Category Archives: Crunchy Adventures

Sprouts!

Thinking back on my posts, I realized that I’ve spent quite a bit of time nitpicking–whether health myths, roommates, or money costs. So for the next several posts, I’m gonna try my darndest to stay positive!  I’ve also spent more time, in my mind at least, focusing on green instead of crunchy. So I’m going to do my best to focus on both!

In my last post, I mentioned that making things is good for the soul (I’m paraphrasing–today I’m working on my phone instead of the computer, so I can’t go back and quote myself with ease), but I realized I haven’t really done anything lately to make, create, or nurture anything. So I have a new resolution to be more crunchy and create and grow and make!

This week, I grew, for the second time in my life, sprouts! Back when I decided to become green and crunchy, I followed in my mother’s footsteps and bought a bunch of sprout seeds, some muslin (at least, I think it’s muslin), and scrounged up a glass jar and a rubber band. And then I grew sprouts. It was so easy, but this was also when I had an unsupportive roommate that scoffed whenever I did anything mildly out of the “ordinary,” so I was cowed into not doing it again. Okay, enough with the negative. 

Fast forward to the recent past: I was at a health food store and ran across a lid for a mason jar. I excitedly bought it and brought it home. After some searching, I found an old spaghetti sauce jar I’d saved for such a time as this–but, to my dismay, it still smelled like old spaghetti sauce. Old smells indicate old organic matter, which indicates a good growth medium for mold and bacteria. One problem with growing your own sprouts is that you can grow E. coli at the same time, which is why instructions say to rinse your sprouts twice a day (as well as to help keep them from drying out). What was I to do?

Use vinegar! Remember how I said last week that there are several different uses for vinegar but alkalinity isn’t one of them? Well, vinegar is a good disinfectant and deodorizer, and I grabbed my white vinegar and swished some in the jar. Then I rinsed it out (probably a little excessively) because I was paranoid about extra vinegar killing the seeds. It worked like a charm. All scents–old spaghetti and vinegar–were gone! I poured some seeds in the jar, grabbed that special lid, and…

It was too big. It was specially made for large-lipped jars, which I would have noticed if I’d bothered to read the extra large print on the label. I probably have a large mason jar somewhere, but to find one I’d have to get all my roommate’s stuff, then all my stuff, out of storage to search through the multitudes of canning jars my aunt gave to me. So what did I do instead? I searched through my room and eventually found that muslin cloth and a rubber band.


The too-large lid.

I soaked the seeds, accidentally for 24 hours instead of the 8 to 10 hours recommended. Scared that I’d killed the seeds, I drained them, rinsed them, and drained them again. All I could do was wait.

A few days later, I was rewarded for my patience:


You probably can’t see, but there are itty bitty sprouts in there!

And a little over a week after I soaked my seeds for too long, I had a lovely jar of greenery. Of course, I forgot to take a picture before dumping them in a colander for one final rinse, but I did take one final picture:


Yay! Green stuff that I somehow managed to keep alive!

I’ve since placed the sprouts in a baggie and placed them in the fridge, but not before putting some on my salad that I packed for lunch!

While I would love to use the lid in the future, I’m still happy that I was able to successfully grow these seeds, packed full of tasty bite and nutritional goodness. And it’s so easy, I can’t believe I haven’t done it in a year.

Dehydrator Adventures!

Hoo boy, I just read through all my blog posts (it wasn’t hard, as I hadn’t written many), and it’s embarrassing how long it’s been since I’ve done a blog post. I have some excuses, but none of them are very good.  Suffice it to say, only a couple of days after I wrote about running as the greenest form of exercise, I was in a car accident that totaled my car, gave me whiplash, possibly an untreated minor concussion, and required that I buy a gas guzzler as a replacement because (in another unrelated incident) I would have to probably save money for a deposit and a whole month’s rent because my roommate decided to have a mental breakdown and attempted to evict me.  And, to top it all off, my chiropractor banned me from running for several months.

In other words, I wasn’t feeling very green or crunchy, and it was fine by me if the whole world burned.

Continue reading Dehydrator Adventures!

Review: Rosemary Gladstar’s Hot Ginger Balls

In my quest to become greener and crunchier, I have peddled around in educating myself on the use of herbs for medicinal purposes. Some people swear by herbs, saying that if you use herbs you’ll never have to go to the doctor–ever. Me, I see herbs as a first line of defense. If we use herbs properly, then we are more likely to be healthy individuals. However, when you-know-what hits the fan and you catch that superbug or get that ear infection or need that life-saving antibiotic or procedure, doctors are te way to go.

Rosemary Gladstar’s recipe for Hot Ginger Balls, from her book Rosemary Gladstar’s Medicinal Herbs: A Beginner’s Guide, is one of those “I don’t need to go to the doctor but I want relief for something in a natural way” sort of recipe. It is a recipe for making ginger pills to use for upset stomachs, be it general nausea, motion sickness, or those lovely monthly womanly problems. They are made using ginger root powder, cocoa powder, cinnamon, and honey, and the recipe makes about thirty tiny sticky pills (whose stickiness reduces dramatically once they dry).

Continue reading Review: Rosemary Gladstar’s Hot Ginger Balls

Crunchy Adventure: Making Lotion

Every once in a while, I get the urge to be “domestic” and make things from scratch. That usually entails me going to the store to buy supplies, thus going over my weekly food budget on things that I am usually too much of a spend thrift to buy. That happened yesterday, as I realized my favorite “JĀSÖN Revitalizing Vitamin E 5,000 I.U. Moisturizing Crème,” aka thick goopy lotion, would be gone within the week. This troubled me greatly, as I use lotion every morning, night, break, and after several meals, especially in the middle of winter. My family has always told me I have crocodile hands, and my mother has always spoken of the importance of smooth hands for first impressions, especially during job interviews and first dates (though hopefully one does not become the other. That would be awkward). Continue reading Crunchy Adventure: Making Lotion