Viewed 33569 times
Bean sprouts are obtained from the germination of beans. They are tender edible shoots, which protrude from germination. An assortment of beans can be sprouted. However, moong beans are a common and popular choice to make bean sprouts. Moong bean sprouts find their origins in Asia and are commonly used in Chinese cooking. Bean sprouts have a crunchy and a mildly-sweet flavour, which makes it a popular ingredient that can be used raw or semi-cooked. Cooking destroys some of the heat-sensitive vitamin C in bean sprouts. To save it, follow cooking methods like steaming or stir-frying, or serve raw.
How to select
Chopped bean sprouts
Place the bean sprouts with tender shoots on a chopping board. Using a knife, finely chop vertically till you get fine pieces. Chopped bean sprouts are used in making fillings for stuffed dumplings, wontons, Chinese spring rolls, Chinese samosa etc.
• If preparing bean sprouts at home, ensure that you use good quality beans.
• If purchasing bean sprouts from a grocery store, check if the sprouts are fresh, free from dirt and not slimy.
• They should look crisp and not limp.
• Avoid mushy and moist sprouts because they have lost moisture and vitamin C.Culinary Uses
• Bean sprouts are best used raw, so combine with vegetables and dressings of your choice to make salads that will jump-start your day.
• Stir fry with zucchini, broccoli, baby corn and spices to make a crisp accompaniment to main courses. You may also add Chinese flavorings like soya sauce, salt and white pepper to enhance the taste.
• Toss with steamed rice, butter and garlic to make healthy yet delicious rice.
• Add to soups, gravies, stews as required to nutritionally boost the recipe.
• Use chopped bean sprouts to make fillings for steamed wontons, spring rolls, parathas, noodle rosti etc.
• In Chinese and Thai cuisine, it is added to noodles, chopsueys, etc. It is a primary ingredient in Pad Thai, a traditional Thai food that is basically stir-fried rice noodles cooked with fish sauce, tamarind juice, eggs and a combination of shrimps, tofu or chicken and bean sprouts, and garnished with peanuts and coriander. How to store
• Pack the bean sprouts in zip-lock or plastic containers and refrigerate. Use within two days. Health benefits
• Bean sprouts are low in calories, making them suitable for weight-watchers and others on a low-cal diet.
• It is a good source of vitamin A, with antioxidant properties that neutralize free radicals in the body that cause tissue and cellular damage.
• Bean sprouts are a good source of dietary fiber.
• They are an excellent source of vitamin C, with anti-oxidant properties that help combat cold, improve eyesight and reduce risk of cancer.