Dear Aunt Bean:
Can you be more specific with the process for making the fava bean tincture? I have ordered seeds to grow the beans to make a tincture. Getting info from you would be easier than re-inventing the wheel.
1-What will the bean look like when it is mature?
ANSWER: At maturity…you will see the large beans firm and bulging inside the pod.
2-What then? Pick and let dry? Do they have to dry? Can dry beans be kept in freezer until ready to sprout at a later time, like in winter?
ANSWER: To use the l-dopa…we usually pick the pods a few inches long when pretty and green and unspotted. The mature beans are usually getting aphid spots that have to be cut out OR the whole been may need tossed. The mature bean pods and the young ones have the same amount of l-dopa (so we pick young!!)
We open the pods / remove the beans / steam pods and beans separately and enjoy the beans for meals (not much l-dopa , but a good gentle support for the next day). The pods we juice and usually make bean blobs (Dried chips) from them . The juice can also be frozen in ice cube trays and used as a drink when needed.
Mature dry beans can be kept in the freezer but it is not necessary unless you are afraid of bugs getting to them or varying house temperatures or dampness that would cause them to sprout.
3-How do you sprout them? in water? wrapped in a damp paper towel? Rinse? I have seen your info after that; steam, mash, soak in brandy.
ANSWER: Soak for 24 hrs in a bowl in filtered water / then rinse 3 times a day for 3 days. Peel off the thin skin membrane then steam 6 to 8 minutes and freeze and eat as needed or make sprout balls / or can tincture them to make liquid l-dopa mash the sprouts/ place in a glass jar / cover with brandy and close tightly with lid/ shake for 1 month / strain/ let stand a day for the sediment to settle/ then siphon off (leaving sediment in the bottom) and label the bottle.
Start out with just a couple of drops until you find the proper dose for you. MAKE SURE YOU HAVE A G6pd blood test before doing anything with favas and consult your doctor before embarking on this adventure. If you are already on meds you can get into serious trouble experimenting.
4-About how many beans make how much tincture?
Answer….I usually use fava plant tops. I will have to do a new batch of sprout tincture to count beans for certain size jar, but I’ll do that and report
5-Will the tincture “go bad” – thinking about how much can be made ahead.
ANSWER: We have kept tincture a year past that I don’t know
6-In my research I found a Fava called “Ianto’s Return” (sometimes Ianto’s, or sometimes Lanto’s) “Originally introduced by Alan Kapuler of Peace Seeds. A large-seeded Guatemalan variety that reaches 6 feet tall. The bright yellow seeds are reputed to contain elevated levels of dopamine.” Is this the variety that you grow?
ANSWER: I am using a generic variety (Who knows) that the health food store had shipped in for me Organic Sproutable Fava Beans” Most favas are pretty much the same. I’ve tried 10 varieties so far *My favorite was Prescose Violetto (Italian) but Windsors are most common
Perhaps you can write up some instructions to email when requested – I think you have come upon something wonderful for those of us with PD Thank you for your discovery and for sharing! I’m looking forward to trying this and getting off of or reducing pharmaceutical dopamine.