your seeds elsewhere and have a problem with hard seeds you can often solve the problem by initiating your soak with warmer water (start at 80 - 90°) that will cool as the soak progresses. The warmth can convince most hard seeds to go ahead and drink.
Empty the seeds into your sprouter if necessary.
Drain off the soak water.

Rinse thoroughly with cool (60-70°) water.
Drain thoroughly.

Set anywhere - in low light and at room temperature (70° is optimal) between Rinses.
How Long to Grow
If you just want little sweet mungs
(1/4 - 1/2 inch roots):
Rinse and Drain every 8-12 hours.
for 2 - 3 days.
If you just want to grow big mungs
(1 - 3 inch roots):
Rinse and Drain every 8-12 hours.
for 4 - 5 days.
Grow them for as long as you like (as long as you continue to Rinse and Drain every 8-12 hours) and find out for yourself when they are most delicious!
Big and Thick Notes:
Mung Bean Sprouts are most commonly seen big and thick rooted. They are common in Chinese cuisine. Commercial Mung Beans are grown with chemicals and gasses in huge 500 gallon machines. You will never get your home grown sprouts to look like those you see at a restaurant or supermarket, but you can get some thick roots. To do this you will need a sprouter which drains from the bottom (Easy Sprout, SproutMaster, or The Tube, and you'll need to add these procedures to your growing schedule:
•When you Rinse, do not disturb the seeds/sprouts. The beans need to stay where they are - to form a mass that is unmovable. Rinse longer - with lower water pressure (if your sink has a sprayer, use that) during the first 2-3 days - until they are firmly in place.
•Keep your sprouter in as dark a place as you can without limiting air flow too much: Don't put them (or any other sprout) in a closed cabinet or closet, etc. Darkness is a VERY over-rated element in sprouting! Just minimize it by using a darkish corner in your kitchen.
•Apply a weight directly to the beans while in the sprouter (between Rinses). We recommend using an Easy Sprout or two. We fill the Solid Base (of the Easy Sprout that we aren't growing in) full of water and snap the Flat Solid Lid onto it. We then put that Solid Base right on top of the beans between Rinses. You can rig something else if you like - using Easy Sprout or another sprouter.
•On the 3rd day, or when your beans are solidly in place (they won't be budged by water), soak the sprouts for 10-20 minutes in cool water. If you are using Easy Sprout all you have to do is leave the Growing Vessel in the Solid Base (that in which it always sits between rinses) and fill it up. You can do this with The Tube too - using your Solid Brown Lid. If you are using SproutMaster or some other sprouter you can put it in a pot or something else that holds water. Rinse well after this soaking.
•As the sprouts grow you can reduce the weight on them to nothing by the last day. The sprouts themselves form such a tight mass that they apply their own weight.
•You may skip the last Rinse - allowing your sprouts to grow for 24 hours without water. They will generate more heat (which all sprouts do as they grow - at every stage) than usual and can gain substantial mass during this period. There is a slight danger in this - that the sprouts will generate too much heat and will start to slow-cook, but it is a very rare problem. Do it when your house is cool, but avoid it during hot weather.
Experiment! Have Fun! It's All Good!
Your sprouts are done 8-12 (or 24) hours after your final rinse. Be sure to Drain them as thoroughly as possible after that final rinse.
The goal during the final 8-12 hours is to minimize the surface moisture of your sprouts - they will store best in your refrigerator if they are dry to the touch.
Transfer your sprout crop to a plastic bag or the sealed container of your choice - glass is good too - and put them in your refrigerator.

* If using Single Harvest Pack use the whole bag.
We suggest you not exceed 1/2 cup of seeds per quart of sprouter you have, until you are experienced with Mung Beans, but you can THEORETICALLY grow more:
The yield will be approximately 2:1 if you are growing Short & Sweet Mungs, so you can theoretically start with as much as 1/2 as much dry seed as your Sprouter has capacity. This is likely to result in too many sprouts (some will fall out as they grow), but we're talking theory here.
If you are going for Big & Thick Mungs, yield may be as high as 3.5:1. Maxing out your sprouter creates so much mass that it can help your sprouts grow Big and Thick. You can start with dry seed equal to 1/4 of your sprouters capacity, but be aware that they may outgrow your sprouter if you exceed our yield estimate. Don't blame us if you grow so well that some sprouts escape.