Sprouting is an ancient tradition that endured for thousands of years all over the world. Our ancestors mashed sprouted wheat to make some of the earliest forms of bread – it’s even referred to in religious texts. Egyptians made sprouted grain bread as early as 1350 BC and their dry climate meant sprouting (which requires moisture) wasn’t accidental.
Evidence of soaking and sprouting was also found from ancient Africa, Asia, Australia, Europe, South America and the Middle East. This collective wisdom was passed down for centuries but is less common today.
Before modern agriculture, crops often sprouted accidentally from exposure to the elements after harvest. Agricultural advances meant sprouted grains essentially disappeared from our diets.
Sprouting brings ancient cultural practices alive and balances modern food choices with traditional preparation methods. It is now resurging as food prepared in slow, thoughtful and traditional ways continues to grow in popularity.
Sprouting enhances natural flavours and textures of grains. Sprouted foods have richer, more complex tastes and delightful textures.
The sprouting process reduces naturally occurring bitterness (saponin) in wheat. It also converts complex starch into simple sugars, making sprouted grains taste sweeter (though their glycemic index is low). Grains develop lighter, nuttier and more earthy flavours.
When people think of whole grains in baked goods, they tend to think of a heavy dense texture. We specifically sprout and finely stone grind our sprouted whole grain flour to produce light, soft, fluffy, moist baked goods.