|The stuff only looks peaceful|
The sub sandwich chain Jimmy John's (a favorite with my 2nd grader) recently announced they would be switching to clover sprouts from alfalfa, following a widespread Salmonella outbreak linked to the innocuous-looking little buggers. Clover sprouts might not do it, though, because they themselves have been tied to outbreaks in the Pacific Northwest.
And even if you get Salmonella-free alfalfa, soon we will have to be careful that it's not genetically-modified (read Roundup-resistant). Instead of blocking GMO-alfalfa altogether, now the USDA and courts are niggling over what sorts of restrictions to place around it and how to prevent GMO-alfalfa from contaminating organic alfalfa. Check this Food Safety News article for the details. You might hate sprouts and think yourself not impacted, but our dear dairy cows love the stuff, meaning you will be eating the sprouts sooner or later. I'll be very interested to talk to our dairy farmers when the Market opens in May to get their opinion on this.
In the meantime, I'm sticking with my Organic Valley dairy products. They issued a statement this morning clarifying their position on the sprout schism (duh--they came out against).
If you do happen to love the fresh crunch of sprouts in salads and sandwiches, may I recommend you grow your own lentil sprouts? (Thank you to Janette for teaching me this.) I have zero green thumb and can't even grow my own herbs, but I can manage lentil sprouts. Which means you can manage lentil sprouts.
(4) Whenever the lentils look dry, add water and drain. I do it at least once per day.
(6) When the sprouts look like sandwich- and salad-size, they're ready to eat. (You can tell I just started this project a couple days ago, so I don't have a picture of the finished product yet.) I usually refrigerate them, once they're "done."
Voila. Salmonella-free and non-genetically-modified. Happy organic farming!