ADZUKI BEAN (Phaseolus angularis), also known as Chi Dou and Chinese Red Bean, is an ancient (dating before 1000 BC) Asian specialty bean that is highly nutritious and very digestible. Versatile in culinary use, it is most popular in Western cuisine as a sprout; in China the dried bean is ground into a paste for use in a variety of dishes; in Japan it is popular in deserts and festival rice (it will tint the rice pink). The small round maroon bean has a white ridge. The flavor is rich, nutty and sweet. It has a relatively fast cooking time compared to other beans and doesn't require extensive soaking prior. Bush habit, 100 days. 100 seeds.
HEALTH BENEFITS: High in fiber, beans of any kind should be a daily part of your diet as they are colon protectors and help to reduce LDL cholesterol. Packed with nutrients, beans are rich in folates, Vitamins B and A, and minerals such as iron, copper, manganese, calcium, and magnesium. Be sure to add some type of bean to your diet every day for optimum health!
ABOUT SPROUTING: Sooooo easy and so much safer and healthier than buying store bought, which have been linked to e coli an salmonella outbreaks. Don't have a sprouter? Don't really need one. A strainer of any kind set into a bowl will do. Remember that you'll need twice the space as the amount of seed you start with as volume will double. Rinse your beans twice a day and then put in clean, preferably filtered cold water that covers well. When sprouts have reached desired size (they are soft and edible after just 24 hours of soaking), rinse one final time and refrigerate. They'll keep for a week, but better to sprout very small batches more frequently.
GROWING TIP: Adzuki beans do not transplant well but have a long growing season, so if you start indoors, best done in a peat or cow pot that can go directly into the ground without disturbing the roots. Twenty to twenty-five plants will provide enough for a family of four for a season. If you want to dry for the year, plant more. Like other snap beans, Adzuki likes an organically rich, slightly acidic soil with a pH between 6.0 and 6.8. Plant 1" deep and when situating in rows, 4" apart. Harvest when pods are tender or when bean is dried. All beans and peas are legumes and benefit from "inoculating" with rhizobacteria. These bacteria do the work of taking gaseous nitrogen from the air and "fixing" or concentrating it in pink root nodules which then slough off, adding nitrogen to the soil in a form other plants can take up as a nutrient. Inoculating your beans and peas will increase germination, and the health of your plants, helping them growing large roots and thus healthier plants. Growing pole beans with corn provides an extra shot of nitrogen to the corn, a wonderful natural symbiotic relationship that the Native Americans understood very well. You will see a big difference in overall results. Healthy legumes should also be turned under the soil when production ends as they are excellent green manure for your next crops.