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<p>I've been reading all over MDC about both, but I can't find good resources on the net and my WAP books haven't come in at the library. I want to know why they are beneficial and some how-tos. Where do I start with the learning?</p>
 

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<p>In brief, the phosphorus in grains, beans and nuts is tied up in phytic acid.  You cannot absorb and break down phytic acid in your gut, and it binds itself to the minerals you consume, so that you do not absorb some of your calcium, zinc, etc.  Soaking, sprouting, or fermenting neutralizes the phytic acid so that you can absorb the phosphorus and the rest of your minerals better.</p>
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<p>Basic soaking (grains and beans): Use 1 at least T of acid (whey, kefir, yogurt, lemon juice, vinegar, etc) per cup of soaking water.  If using flour, use at least 1 T of acid per cup of wet ingredients.  Soaking causes fermentation to a certain degree.</p>
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<p>Recommended soaking time:</p>
<p>-rice, most beans: 7 hours</p>
<p>-oats: 48-72 hours</p>
<p>-other grains: 12 hours</p>
<p>-soy: only eat if fermented (shoyu, tempeh, miso)</p>
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<p>For nuts, use salt instead of acid, and soak overnight.  There is some debate over which nuts should be soaked.  The general consensus is that walnuts, pecans, and almonds should be soaked, and there's less consensus on many other nuts.  Dry in a warm oven or dehydrator.</p>
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<p>Sprouting gets the enzymes active and deactivates the anti-nutrients and enzyme inhibitors that keep a seed dormant.  This also increases their nutrient value.  Different seeds take different amounts of time to sprout.  Generally, soak them overnight in filtered water, rinse and strain.  Keep them moist but not water logged in a jar or sprouting container where the water can drain out.  Rinse every 4, 6 or 12 hours (depending on who you ask) to keep them moist and fresh until they sprout or until the sprouts reach the desired size.</p>
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<p>Fermenting veggies is a more complicated process.  It increases the nutrient value, preserves the veggies for storage in the refrigerator or cool basement.  It also forms a probiotic with many beneficial bacteria and yeast colonies.  There are different recipes, and I highly recommend the book "Wild Fermentation" to know what to do with each vegetable.  Generally, vegetables are cut or shredded and combined with water and salt and often whey or a starter culture, weighed down under the solution, and wait until "ripe."</p>
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<p>Other ferments include sourdough, kefir, yogurt, kumbucha, and more.  I hope that helps as a very brief primer.</p>
 

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<p>Of the nuts I eat regularly, brazil nuts are the only controversial one, so most of my research is on them.  I found out that <a href="http://www.thenourishinggourmet.com/2010/09/phytic-acid-in-nuts-seeds-cocoa-and-coconut.html" target="_blank">here</a> that brazil nuts are actually pretty high in phytic acid, compared to a lot of other nuts, seeds, and grains.  However, sources such as <a href="http://www.veggiewave.com/soaking_chart" target="_blank">this</a> recommend that you don't soak them and certain other nuts.  The best answer as to why that I have found is that <a href="http://www.living-foods.com/articles/sprouting.html" target="_blank">this page</a> claims that there is little difference between soaked and unsoaked fatty nuts.  Still, I find other people who say they soak them just in case.  I think it's also possible that the fats in some of these nuts could be damaged by roasting them or drying them after soaking, so if there's little difference, it's probably better to just leave them alone.  Other people say that they soak them anyway, just in case it helps.  For myself, I only eat one brazil nut a day, keep small amounts in the fridge, and don't soak them.</p>
 

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Discussion Starter #5
<br><br><div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">Originally Posted by <strong>JMJ</strong> <a href="/community/forum/thread/1285210/help-me-learn-more-about-sprouting-and-fermenting#post_16117934"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a><br><br><p>For myself, I only eat one brazil nut a day, keep small amounts in the fridge, and don't soak them.</p>
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<br><br><p>OK, now I have to ask why you only eat 1 brazil nut per day...</p>
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<p>Thank you for the info JMJ! I expected someone to slap up a link and say here you go, so thank you!</p>
 

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<p>Not a problem, though do look through some of the links in my last post because they do give a little more information on specific seeds.  I eat 1 Brazil nut a day because it contains about 100% of my daily value of Selenium.  As a breastfeeding mother planning another pregnancy, that is very important for me.  My husband also eats one because the Selenium promotes prostate health.  There are many health gurus recommending Selenium supplements for these and other reasons, but I would rather eat one Brazil nut than take a pill.</p>
 

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<p>This is a great subject! I am curious where the soaking times came from? I have to soak wild rice 24-48 hours so my son doesn't react after nursing. I would also second Wild Fermentation. Sandor Katz is amazing.</p>
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<p>A great place to start with fermenting is with a grain or mother I found. Kombucha was where I really started after failing miserably with sauerkraut 2 or 3 times.</p>
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<p>I have since learned that a lot of this is trial and error because even when you do have good resources (which are hard to find!) they never are from your next door neighbor who has been living in your area and fermenting for years. And unfortunately, that would be the best resource. So much plays a roll in what is going on in our fermented foods and environment is a big part of it. I have a miserable time making pickles because I live in the mid-Atlantic and don't have a cool enough spot during the time of year my pickling cuckes are ready.</p>
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<p>I am still learning about sprouting grains, nuts and seeds. There is a lot of info in the raw vegan world on this. The Sprout People also have a lot of info! I just watched a video on sprouting wheat because I was attempting to make sprouted flour. I now have my first bath in the dehydrator and will have sprouted flour for the holiday that I don't have to pay a ton for.</p>
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<p>Good Luck!</p>
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<p>Peace,</p>
<p>Wysteria</p>
 

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<p>Refrigerator pickles are naturally fermented, and you can find lots of recipes if you google that. This was my second year to make them with the cukes my neighbors gave me. Much easier than canning. I also found a recipe in a reprint of a pamphlet put out by George Washington Carver in the 30s, which had a recipe for "Cold tomato relish." It's essentially a refrigerator pickle, which I think lots of people would probably be scared to try, but it was simple and easy and I just ate some this week, which I had put in the fridge in Aug. Tastes like fresh tomatoes. Let me know if you want the recipe. I tried another one this year from Chinese Vegetarian Cookery. It's a recipe you can use with whatever veges you have, and much saltier than Western pickles. That one is more for chopping up and adding as a seasoning.</p>
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<p>Mostly I started these because I want to preserve vegetables from summer. Trying really hard to eat local as much as possible, but in Aug I just can't bring myself to commit a day to sweating over the stove. Natural fermentation is so much simpler, and actually improves the benefits of the food, as opposed to cooking it all away. Haven't read Sandor Katz's book, but was really inspired by an interview with him in The Sun. Somebody get me the book for Christmas, okay?</p>
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<p><a href="http://www.thesunmagazine.org/issues/413/countertop_culture" target="_blank">http://www.thesunmagazine.org/issues/413/countertop_culture</a></p>
 
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