Celi Diet: growing good food in subzero temperatures

Yes, yes I know what you are about to say.  Just last week I would not even admit that autumn/fall was on its way, let alone begin to talk about winter.  Now I am heralding  the plummet, discussing sub zero temperatures, when only yesterday I was talking about a gypsy summer. What is she like. I can hear you say. Yes I heard that too!

Well, I am distracted. I am writing you a wee story and it is not ready. So I am popping this wee very important post in between. I will send your story into your little boxes tomorrow. It is another one of those little memories. It has been shuffling about in the front of my brain, peering down into my eyes, lifting my eyelids with its naughty little fingers and getting in the way of my REAL writing: that embryo Book. So out it must come. You may all thank yourselves that I have begun my true writing of The Book, at last. It is because of the  constant washing in encouragement  from my blog family that I have taken that shuddery breath and  finally started the Real Work. 

So today we are going to look at one of the best winter vegetables that you can grow at home when it is howling with winter outside. Winter makes me shudder. I am not built for the cold. Not the cold that we face out here on the plains anyway.  In the winter I will be sending you photographs of Daisy with her eyelashes covered in sparkling ice. Blinking and clinking.

So to Beansprouts.  We can all grow them. Just get a lid with holes in it.  And a nice clean jar. Pour some organic dry sprouting beans  into the bottom of the jar, usually I use the blue Ball Jars but the beans do not photograph as well through the blue! I love to eat Mung Beans but almost any seed will sprout, just ensure that they are specifically packaged as food. Cover with water and leave overnight. Drain.

I sit my jar on the kitchen bench with a TeaTowel draped over it. Rinse the beans  two or three times a day, leaving them to drain upside down in between. No sitting them in standing water except for the first night.

You can start munching on them once they sprout. You choose how long you will let them grow. Then into the fridge.  Beansprouts are live food so eat them soonest rather than latest. I usually have two jars going in succession. Once they have sprouted they really need to be consumed or refrigerated soon after. 

Quite possibly the cleanest and best food you can eat.  They go with everything. Massively better for you than dried seeds. High in Vitamins C, K and Folate. Plus Protein and of course fiber.  On a personal note I would not buy sprouts in a supermarket. I grow them myself and  store them in the refrigerator for up to three days. It is safer.

See you tomorrow!


65 Comments on “Celi Diet: growing good food in subzero temperatures

  1. We used to do a lot of sprouting, it goes in phases. Made a fabulous bread using fresh sprouts and grains and orange juice that we used to love too but that wouldn’t be in your current remit so I’ll keep quiet about it 🙂

    • wow Joanna, when I am back to the bread scoffing (in small portions) i shall get back to you about that loaf, it sounds divine! c

  2. I am so glad to read that you’re writing a book — and Zia will be happy to hear it, too. She loves your writing but, then again, we all do. So, just to keep things straight, this Spring, you and Daisy will be delivering wine, cheese, and now a book. I hope we have an early thaw …

  3. I hope ChgoJohn is right, but I guess that means you and Daisy will have a BIG tour to be making! Don’t forget to bring the sprouts along too. 😉

  4. I’m very excited that you’re writing a book. I still think about that story you wrote recently about cooking for the elderly. It just touched me so. 🙂 I’m looking forward to more! And we made that Welsh rarebit you asked about – yum!

    • Oh thats right.. your adventures into welsh food! I have another story for you tomorrow.. so drop back in if you have time.. c

  5. Oooooooo writing a book! Hurrah! Now in the meantime what does a body have to do to get some honey? 🙂 I used to eat sprouts all the time but lost interest in them for some reason. Great pics t

    • Thanks Miss T. Sprouts come and go with me too. I just forget to make them anymore. I tend to get into them when there is nothing much fresh around.. Like soon.. c

  6. My wife does a lot of sprouting for our salads and such. Have you ever tried sunflower sprouts? I much prefer them to most other types. Winter cold isn’t so bad for us anymore, only gets to zero once or twice a winter. We lived in Craig, Colorado for 10 years and one winter we had a week of 50 below zero. It got up to 20 below in the daytime. Brrrrrrr! Looking forward to the book! 🙂

    • No i have not tried sunflowers sprouts but I will now. they are my favourite seeds, And how could you possibly live in 50 below, that is outrageous.. I am so glad you don’t live there anymore! terrifyingly cold to a little Kiwi like me! c

    • Oh I would love to go to canada i will mention that to my agent.. oh drat.. i haven’t got one yet!! Ok back to the writing.! c

  7. We sprouted seeds last Spring for the Girl Scout troup that I lead – it wasn’t the most successful. I should try your mung bean suggestion. Oh, and as for you writing a book: HORRAY!!!!!! I can’t wait to read it!

