Thursday, March 24, 2011

Practically Raw Sprouted Corn Tostadas

Here's something very delicious to make for lunch that whips up in a jiffy and features a brand NEW! product I tried for the first time today: organic Sprouted Corn Tortillas from the Food For Life Baking Company (makers of Ezekiel bread, sprouted grain bagels, sprouted whole wheat tortillas, etc.)

Sprouted grain products are valued for many reasons. Grains are seeds and when they are sprouted, their nutritional value often goes up. The sprouting process initiates the breakdown of protein and carbohydrate compounds in the grains, releasing bound amino acid and sugar components and freeing up nutrients. In this sense, sprouted grains are essentially "pre-digested," to a degree. Another benefit of sprouting is that natural anti-nutrients in grains, such as phytates and protease enzyme inhibitors, are also broken down and degraded in the sprouting process. Finally, sprouting makes grains more alkaline, helping them to favor a preferential pH balance in the body.

All soaked and sprouted grains, as well as sprouted beans and seeds, will offer the above benefits. Sprouting, however, does not remove gluten, a gluey protein that is found in wheat, spelt, rye, and barley. Gluten sensitivity is a rising problem around the world with an estimated 30-40% of people affected. Any food which is made from wheat or any gluten-containing grain, even healthy sprouted Ezekiel bread, still contains gluten.

Corn, on the other hand, is a gluten-free grain. Some people are allergic to corn, but gluten intolerance is not linked to corn allergies, so having a sensitivity to one does not implicate the other. Corn is an ancient New World grain that was sacred to American Indian tribes. Although modern corn has been abused in many ways by agribusiness and industrial development, corn itself is still a high value food, especially when it is organic corn grown in nutrient-rich soils and free of genetically modified organisms.

Delicious Food for Life Sprouted Corn Tortillas are made with only four ingredients: organic sprouted corn, filtered water, sea salt and lime. According to the company, after the corn is sprouted it is ground and mixed with the other ingredients to form a masa, or traditional thick dough, which is then rolled and flattened into characteristic tortilla shapes. The tortillas are baked at low temperatures (250 degrees) before packaging. Each tortilla provides 60 calories of whole grain carbohydrate energy and only 1 gram of fat, plus a little calcium and iron. The flavor and texture is naturally corn-sweet, wholesome, chewy and far moister than some gluten-free tortillas I've tried that crumble when folded.

I forsee this product becoming a new staple in my kitchen and am pleased to be sharing it with you today. I looking forward to creating sprouted corn tostadas with avocadoes and cilantro, with black beans, with tofu-miso paté... but for today, let us begin with hummus, the humble and widely available Middle Eastern sesame-chick pea spread. I used Hot Mama's original flavor hummus in this recipe, but any brand or flavor, including your own homemade raw or cooked hummus, would surely be tasty and satisfying.

Practically Raw Sprouted Corn Tostadas
with Hummus, Salsa & Sprouts

2 sprouted corn tortillas
1/4 cup hummus, your pick of flavor
1 cup alfalfa or red clover sprouts
2 teaspoons salsa
2 black olives

Warm tortillas briefly in the toaster or on the surface of a hot, cast-iron skillet for about 30 seconds to gently soften. Transfer to plate and divide hummus evenly between the two tortillas, spreading out almost to the edges. Top each tostada with half the sprouts, half the salsa and one black olive. To eat, spread the salsa across the center line and fold the tostada in half, like a soft taco. Then, bite in. Yum!

Note: I purchased my sprouted corn tortillas at Green Fields Market in Greenfield, MA and did not receive any product or compensation from Food for Life Baking Company prior to posting this blog. However, Food for Life is welcome to send me free samples and coupons anytime, as I adore their products!


glutenfreeforgood said...

Your recipes always make my mouth water. We're on the same page with this treat of yours. I haven't tried these tortillas, but I definitely will because of your recommendation. If you like them, they must be good. And thanks for all the information on the gluten-free-ness of the product. I really appreciate that. Not to mention all the good info on sprouts and why they are so healthy. Your blog is always such a wonderful wealth of information. And the food photos are "delicious."

Diana Allen, MS, CNS said...

Thank you, Miss Melissa! You might have this same experience when you make something delicious to eat and realize you simply must blog about it: there you are, taking pictures and getting hungrier and hungrier with every mouthwatering shot! Anyway, I know you will LOVE these sprouted corn tortillas. Personally, I can hardly wait for lunch today to eat them again! :) Diana

Anonymous said...

While I personally like these tortillas, anyone needing gluten free tortillas should beware. On another website I found this:

"When she contacted Food for Life, she received the following response:

Thank you for your email. I am sorry that you obtain a stomach ache from the Organic Sprouted Corn Tortillas. That product does contain gluten. We offer a Wheat Free/Gluten Free Whole Grain Brown Rice Tortilla that “IS” free of gluten."

diana allen, ms, cns said...

Thank you for bringing this to my attention, Anonymous. You are right - I checked the Food for Life website and the sprouted corn tortillas are listed as wheat free, not gluten free. My guess is they must be made on the same equipment as the sprouted wheat tortillas, and could contain traces of gluten from cross contamination. For people with a mild gluten sensitivity (such as yours truly), this might not be a problem, but a true celiac would need to steer clear.

megan vaeth said...

Your recipe looks delicious!!!
I just bought the at whole foods on a recommendation from someone .
We are tying them out tonight. GF and DF tacos.

diana allen, ms, cns said...

Thanks, Megan! I hope your tacos are delish! <3

Health Care Studios said...

Sprouts are mainly the germinated seeds of the grains and we also call them ‘Ankurwali Dal’. These sprouts are considered as a super food as it does wonders to the body as it contains high nutrition value. Sprouts provide a lot of benefits to our body and purification of blood is the one main point. Eating sprouts not only benefit our internal body but also provides amazing benefits to the outer parts as well because sprouts are really very good for hairs and skin as well. Collectively Sprouts contains a number of health benefits but while talking about the Wheat Sprouts Benefits it might make you wonder how to make them and the benefits that wheat sprouts may provide. These are basically made from whole grains and have a nutty and slightly sweet flavor and you can eat these by adding them in a variety of dishes. They add a different taste to the dish and moreover increase the nutritional value of the dish. So, this is a wonder food that one can easily get in their homes and can easily include in their diet.