Baby Steps: Let’s get soaking!

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For those who missed the intro to this new series on Baby Steps towards natural and healthy living, why don't you read it here?

As I mentioned last time, I sincerely believe that taking small but purposeful steps towards better nutrition and more natural living is the best way to really make the transition, and to allow the changes to "stick" and become long-term, lifestyle changes. This is the way that it has worked for me, and I am so excited to get started on this series and offer some suggestions for those of you who really want to move forward in this direction. Thanks for joining me!

Just before I get going with this week's step, let me quickly explain the way that the basic format for this will work.I am trying to keep these posts relatively short (most will be much shorter than this one) for the simple reason that I want this to be manageable for you. Quick to read, simple to implement, allowing you to achieve success easily!

Each time, I will briefly explain what the baby step is, and why it matters. I will offer some simple suggestions for how you might go about doing it, and sometimes I will offer both a beginner's level as well as a more advanced level for those who are ready for that. I will also provide any reading resources (both online as well as books to buy or check out of your local library), and any online resources (recipes, photos, etc.) that I feel would be valuable to you as well.

From time to time I will also let you know that a Mr. Linky carnival is coming up, because for certain challenges I want to allow you the chance to share with us the changes that you're making! I will try to let you know a week in advance whenever possible, so that you can plan to do the challenge and post it up to share with all of us– I hope that this will offer more encouragement, inspiration and ideas for the rest of us!

So let's get started…

This week's baby step is: Choose one grain recipe that incorporates the soaking (or the two-stage) method and make it sometime within the next week (if you're really eager, you can choose two recipes)!

Why this step is important: Whole grains (ie. those that still have the bran and germ intact, such as whole wheat) contain anti-nutrients, such as phytic acid, which can actually block the absorption of minerals, and can interfere with proper digestion of grains. However, properly prepared grains neutralize phytic acid and other enzyme inhibitors, making whole grains again digestible and a very good source of fiber, vitamins, minerals, protein and other nutrients. In order to do this, grains and/or whole grain flour must be soaked for 12-24 hours in an acidic medium (yogurt, buttermilk, lemon juice, whey, vinegar, etc.) before being used.

How to get started with it: I will provide more reading resources below, as I think that it is really important for you to grasp why this step is so necessary. It would be so helpful to you if you could read at least one or two of the links as a starting place, and ultimately, to purchase a book like Nourishing Traditions with much more in-depth teaching than I can provide you with.

However, in order to keep this simple, I have chosen a good selection of soaking recipes that are online, for you to pick and choose from. All you need to do is look through them, and pick the one that appeals to you the most. It may help to motivate you further by choosing the one that sounds the tastiest or would go over the best with your family (so, if your husband just adores pancakes, choose those; if you really love muffins, you might want to give those a try). Remember, you want this to be positive and successful!

Reading resources:

Books

Nourishing Traditions: The Cookbook that Challenges Politically Correct Nutrition and the Diet Dictocrats

Whole Grain Baking- Sue Gregg

Articles/Blog Posts

Be Kind to your Grains

Nourishing Practices- Soaking Grains

Soaking Grains Part 2

Online resources:

Here's the list of recipes to choose from- surely everyone can find something tasty sounding from this list!

Cornbread

Raspberry Poppyseed Muffins

Spiced Blueberry Coconut Muffins
 Homemade Pizza Crust

Homemade Crackers

Blender Batter Coffee Cake

Blender Batter Pancakes/Waffles

Whole Wheat Bread

Spelt Biscuits

Cinnamon Scones

Oatmeal

I'd love to hear what you choose, and how it goes! If you know of some other great soaking recipes online, please let me know!

About Stephanie Langford

Stephanie Langford has a passion for sharing ideas and information for homemakers who want to make healthy changes in their homes, and carefully steward all that they've been given. She has written three books geared to helping families live more naturally and eat real, whole foods, without being overwhelmed, without going broke and with simple meal planning. She is the creator of Keeper of the Home.

