Monday, April 23, 2007

Wacky Ovaltine Beer Experiment

Ovaltine as beer ingredient?Malted Milk
Most of you will know what Ovaltine is. It's a malted milk drink powder that you mix with water or milk. In the UK Ovaltine is popular, in other parts of the world, Nestle's Milo is popular. After doing some research, reading packages, nutrition web sites, ingredients, etc., I've come up with an experiment to use Ovaltine as a base for beer. If you hadn't guessed it already, malt extract is a big part of these malted milk drink mixes. I will brew up a small batch and experiment with a recipe that I have formulated to make what is essentially 4 litres of some kind of strange chocolate ale.

Here's what I am thinking...

Boil up 500g of Ovaltine in 5 litres of water. I don't know if the yeast will have enough nutrients from Ovaltine alone, so I'll chuck in a teaspoon of dry bakers' yeast in the boil. Add a pinch of bittering hops, boil some more and add some finishing hops, cool, aerate and pitch an ale yeast on it. After a week, I'll rack it onto some gelatin and see how she clears. It will very likely taste like beer as Ovaltine's principal ingredients are sugar, malt extract and glucose.

Here are the ingredients from the label of the Philippines version of Ovaltine:
Ovaltine ingredients

The ingredients that are bad for beer have little Xs near them, the ingredients that are not bad for beer have little check marks. Sounds pretty neat eh? I'll be take lots of notes and preparing a detailed blog entry to keep everyone aware of what's happening in the laboratory. LOL

Sleep now, it's been a long day.


Steve said...

How did this turn out?

HomeBrewer said...

Hi Steve,

After about 1 month I bottled the Ovaltine Beer. In another 2 weeks I gave it a try. It wasn't too far from beer. It had the clarity, carbonation and head of beer. There were malt tones and the hops were there but there was some undefinable flavor to it. The taste wasn't bad, just unusual. I don't think it went off, but more of something from the milk solids perhaps.

I'll stick to real malt if I can help it in the future.