    • Yes do try it again Gretchen, mung beans are very reliable to sprout and ted tells me sunflower seeds are good too!.. c

  8. I’m going to have to try this with my crew. We have a few houseplants and a teeny weeny windowsill garden for kitchen herbs, but nothing that is actually “food” growing around our house when the cold comes. I think I’ll set them each up with their own little jar to sprout, and then let them help me make salads with imported greens. Yum!

    • That is a great idea Desi, remember to drain them upside down between washings (the kids will love washing them) .. so they do not get waterlogged and rot.. and the exciting thign for kids is that they can wash them as often as they want, as long as they are gentle.. c

  9. You are so fabulous! These are just the thing to keep my little one growing things all winter! My spout spouts, as it were….And wishing you all good things for The Book

  10. I’m soo not Beansprouts fan lol, but it’s interesting to see how you care for them. And I’m so excited you’re writing a book. That is absolutely amazing. Congrats! And I know I would love to read it

    • Sprouts go off very quickly if handled incorrectly. They need to be properly stored and properly labelled, if they sit out in the warm more than three days after sprouting they may develop salmonella if there has been contamination along the way. I just prefer to make my own, in my own clean kitchen, with my own clean hands and then I have more leeway and no risk of contamination. c

  11. Haven´t sprouted beans for ageas – what a great idea! Am so pleased you are writing The Book! I did too…still no publisher for me (don´t think you´ll have that problem) but wow, the satisfaction when it was done 🙂

    • i have no idea how to do the next but though tanya, The writing will take me a while of course but i am more terrified of trying to find an agent and then a publisher.. I don’t even know what the process is. And you are a great writer, maybe you should send it out again! c

  12. Bean sprouts, yum! It looks like you are growing a combo of bean, lentil, and soy, am I right? I used to grow a similar combo but had adzuki beans instead of the soy.

    My favs are broccoli sprouts because they are such a nutritional powerhouse. I also like to add a little radish for a nice tangy kick!

    Any you’re right growing at home is the best way. Much fresher, tastier, and a lot cheaper.

    • Safer too i think. Now I shall have to get in some more seeds, I have read about the brocolli seeds, they sound good! c

  13. Write on!
    Seed sprouts, now that is something I have never thought of. No questions are dumb in my book so here comes one! Go easy on me everyone. Where do you get said seeds mentioned in your text and your readers? Are they just the same as what you would put in the ground? Okay, that’s two. My common sense here says yes. But like I said above I haven’t thought about it before. Always willing to try something new to me and fresh growth during the cold months sounds good!

  14. Look above you harold and you will see a comment from a site called sprouting seeds. They sell them! your timing is amazing. Only sprout seeds that are packaged for sprouting or eating or there may be nasty chemicals. I am going to try to sprout some sunflower seeds next! That might be interesting. But i am definitely going to buy from the guys above too.. they just popped in out of the blue! Never sprout the seeds that you are putting in the ground, they are the same seeds but the ground ones may have been treated.. best not to.. AND all questions are good! I have a few plumbing ones for you soon..!.. c

      • That would be great Harold. i will be needing help with any ideas on installing an outdoor bath and shower !! Using solar water heating but not buying a fancy rig. c

  15. I really want to try this! I love fresh sprouts. My problem is that I don’t know where to get them from in China. Might have to get mum to send some up from Oz. I miss growing my own food. 🙂

    And thumbs up for starting on your book! We all love reading your work, so you have a fan base already. 🙂

  16. Yihuuuuuuuuuu! I am so happy to hear this dear Cecilia, Good Luck for your book! Angels and muses be with you! It will be one of my best books, I am sure. Do you know we were doing these sprouts in the school when I was a little girl, it was a kind of project. But I haven’t thought this idea in my kitchen to do. This is so nice and yes, so healthy too. Why didn’t I make this… Thank you, dear Cecilia, you are so nice, everyday I note something to my notebooks. Your photographs are amazing too, well captured. Greetings and Love from a rainy, cold and dark Sunday and yes Blessing for Daisy, with my love, nia

  17. Wonderful photos… your “through the glass” shots are amazing! I sprouted a few kinds of seeds/beans over the summer and enjoyed the “nuttiness” of the flavors – mmm!

  18. Seed sprouting…I used to do this when I lived in London and am now inspired to get this going again as the dark evenings draw in and less time is spent in the gardens. Again, brilliant pics!

  19. Beautiful photos. Wonderful writings. Back when I was a hippie I used to grow sprouts. (Wait, I’m still a hippie!) I still have my jar. Your post is sending me out to get mung beans immediately and try it again! Can you share some of your all time sprouting seed favs? I have also been thinking about trying a few flats of micro salad greens under lights I’ve got rigged up on my two large living room window seats. From you I am learning much. Thanks!

    • Mung beans are my favourites but they say broccoli are the ones to grow, I would have to get the seeds on the internet though.. I have ming beans on the go all the time in the winter, I am also thinking about micro greens, so i am interested to see how you get on with those!! I have a good window too! c



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