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Old 09-29-2011, 08:39 PM   #1
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Default Adding oranges

Let's say I were winging it with a honey ale and I wanted to add some orange flavor to it. What is the best way to go about this? Should I add whole oranges? With or without the orange peels? Or is it best to go with an orange extract or orange concentrate or something? I would assume fresher is better. Help me out here guys. Much appreciated.

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Old 09-29-2011, 08:43 PM   #2
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I don't have too much experience with them, I've done one Belgian wit with orange peel. I got fresh oranges and used a carrot peeler to get about an ounce of fresh orange peel...avoiding the pith. I added to the boil with 5 minutes left. I just sampled this beer and it came out pretty good, but I might bump up the amount of orange peel next time.

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Old 09-29-2011, 08:44 PM   #3
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Orange peel is the way too go. If you use fresh oranges, you'll need more than the dried peels you can buy at homebrew shops. Remember, the outside orange colored peel is the sweet tasting stuff, the white underneath the peel is bitter. You'll want more bitter than sweet in my opinion. These can be added directly to the boil with about 5 minutes left.

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Old 09-29-2011, 08:48 PM   #4
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What about if I want to do it during secondary fermentation? Is that a viable option? And if so, how should I do that. Should I boil the orange peels before being added?

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Old 09-29-2011, 08:55 PM   #5
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You can squeeze out juice and use the zest and boil it to sanitize making a "tea" you can add to the secondary.

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Old 09-29-2011, 09:04 PM   #6
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Ahhh. Good idea. Thanks a lot.

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Old 09-29-2011, 09:07 PM   #7
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I do it all the time since I have a lot of Orange trees on my property. It works really good in wheat beers. Here is what I do:

About 4-5 medium oranges for a 5 gallon batch.
Juice the oranges into a bowl
Scape the innards out into the bowl
Use a potato peeler and get as much of the skin(zest) as possible, not the whit part but the orange colered part.

Boil about 1 quart of water. Let it cool to about 180 dg. Add everything from the bowl to the pan of water and let it sit covered for a few minutes. Now get a sterilzed hop bag add all the solids from the pan into the bag. Now pour the liquid from the pan into the fermenter, and then drop the sealed hop bag in also. Ferment as normal

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Old 09-30-2011, 04:21 AM   #8
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Interesting. Is it okay then that the orange ingredients aren't sterilized? Is it more important that the water is?

I'm very interested to know what the difference is in outcome between the varying ways of adding ingredients to the secondary. Regardless of the type of fruit (orange, lemon, lime, etc.), what is the outcome when just a peel is added versus peel and juice, or just juice, or the whole orange?

Let me know what you guys think.

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Old 09-30-2011, 05:54 PM   #9
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just zest a couple oranges into 1/4 cup vodka, let that soak for a few days/week, then add that liquid to your bottling bucket/keg. I do this with every wit I make. works great. maybe use 3 or more oranges to make sure you have enough, and just add it to taste until you know how much you like. I did this at first, but now I know I like two average sized oranges per 5 gallons.

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