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Sunflower Sprouts


Anna Blume
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Living high amidst the Rocky Mountains, I grew fond of sunflower sprouts that at least one source let you clip yourself.

For the most part, I do not appreciate tangles of alfalfa or radish sprouts, often soggy and browning or liquifying in little green plastic baskets that evoke the elongated cellophane-wrapped containers of flavorless tomatoes some of us grew up eating.

Please don't advise me to grow my own. I know how to kill jade plants.

Is there any place that sells sunflower sprouts around here that I've overlooked?

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Think of sprouts as micro greens, and you're no longer a hippie, you're avant garde! :o

Or has the micro green trend peaked already?

At any rate, sprouts would be nice, but what I want is a good, not too expensive, source of sproutable seeds to make my own. Not bean sprouts, but vegetable sprouts like broccoli and beets, and seed sprouts like your sunflower sprouts.

It's not that hard using a mason jar and a lid with a screen on it. Rinse and drain morning and night.

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At any rate, sprouts would be nice, but what I want is a good, not too expensive, source of sproutable seeds to make my own. Not bean sprouts, but vegetable sprouts like broccoli and beets, and seed sprouts like your sunflower sprouts..
Have you looked at Johnny's Selected Seeds? Click. :o
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Have you looked at Johnny's Selected Seeds? Click. :o
Didn't think of Johnny's. Their garden seeds are excellent.

SproutPeople has a bigger selection but I don't know anything about them.

Speaking of being an old hippie, back in the day, your local health food store would special order things for you and you could pick them up the next week. If you asked, "do you have such-and-such", they'd say, "no but I can have it for you next week if you'd like to place an order."

Do places like that still exist?

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Very funny--and helpful--replies, you all!

Since I'm on a yogurt-making kick, I suppose I can put on my Birkenstocks and sprout some seeds. However, sunflower sprouts are rather thick and don't strike me as being suitable for Mason jars. Alfalfa used to leave a pair of scissors next to large plastic trays in the produce section for customers to snip off the amount they wanted to buy.

* * *

Isn't there a food co-op in Takoma Park?

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I'm going to be at the Takoma Park-Silver Spring Co-op this afternoon, and I'll check to see what sprouts they carry and report back. Whenever I am asked if there are any foods I DON'T like, the only two I can come up with are tripe and alfalfa sprouts--and not just in the same dish. Where the sprouts are concerned, I'm going to have to agree with my paternal grandfather, who is reported to have said: "You feed that grass to a cow, and I'll eat the cow," when he was offered a green salad. Radish sprouts aren't bad, but why not just eat radishes? I must admit that I have not to my knowledge eaten sunflower sprouts. And I was a hippie.

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Whenever I am asked if there are any foods I DON'T like, the only two I can come up with are tripe and alfalfa sprouts--and not just in the same dish.
Zora, I feel your pain on both accounts. The reference to Alfalfa above is the name of one of the last remaining "natural food" (I can't figure out whether I cringe more at the term or the use of quotation marks. sorry) chains that hasn't been swallowed by WFM. I assure you that sunflower sprouts are utterly different, better than the seeds, too.
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Yesterday afternoon at the Takoma Park Co-op, there were alfalfa sprouts, broccoli sprouts, "spicy" sprouts--radish presumably--and a melange of barely sprouted beans, peas and lentils. They were all packaged in small plastic boxes and were all from the same outfit in Pennsylvania. I didn't have it together enough to write down the name of the supplier, though. I'll try to do that next week, or I suppose you could call the co-op and ask, and you could contact them and see if they do sunflower sprouts--maybe they could ship some to you if they do.

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I was in the neighborhood so made a side trip to Takoma Park Co-op and Glut Co-op looking for sprouting seeds (which is not what Anna asked for, yes).

Neither had much, basically alfalfa seeds. Both had actual sprouts and, sorry, didn't even look at them, although later I was kicking myself for not at least taking note of the prices.

Last week I did find sprouting seeds and a sprouting jar at the Healthway store in Fairfax City. The prices did not seem reasonable but the large packages probably make a slew of sprouts. I tore the price tags off to keep my husband from hitting the ceiling, so can't tell you what they cost, but Healthway is more expensive than even Whole Foods. (They also have bulk herbs, as does TPSS and Glut.)

One pound of Five Bean Sprouting Mix (azuki, lentils, red & green mung and soybeans), one pound of Zesty Sprouting Mix (clover seeds, alfalfa seeds, fenugreek seeds and radish seeds), four ounces of broccoli seeds, and a sprouting jar, total $25 with tax.

Things I already have in my pantry -- yellow mustard seeds and citric acid (sour salt) (use to keep sprouts from going bad).

Have yet to find sprouting pumpkin seeds locally. Wonder if this item as packaged for bird feed would do? It may not be USDA approved or whatever, but it's unlikely to be treated with bad things that kill birds, so probably safe for humans.

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