Thursday, January 31, 2008

Sprouts, Figs & Sweater Poop

The mung bean and alfalfa sprouts are ready to go. I'm going to try them in a recipe for Sweet and Sour Bean Sprouts that I found in The New York Times Natural Foods Cookbook by Jean Hewitt.

I discovered 5 more wide mouth jars that will work with my sprouting lids. Yeah! Now I have no excuse not to have continuous sprout harvests. I also discovered that Sproutpeople is offering a stainless steel version of my plastic sprouting lids. Replacing my plastic lids with the stainless steel version is definitely on my to do list.

I also found a sprouting tube that was in with the sprouting lids I picked up at the thrift store last year. Now that I'm moving away from using plastic, I'm not sure if I'll be using the tube or donating it.

This brings me to a revelation I had yesterday. The more I think about it, the more I'm with Chile. I don't give a hoot how Steve Meyerowitz grows his sprouts. For now, I'm content with using jars and I'm having good success with them too! I like trying to time the "harvest" of the sprouts with the meal that evening rather than worrying about storing the sprouts in the fridge to use another day. I'm not suggesting his methods don't work. I'm simply suggesting that his book makes sprouting more complicated than it has to be.

I have an inordinate amount of parsley in the freezer. Truly, its an astounding amount. It seems my best bet to use it up is to make tabbouleh (let me just state for the record that I think tabouleh sets the record for the largest number of possible spellings ever seen in a cookbook. Honestly, I just found it spelled tabooley in the aforementioned NYT Natural Foods Cookbook).

As for the figs, the verdict is still out but check out these websites where I'll be looking for some inspiration. (If you're scratching your head and wondering, why does she need recipes for figs??, remember that sometimes buying in bulk goes wrong and leaves you with a lot of something that you only like a little.)

California Figs

Valley Figs

Here's a Fig Spice Cake that sounds intriguing.

Skinny Fig Bars look good too

These Healthy Fig & Date cookies look so easy, I have to try them.

The Fig Manicotti looks intriguing but I don't think my kids will go for it.

In other frugal news, I've taken apart three sweaters that were headed for the donation bin for various reasons. Instead of unusable sweaters, I now have some very usuable yarn. Ruthie linked up to this great tutorial on how to do it a few months ago. It makes the process so much easier if you know what you're doing.

I can see why the unraveling was done outside in that tutorial. When you unravel inside, you wind up with a bunch of sweater poop on the floor!

I guess it was time to vacuum anyway.


mollyjade said...

Target sells a wonderful kalamata olive-fig tapenade. You may not have lots of olives hanging around, but what about some kind of spread. Maybe with sesame seeds or nuts?

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the fig recipes! We have a HUGE fig tree in our backyard that produces pounds and pounds of them every summer. Now I know what to do with them! :)

Anonymous said...

So impressed with the sprouting! I will give this a go. I usually buy sprouts but you make it look so simple...

Anonymous said...

I LOVE figs! I am jealous of your fig bounty and your sprouting abilities! I need to read up on sprouting so that I am successful this time around and don't get turned off for years again...

Chile said...

Here's a recipe I came up with for figs, Katie.

Chile's Fig Butter

1/2 pound ripe figs
1 1/4 cup water
1/2 c water
1 1/2 c sugar
3/4 tsp ginger
1/4 tsp each: allspice, cinnamon, cloves
2 tsp vanilla

Wash figs, de-stem and quarter.
Simmer in water until soft.
Puree in blender.
Return to saucepan, using additional 1/2 c water to rinse out blender and add to pan.
Stir in sugar and dry spices.
Bring to a gentle boil and simmer for 20 minutes.
Remove from heat and stir in vanilla.

Krista said...

(Warning: lengthy comment)

I've been wanting to sprout since I've seen it here, and imagine my delighted surprise when my dad brought me a sprouting jar last time he visited. But I wanted to make a sprouted quinoa tabbouleh and didn't have enough jar space. What's a frugal lady to do? Use what she has on hand. Here's what I did:

Soak a large amount of quinoa.
Line your colander with cheesecloth.
Pour quinoa into lined colander to drain.
Turn quinoa out onto large jellyroll pan.
Spread out and cover with damp cheesecloth.
Rinse a drain by lining colander again.

Ta-da! A great amount of sprouts for not a great amount of work. And it seemed to me they sprouted faster.

Katie said...

You go Krista! I have to give that a try.