Sprouting Nuts and Seeds
Have you ever experienced a heavy feeling after eating too many nuts?I really like the flavor of toasted nuts, but sometimes they leave me feeling heavy and with a belly ache. Fortunately, I learned about the benefits of soaking, sprouting and dehydrating nuts and seeds, which makes them not only more digestible, but delicious!
Nuts and seeds contain enzyme inhibitors as well as phytic acid. These enzyme inhibitors make digestion difficult, and phytic acid can bind nutrients, making them unavailable. These nutritional inhibitors and toxic substances found on nuts, seeds and grains are actually designed to protect them from being eaten or from germinating too soon. In nature, when enough precipitation falls to thoroughly wet nuts or seeds (washing off the inhibitors and toxic substances), germination begins. Therefore, soaking them at home, initiating the sprouting process, results in a more easily digested, higher nutrient food. Thus it is as if you’re mimicking nature.
To make nuts and seeds last longer after this process, and taste like a toasted nut, you can dehydrate them on low heat (150 degrees or less to ensure enzyme viability). If dehydrated, they will keep for many months in an airtight container, and are a delicious addition to any salad, a great snack eaten straight from the jar or pureed into a pâté. But, most importantly, they won’t give you a belly ache!
Here is a great pâté recipe from Brenda Cobb of the Living Foods Institute, which can be easily varied to your particular tastes.
Curried Walnut Pâté
- 2 ½ cups raw walnuts (soaked in water 8 hours and drained)
- 1 cup celery minced
- ½ cup red pepper, minced
- 1/2 cup onion or scallion, minced
- 1 tbsp dried basil
- 3 tbsp dried or fresh cilantro
- 1 ½ tsp curry powder
- 1 ½ tsp dried dill
- 1 ½ tbsp tamari or shoyu
- Dash salt or seasoned salt
Mince celery, red pepper and onion or scallion by hand and set aside. Blend soaked and drained walnuts, dried basil, cilantro, dill, curry and tamari in a food processor until finely chopped. Add a little water if needed. Then, take mixture out of food processor and fold in vegetables. Season with salt or seasoned salt to taste. Shape into loaf and decorate with walnut, red bell pepper and parsley and serve.