The work outside is basically over for the season, so now I have shifted my focus indoors. Eric and I recently rearranged our basement so that we could build a nursery. ( I have discovered it’s very important that I clarify that we built a nursery for our plants, not for children. We realized this term was causing confusion...rightfully so.) I know the nursery is bittersweet for Eric because his music room is now replaced by my plants. All I can say is, I know I’m loved!
Since I love having young children in my life, I figured why not incorporate young plants into my life as well! The nursery is already blooming with my new microgreen operation. For those of you that aren’t very familiar with microgreens, prepare to have your mind blown.
Microgreens are young, and tender, plants that are used in foods to enhance color, texture, and/or flavor. They are commonly used by higher end restaurants yet are also increasing in popularity amongst household kitchens. Microgreens are great additions to salads, soups, sandwiches, smoothies, omelets, or as plate garnishes.
Microgreens are essentially the shoots of vegetables, greens, and/or herbs that are grown until their cotyledons (first leaves of an embryonic seedling) and/or true leaves emerge. They are commonly consumed with the stem as well as the leaf. What’s so amazing about these plants is they taste just like their vegetable. For example, radish micos taste just like radishes and pea shoots taste just like peas!
Microgreens are not to be confused with sprouts or baby greens. They are all different from each other yet tend to be thought of as the same. Sprouts are the youngest and smallest form of the early plant. Microgreens are the next stage of plant development and baby greens form after microgreens. That said, there is no clear definition that can easily distinguish micro from baby greens. Essentially, micros are smaller than baby greens yet larger than sprouts.
Studies have shown that microgreens have a higher nutritional content compared to their more mature counterparts. The added nutritional value is one major perk of these super plants! While not all micro seeds have the same nutritional values, studies showed that on average microgreens had 5 times higher amounts of vitamins and carotenoids (helpful in decreasing the risk of disease in humans) compared to the more mature plant.
Who's ready to try some microgreens?!?! Let me know if you are interested and I would love to have you over for some taste tests, or I can grow some specifically for you.
Your urban farmHer, Jenny