One of the big (?) products at Chef’s Garden, Inc. is microgreens. While you might typically think of bean sprouts and other sprouted seeds, microgreens cover much wider ground. They include items like micro-arugala and various types of basil, pea sprouts, mints, and even sweet corn shoots. They also sprout some seeds in the dark to produce a pale, and differently flavored version.


What microgreens bring to the plate is flavor — incredibly intense bursts of flavor. The arugala we tasted popped in your mouth like a little piece of mustardy fire. You wouldn’t want large portions of this in your salad, but much like adding a chopped chili there is a capriciousness that beings a new level to your dishes.

Do it yourself!

Watching their large operation, it struck me that nearly anyone could produce their own microgreens at home. It takes a little care, and is a little intensive, but I think it could easily be done. It might be something special you could do for a party or event.

As you can see, the containers are planted quite densely, as you aren’t intending to let any of the plants grow to full size. You are going to harvest them with scissors within a week or so of them sprouting. If you like, you could also then transplant some of the sprouts into larger pots and grow them to full size, so you don’t feel as if you are “wasting” anything.

With the kids

I could see this as a great project for kids, too, as it produces results in just about a week. You can go from container to plate in a time frame that most kids can understand and appreciate. The intense flavors of the greens have a purity and a strength that might even be able to compete with the usual diet of sugary sodas, sour candies and snack foods. You might give your kids a new “extreme food” to share with their friends. (SMILE)

You don’t need to be an A-Level chef to appreciate what microgreens bring to the plate. As a gardener, you can easily give it a try right in your own backyard.

Check out my Flickr Photostream for more picture from my Ohio Trip to Chef’s Garden, the Culinary Vegetable Institute and Troy-Bilt, Inc.

Join me in Northridge, California this Saturday for Troy-Bilt product demos and gardening Q&A.

Disclosure: This post is in conjunction with my paid partnership as one of the Saturday6 from Troy-Bilt. All thoughts are my own.