It's quite beautiful to think that all these plants are super protected and waiting for just the right conditions to burst out of their shells and reach for the light, thus unlocking all of their nutrients and releasing a huge amount of energy. By creating these ideal conditions for them, we can allow them to do this easily...and then eat all of the good stuff and get all the energy for ourselves. With much gratefulness, of course :)
The easiest initial step is to SOAK your grains, nuts, beans, lentils, and seeds. Usually you would do this overnight, in a bowl of water. The next morning they're ready to be eaten or cooked, and they will taste absolutely delicious! I soak beans or lentils almost every night, in smallish amounts so that I'm always eating fresh ones. They will cook faster after having been soaked, and they taste so different from their canned versions - much more delicious and flavourful! My favourites are black beans, pinto beans, chickpeas, red lentils, kidney beans, so on and so forth :)
Nuts are also great to soak overnight. The next day, I towel dry them (you can also dry big batches in the oven, on very low heat) and eat them the same day - they make an ideal, satisfying, highly portable snack. The taste is so pure and rich and wholesome and sweet - all the bitterness and grittiness has been washed away so you're left with something super soft, flavourful, light, and much easier to digest. My favourites are almonds and walnuts.
I like to soak my grains in the morning, and then cook them that same evening. They are smaller and don't need quite as long of a soaking time, and this way you can decide what kind of grain will work best in your dinner dish more towards the last moment rather than having to plan way ahead of time. My favourite ones are brown rice (especially basmati), millet, and quinoa. Quinoa is actually a pseudo-seed that contains all your essential amino acids and is very high in protein. It's a fantastic choice for vegetarians.
I was also going to talk about the next step - SPROUTING - but I think that will have to wait another post. Even soaking your nuts, legumes, and grains, which takes next to no effort, will make an enormous difference in how many nutrients you'll be able to absorb, how many nutrients won't be leached out from the body, increased digestibility, reduced cooking time, and increased deliciousness!