Sprouts and More Gluten Free Breads

On Friday, Chef Alicia had several jars of sprouts ready for us to taste and she assigned us the job of growing some sprouts of our very own.

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Why Sprouts?

Sprouts are eaten raw and they are a truly living food. Sprouts are not only alive, but they are VERY alive and growing. They are nutrient dense and full of chlorophyll, which is only one molecule different from human blood. Sprouts are emergent plants, so they have to be full of nutrients to survive and rapidly grow, which means by eating them you get to enjoy the health benefits of those nutrients.

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Below: A class assistant is preparing a raw version of parmesan cheese made from pine nuts, lemon juice, and nutritional yeast. I tasted some and it was amazingly similar to the genuine article.

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Below: A peppermint, chlorella, spirulina drink that Chef Alicia shared with us. After drinking, I lifted a car above my head.

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Below: Chef Alicia explaining the process of sprouting and assigning us our very own seeds and beans to sprout.

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Below: Some fenugreek sprouts we sampled.

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Below: Planting wheatgrass sprouts into fresh organic soil.

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Gluten Free Baking Lab 2

We followed our lecture on sprouts with a lab session on gluten free baking. We Natural Epicurean students did GF baking last Friday, too, with Chef Jean Brooks. This time we were with a couple of Natural Epicurean graduates – Lou and Brenda – who are gluten-free baking pros. (I wrote about Lou’s gluten-free bread business, True Nature’s Child, in one of my first blog posts. Lou has been going strong at the Downtown Farmer’s Market since that day and shows no signs of slowing down.)

Below: Lou (right) talks over the intricacies of gluten-free baking over a couple of fresh baked loaves.

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Below: Some gluten free muffins cooling below.

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Below: Our gluten free bread cooling and ready for final tasting. My favorite was the pine nut-fennel version at left. Using a smaller bread loaf pan seems to help prevent the bread from deflating, like the ones second and third from left.

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