"Your body is the first thing any child of man ever wanted. Therefore dispose yourself to be loved, to be wanted, to be available. Be there for them with a vengeance. Be a gracious, bending woman. Incline your ear, your heart, your hands to them.... To be a Mother is to be the sacrament - the effective symbol - of place. Mothers do not make homes, they are our home." from Bed and Board, Robert Farrar Capon

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Swamped By Soaking

Between the laundry thing and the whole foods from scratch thing,
I'm swamped.

So are all my counter tops.

Just when I thought I was being a super awesome healthy mom (and so proud of my tired self ;) for grinding all my flour fresh for all my bread items for the past few months, I get the memo that soaking your grains first is actually needed for the break down of the phytic acid in the grains that inhibit enzymes needed for digestion and vitamin and mineral absorption and all that good stuff.

Yeah, who knew?
Well, I guess all kinds of people do, all over the world! And many others used to know.
But for the majority of modern Americans, like me, a vast knowledge of healthy ways of eating, cooking, baking, and living was lost in generational translation somewhere along the line. But never fear! We can recover it, slowly, steadily, and happily.

I'm just beginning to learn about sprouting grains and nuts, and even some legumes.  And then there's fermenting! Worlds within worlds, I'm telling you.

So on my counter and stove top at this moment I've got black beans soaking (for the next day or two, breaking down the sugars in them that cause gas and bloating and give beans a bad name) to be cooked all day for dinner Thursday night.

I've got the starter and the sponge for some whole wheat bread that's been soaking since yesterday that I'm going to bake pretty quick here.

I mean, when the laundry's done.

Or maybe not.

And last but not least I've got nuts soaking for my grainless granola (which I will be hopefully posting soon on my food blog).  You'll like it.  I promise!  (Ok, I don't promise.)

A whole lot of soaking going on.
Now off to the laundry room.  Cheers!


  1. Your counters look like mine - scattered with bowls of soaking grains and beans. I'm glad we are learning about these new (or actually old) ways to be healthy. I think it will get easier the more keep doing it.

  2. 5 year plan... 5 year plan...

  3. what Jane said. I've known about the soaking stuff for almost 8 years now, but sometimes that sourdough starter on the counter or soaking beans on the stove sort of gets forgotten, and then ferments in a bad way...or I forget about my homemade yogurt in the crock pot and it burns up...and then I just buy my bread and yogurt :)

    My husband is a patient man for walking past A MOUNTAIN of potential compost* all winter. It looks nicer when it's covered in snow, so it's a good thing we're getting 3 more inches tonight

    *also known as rotting garbage

  4. Exactly Jane! "Five Year Plan" would be a great title for my next post, the one I started changing this post into, in the draft section about half hour ago, after reading it again and thinking there's bound to be someone reading it feeling all bad about the overwhelmingness of it all. Then I felt overwhelmed trying to write it all and make dinner and get my soaked bread dough into the pans, so I chucked the changes. Sigh.

    It never ends.

    Yes, five year plan.

    Katy - Wow, you're ahead of us all! :D
    I just ordered some yogurt starter and bought some raw milk to try it out on this week (hopefully). My last sourdough starter attempt turned into a gross mass of something unrecognizeable after a month or so. I have no idea what I did wrong. Or right. That was about a year ago. I haven't attempted it since. But I'm planning on trying that again sometime again here soon. As soon as I can clear of some counter space.

    Now, off to the bread. Again. :)

  5. I sent this to Leah privately and she asked me to post it .... I've read pros and cons of soaking ( being a soaker myself ) here is a site with some cons ... I like it mainly because of the references at the end

  6. Cool information, hansjenny. I actually have never soaked grain, but I do buy sprouted wheat English muffins. And I am finally making my own bread about every other day (so YOU, Leah, are way ahead of me, since you are the Baking [cookies] Queen). I did the sourdough starter twice (and one didn't work).

    My husband has diabetes, and the glycemic index is lower in sprouted/soaked grains. So that's my excuse to jump on the trendy whole foods bandwagon.

    As for laundry...HA!

  7. I make my yogurt this way. Every other week someone eats up the last 1/2 cup, then I have to buy some more. I would save so much money if we had more yogurt self-discipline around here.


  8. Great link Katy, thanks! I like the crock pot plan more than the insulated cooler plan. (Who wants to go find a cooler right now?) So as soon as I get my soakin' beans out of the crock pot, I can get soaked in yogurt. :P

  9. Since we don't do grains I read that if you do soak your nuts before you use them, you need to dehydrate them before actually using them for things, but with most nuts it's not a necessity. Just my 2 cents and by the way, I can't wait to try your grainless granola, so in all your spare time... ��

  10. And here I thought I was doing good remembering to take care if the dirty baby clothes I had soaking before they turned into something "unrecognizable". Ah well. Baby steps

  11. Mary, I go through cycles...cycles of doing a lot, then crashing and just trying to survive "dinner, duds and dishes" I have thrown out some stained clothes because I did not stay on top of laundry, yes (and not stained with the original food or poop stuff, with mold from sitting in a pile too long in my basement--yikes!)

  12. I can't tell you how great it is to read these real comments. It's such a relief to me! Women soak, wash, make, bake, sew, give birth and appear to smile through it all when we simply read what they write. It makes me miss the visits I had with friends in living rooms, before we moved, when we would talk real life. I appreciate knowing that others fail and start over just like me. Please, keep this going!