Sunday, April 8, 2007

One Step Closer to 100% Homemade Beer

All Crushed and Ready to MashBrew Day at Last!
I thought I would keep you guys posted on my malting at home experiment.

Today, I did a 10 litre mini-batch with the generic malt I made. All manually crushed with a rolling pin (lots of work) like I mentioned before. For 3 kilos it took me over an hour!

I mashed with a 3.4:1 water to grain with 3kg of malt. I did a long 60 minute protein rest at 45ºC to 50ºC because I don't know the protein content of the malt. If it is heavy in protein I hope this will help. If it's lighter on protein the beer will likely be headless. Going for sweet and fermentable, I went by taste on the beta amylase rest. It rested long and low as I held in for 90 minutes at 60ºC. I want to see how sweet this stuff can get.

I suspect that the malt could have been modified more or I did something to disable some of the enzymes during kilning. More things to try next time.

I found gobs of greyish suspended gloop that looks like cauliflower blobs (proteins?) would glom together when the my makeshift tun was undisturbed. I sparged and more sweet stuff came trickling out. The sparge took about 20 minutes for 5 litres. Maybe something was sticking a bit. Maybe over crush.

I boiled the sweet smelling wort for an 75 minutes. 15 minutes for scunge skimming and 60 minutes with hops in. I got a good hot break. I hopped it with 1/2 oz of Magnum pellets and 1/2 oz of Cascades at 45 minutes. When I chilled in the ice bath I could see more globs forming. Aerated and pitched with 1 package of re-hydrated Cooper's ale yeast. Total yield was just over 10 litres.

I have no idea what kind of beer this is going to be. I hoped to make something quite bitter and dry. Hopefully the yeast has the punch to take the FG down low. Staying away from the alpha amylase rest was the idea there. The color is very light and I suspect it will be quite a pale ale, probably more like a lager in looks.

All good fun. Considering that the unknown in my recipe is the malt, and making malt can be just as much an art as making beer. I'll let you know how it turns out. I expect to hear the airlock to be calling me soon.

This is truly 'seat of the pants' homebrewing in the Philippines.


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