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Comments

  1. Dear Stephanie,
    I am REALLY excited about this series!
    We tried the Raspberry Poppyseed Muffins and the crackers. They both turned out great. Although I did have a hard time with the cracker dough.
    I posted about your series on my blog and added photos of the Muffins and crackers.
    If you want to read it you can find it here;
    Healthy Changes – Soaking Grains
    - Stacy

  2. Ruth Ann says:

    Our pizza crust turned out great!

  3. Ruth Ann says:

    I tried the blender batter pancake/waffles. The recipe allows you to choose the grains and liquids you use for soaking. I used brown rice and rolled oats and buttermilk as my soaking liquid. This combination wasn’t spectacular! This was my first time attempting to soak grains – so I realize that the problem was more likely with my inexperience rather than the recipe itself.

    The batter worked okay for waffles but the pancakes were flat (we prefer fluffy pancakes). I liked the waffles but my kids wouldn’t eat them. They tasted slightly bitter. Also – no matter how long I cooked them – the insides were kind of goo-ey.

    Did anyone else try this recipe? Any advice to share with me?

    I’ve got the pizza dough sitting on the counter now – for supper tonight. I’m praying that this recipe turns out better!!

  4. Ruth Ann says:

    Thank you for these recipes!!!

    I’ve been reading your posts on soaking grains – and the posts over at The Nourishing Gourmet. These recipes look great. I’ll most likely start out with the blender pancake recipe.

    Quick question: where do you buy quinoa? I haven’t found it yet. I’m actually not really sure what I’m looking for!

  5. I’m new to soaking, so I started with soaking my old-fashioned oats for breakfast. I’ve done this once a week for about 3 weeks now. I use yogurt. We like the flavor! Once I get totally comfortable with this, I’ll try something else. Thanks for the encouragement!

  6. Yes, we do this—I guess it has something to do with being raised by grandma:) What a wonderfully written post–Thank you for all the links.:)

    Julieann

  7. Shirley Mom of 6 says:

    THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!!! These recipes look great and are just what I needed to be encouraged to continue soaking!! We are new at grinding fresh wheat and soaking. I haven’t been pleased with how my pizza crusts were turning out, so I’m definitely trying the one you posted, and the muffins look GREAT!! The first muffin recipe I tried a few weeks ago flopped totally!!

    I’m so excited…. I’m actually grinding flour right now, at 9:33 at night so I can get some soaking for bread and the blender batter coffee cake.

    Thanks again for sharing your passion for health and nutrition with us!!

  8. I get my quinoa in bulk (we have a lot of food sensitivities and quinoa is now our favorite grain for breakfast and dinner and even baking) from this site:
    http://www.quinoa.net/
    It cost only a little less than if I get it at the health store.

    However, should I be soaking this grain also??

    Andrea

  9. Hey!
    I found a recipe for soaking brown rice all day… when I read the article, it was the first time I’d heard about soaking, and I was just doing it because it was easier! The rice cooks while I’m at work! But now I’m glad I learned it for the health benefits!
    Here’s the article, she talks about the rice in the last paragraph:
    http://www.greensmoothiegirl.com/blog/?p=109

  10. I am really excited about this series as this is something I am working towards myself. I have already
    “mastered” soaking my steel cut oats the night before I make them, so I’ll make sure to try one of the other recipes this week. Thanks for posting!

  11. I made some awesome breakfast cookies the other day that include soaking the ww flour and oats.

    http://agardenofblessings.blogspot.com/2008/05/lauras-breakfast-cookies-with-soaking.html

  12. We already do this. My gram taught me.
    Thanks!

    Want to see what works for me?
    See here:

    Laane on the World

    Enjoy your day.

  13. Love this, need this! I’ll be back for more.

Trackbacks

  1. [...] Rice – brown, white, cheesy, etc. Rice in the morning, rice under my Thai food, rice in my apple sauce. Rice. (Soaked). [...]

  2. [...] food can be prepared at home in your own kitchen. Think culturing, fermenting, soaking, sprouting, canning, preserving, etc. If it wouldn't be possible to make it in your kitchen, you [...]