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Old 02-24-2008, 04:01 AM   #1
Cambo
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Default African Beer

I'm doing a project for a history of beer class, and my research involves the proliferation of European Beer in Africa through the colonial era. As part of it, I'm planning on brewing two beers; a traditional African Sorghum beer, and a more modern colonial inspired ale from Africa, in order to compare the two. Does anybody have any useful information about either? Any recipes, or places to find the ingredients?

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Old 02-24-2008, 04:28 AM   #2
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This is all I got.
http://www.sprecherbrewery.com/beer.php?cat=5

Bottom 2 beers.

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Old 02-24-2008, 04:47 AM   #3
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Are you the guy who asked about the plantains a couple weeks ago? No luck finding any info on it? Darn, I was hoping you came up with something!

A couple of weeks back a guy had posted a thread about South African beers....he came back from there and was interested in re-creating some. He might have some info...though since his interest was SOuth Africa, his stuff is probably more influence by germanic lager and pilsners than with using traditional ingredients....

One thought...thread search for "gluten free" and organic recipes, here or on the web...I know a lot of people who are wheat intolerant have come up with sourgham based recipes....they may give you some basic recipes from which combining with any research you find about traditional african brewing, you may be able to "fudge" the numbers in a brewing program and be able to brew something close....

Also take a look at John Mosher's radical brewing book and website http://www.radicalbrewing.com/ he's got some "multi ethnic" beer recipes than use some indegenous ingredients from around the world...you may find the names of some traditional african brewing ingredients there...I know he sells a lot of ingredients not commonly found in traditional brewing enviroments.

Again, you may not find plainly articulated and transcribed traditional recipes, especially if they were brewed by cultures that handed info down orally (I can't see any Akie tribesmen posting on a website their recipes.) You may have to combine many different source material, some of which is pretty loose. or obtuse with modern brewing ingredients, and from contemporay styles that may have evolved from indegineous cultures, to come up with what you "think" might have been brewed by them.

Remember that they would have brewed with whatever they grew around them...If they didn't grow wheat oats or other grains, they probably didn't make what we think of as beer. They may have converted starches (into sugars) from roots instead.

ANd they probably relied on open fermentation instead of yeast cultures.....

I'd really be interested in what you come up with...Please keep me posted.

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Old 02-24-2008, 04:53 AM   #4
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No, that wasn't me. Although I do enjoy experimenting. I'm the guy who is asking about citrus wine in the wine section.

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Old 02-24-2008, 04:58 AM   #5
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He lives with the one who was asking about plantains.

That was Judd. I live with both of them. We have fun.

OT: Hey Cam, you should see the rate this Saison is fermenting. It's going crazy - practically no krausen, but it blew the stopper out of place just with CO2 pressure. Hope your flight was good.

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Old 02-24-2008, 05:14 AM   #6
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If all of you come up with recipes for this stuff I'd love to see it...

I was looking at that link that someone else posted...likes like your base ingredients are going to be sorghum and millet...

Here's an interesting article on gluten free beers that talks a little about the conversion process. http://www.sillyyak.com.au/gfb/gfbrew.html

Here's something interesting called "lost grains of africa" it mentions "finger millet" for beer.
lhttp://books.nap.edu/openbook.php?re...d=2305&page=39

This looks interesting http://timbuktuchronicles.blogspot.c...llet-beer.html

And this is a link to a video on brewing african beer with millet

http://www.createspace.com/206776

And here's one on breweing millet beer in Mali!

http://sociolingomali.wordpress.com/...l-millet-beer/

Google is a wonderful thing!

P.s. for this research you owe me a few bottles of your homework

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Old 02-24-2008, 05:25 AM   #7
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We will keep you updated. Although you may not want a few bottled of my project. Pure spruce and molasses.

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Old 02-24-2008, 05:56 PM   #8
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Thanks a lot, Revvy. That one article on Millet beer in Mali seems particularly useful. And I may want a copy of Radical Brewing for entirely non school related reasons.

Kai- What beers did you want me to buy for you?

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Old 02-24-2008, 06:34 PM   #9
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One of the West-African recipes that intrigued me was Mbele Banana Beer. Apparently the grain bill is typical of Africa- equal parts Sorghum and Millet, but it has bananas in it.

Anybody have any idea how I might go about adding Banana to beer? It can't exactly be juiced that easily. Should I just blend it up and dump it in with the wort? Before or after fermentation?

Also, in a slightly easier question, can anybody name any modern (nontraditional) African ales that I could clone for comparison purposes? Most of what I've found on that has been lagers, which I can't do because I don't have a fridge big enough to fit a carboy.

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Old 02-24-2008, 06:48 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cambo
One of the West-African recipes that intrigued me was Mbele Banana Beer. Apparently the grain bill is typical of Africa- equal parts Sorghum and Millet, but it has bananas in it.

Anybody have any idea how I might go about adding Banana to beer? It can't exactly be juiced that easily. Should I just blend it up and dump it in with the wort? Before or after fermentation?

Also, in a slightly easier question, can anybody name any modern (nontraditional) African ales that I could clone for comparison purposes? Most of what I've found on that has been lagers, which I can't do because I don't have a fridge big enough to fit a carboy.
Same way you'd make banana bread or use any fruit in beer. But remember you are trying to simulate traditional brewing techniques so perfect sanitization is not going to be as crucial...

Get the ripest nana's or plantains possible....Or stick them in a paper grocery bag for a few days till the skin is black and the inside is squishy. Sanitize your fermentor and carefully un peel the bananas and let the mush drop into the bottom of the bucket. Brew your beer and cool your wort, then pour onto bananas in the primary. and pitch yeast as normal...

USE A BLOWOFF TUBE!!!!

At racking to secondary taste your sample and if needed add more banana mush into the secondary...

Or you could not put them in primary but in secondary... It's sort of your choice....but I'd do it in primary figuring that's how they would have done it...all at once.
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