Sunday, November 21, 2010

Brew Prime

Quick Post here: This last Monday (Nov 15th, 2010), I concocted my first Rural Brew, the Blog's Namesake!!!

It is a Pumpkin Porter Style, here's my recipe list I made up while getting grain and brewing:

The Recipe and Method
 Here's what it says:

8 Lbs Munich Malt
1 Lb Chocolate Malt
1 Lb Caramel Crystal Malt 60L
.5 Lb Crystal MAlt 10L

After Lautering (taking the sugars out of the grains with hot water, basically) Specific Gravity (how much sugar is in the water compared to the density of water) comes out to 1.020 @ 141 degrees Fahrenheit (the higher the Specific Gravity, the more potential for alcohol by volume (ABV). This liquid (or Wort, as it is called) extracted is basically is what I'll use to boil down into actual beer (with hops and stuff, including Pumpkin and spices, for this particular recipe). With a specific gravity of 1.020 @ 141 Degrees F, my extraction efficiency was about 70%. This is good considering my last beer I got something like 40% extraction efficiency. The extraction efficiency measures potential sugars taken from the grains after the mashing is completed.

Ugh, sorry for the technical stuff, I'm mostly writing this stuff to document it for me rather than you.

As a  general key, you boil the Wort for about 1 hour to boil it down to the final liquid you ferment. Therefore, I am indicating the ingredients of this recipe in order of when they go into the boil. When you add ingredients at different times in the boil, it brings out different characteristics in the ingredients, depending on how long they are boiled. This is especially true for Hops. THe longer they are in the boil, the more bitterness you'll get out of the hops. The less time they are in the boil (i.e. 5 minutes from the end, etc) the more of the aroma or flowery taste you'll get from them. Thus, as an indication of when the ingredients were added to the boil, I've added an "@ ___ Minutes" after each ingredient to indicate how far before the END of the boil ingredients were added.

Onto the rest of the recipe!

1 Stick Cinnamon @ 60 Minutes
1 Oz Dried Willamette Dried Leaf Hops @ 60 Minutes
6 Lbs Roasted Pumpkin guts n' stuff @ 45 Minutes
1/2 Oz Cascade Hops @ 30 Minutes
1 additional stick Cinnamon @ 5 Minutes
Just shy of 1 tsp Nutmeg @ 5 minutes
1/2 tsp Coriander @ 5 minutes
1 tsp dried powdered ginger @ 5 Minutes
1/4 tsp Clove @ 5 minutes

Irish Ale Yeast from Wyeast

During the Lautering Process
The 1 Lb Chocolate Malt I used gives it a really dark color, which is great, as seen above.

So I'll Rack it (transfer from the Primary fermenter to another 5 Gallon container) to sift out any little yeast waste and pumpkin goo and guts. let it sit for about another week, then its time for bottling, and ready for consumption in time for Christmas!

If you're interested, heres some other pictures from brewday, my sister helped a lot! A little brewer's assistant! And I have to say, the barn is a great place for brewing beer. I'm currently in the process of clearing out a space for me to have a more permanent setup. The funny thing is that I have no running water out in the barn, so I'm carting water out for brewing in buckets. This last brew I was able to do it with slightly less than 15 Gallons of water. 3 buckets full.

As an added bonus, I dried out about 3 sheet pans full of the spent brew grains and I am now trying to use them in bread I'm making. I used my Burr grinder I won as a prize from Zoka Coffee in Seattle to grind down a bit into some nice looking flour. It looks like its going to work very well for adding some subtle notes of flavor and dark color to my breads.

I'll report on how the beer and bread turn out.


-Jon E