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Old 03-31-2011, 02:38 AM   #1
MrAverage
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Default Brewer's caramel color source?

Anyone know where I can purchase some brewer's caramel color in the US? Every source I can find is in the UK and I don't want to pay for overseas shipping if I can avoid it.

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Old 03-31-2011, 02:44 AM   #2
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Most of the sources I've ever seen where European. I would make up my own caramel, either straight sugar water boiled til you got the color you wanted, boiled kayro syrup (since it appears brewer's caramel may be that) or a combination of both.

To me it's ridiculous to pay extra for something that is nothing more than any home cook/ candy maker makes all the time.


3 T sugar
1T water
Pinch cream of tartar
1/4 cup boiling water

"In a heavy saucepan over low heat, melt the sugar in the tablespoon of water. Increase the heat to medium-high, cover the pan, bring to a boil, and boil for 2 minutes. Add the cream of tartar and continue to boil, uncovered, until the sugar is almost black in color. Remove the pan from the heat. The sugar will continue cook and darken. Allow it to begin to cool. Using extreme care, add the boiling water (the sugar will boil up and may splatter). Stir to disolve, then let cool to room temperature.

You can also do it with honey. We did Brochet, a 5th century burnt honey mead this summer, just basically boiled honey and water for several hours until it was mahogany in color.

From this







All the way to this....the taste was amazing

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Old 02-28-2012, 07:03 PM   #3
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I couldn't find brewers caramel either. I will try making this tonight. I have a dark american lager that I want to enter in NHC but it needs a little color boost. thanks for posting this.

BTW, what does the cream of tartar do? I know my wife has this in the spice cabinet because I have to move it all the time to get to the spices I use for BBQ rub. Never knew what it was for. Its been in there a long time so I guess she doesn't use it much either.

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Old 02-28-2012, 07:22 PM   #4
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Cream of tartar is an acid and it makes the chemical reaction that inverts the sugar. You can also use ascorbic acid (vitamin C) but I understand that C of T works better.

BTW - you can make a subsitute for baking powder using a mix of 2 parts cream of tartar with 1 part baking soda.

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Old 02-28-2012, 07:36 PM   #5
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D.D. Williamson

You can ask them for samples or you can order large amounts.

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