The Sprouting Book by Ann Wigmore and Winter Sprout Salad Recipe to Share

There are three closely related books on sprouting. This is the second one published in 1986 by Avery Publishing Group*. Written by Ann Wigmore, The Sprouting Book is a helpful how-to explanation of getting this living food into your everyday diet.

It’s sub-title How to Grow and Use Sprouts to Maximize Your Health and Vitality underscores a truism about sprouting. Many people come to sprouting because they don’t feel well. Perhaps they crave a time when they were younger and had more vitality; perhaps they have been diagnosed with disease; perhaps they just want that spark back. They search for answers trying first one thing then another until they stumble upon Ann Wigmore’s The Sprouting Book. Her personal journey of transition from ill to well, inspires others to follow.

Some thirty-five years ago, I began my search for a food or combination of natural ingredients that could regenerate and rejuvenate my own ailing body. For years I had suffered with poor digestion, which finally resulted in colitis, a form of intestinal irritation and bleeding. In addition, arthritis was beginning to stiffen my joints and my hair was turning grey.

When Ann proceeds to lay out her findings and how she overcame the above trials, it is a triumphant moment in the book, and it is easy to follow her path. Why suffer? Why not eat and drink what she lays out, at least try, and maybe feel better; maybe even get better.

The book is presented in chapters that help the sprouter navigate this new world. It is a new world because most folks do not grow up in homes with adults who sprout. People teach themselves the techniques and before the internet the most useful tool was a book. Ann’s book touched a nerve with a population in search of something, anything that would make them feel better. Her instructions are easy to follow and can be accomplished at home with little effort and some practice.

She reviews the history of sprouting; what type of disease and unease sprouting will help; the economics of sprouting; shopping for seeds; how to sprout the smaller seeds, beans, and legumes; then on to the larger greens that are her signature go-to method to getting well. The sunnies (black sunflower) and buckies (whole buckwheat) which together with wheatgrass juice form the basis of her program for wellness. All that chlorophyll (the stuff that makes plants green) is sure to have positive action on the body. There is a great chart staring on page 56.

Most interesting point about the book is its relationship to Stephen Blaur’s The Miracle of Sprouting. The illustrations are the same in the two books and there are entire swaths of words lifted from the one book and transported to the other book. A little bit of sprouting community comradery. This book is very much an expansion of The Miracle of Sprouting and it is a fulfilling read with detailed discussions and in-depth steps of the basic how-to methods.

I chose Winter Sprout Salad to share because it is a really cold inside the warehouse.

Winter Sprout Salad

½ cup wheat sprouts (3 days)

½ cup lentil sprouts (3 days)

½ cup alfalfa sprouts

½ cup buckwheat greens

½ cup sunflower greens

½ medium carrot, finely grated

¼ red onion, thinly sliced

Toss all ingredients in a salad bowl. Serve with Parsley-Garlic Dressing as follows:

Parsley-Garlic Dressing

½ cup sunflower sprouts (1 day)

1/8 cup parsley

¼ garlic clove

2/3 cup spring or filtered water

2 tablespoons lemon juice

1 teaspoon tamari

Blend ingredients at high speed to obtain a creamy consistency. (Sprout Lady Rita often uses more parsley, less garlic, and skips the tamari if a stir fry is on the evening menu.)

*The first book in the trilogy is Miracle of Sprouting by Steve Blauer.

Wigmore, Ann. The Sprouting Book. Avery Publishing Group Inc. (Wayne, New Jersey, 1986).