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Old 11-26-2009, 04:23 PM   #1
alesucker
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Default looking for a good oat beer recipe (not oatmeal!)

Hi all!

Hoping for some practical advice from some of the many experts on the site.

Looking to start first batch of AG beer. Was thinking of trying an oatmeal stout type beer. However, all the recipes I've found so far use oatmeal as opposed to whole oats and I specifically was hoping to use up some of the 80 lbs or so of whole oats (NOT rolled) that I have on hand, about half of which I actually grew myself!

I was hoping for a recipe that called for closer to equal parts barley and whole oats. Most of the oatmeal stout recipes I have found call for only a pound or so of rolled oats.

The guy at my LHBS seemed pretty knowledgeable and seemed to understand what I was shooting for. Here is what I have so far:

50 lb bag 6 row malted barley (for enzyme content)
80 lbs whole oats (already had on hand)
hand crank grain mill
several pounds chocolate malt
several pounds medium crystal malt
pH paper
cooler to use as a mash tun
circulating pump for lautering
8 gallon stainless brew pot
copper cooling coil
hydrometer, thermometers, bottling gear, fermenters, etc.
ale yeast
5.2 pH buffering powder
fuggles and goldings hops
dextrose to adjust starting gravity if my early batches have efficiencies that are off

I'm not a total newbie, just never did an all grain batch and looking for a good recipe that will utilize more of my oats.

I understand it MAY be necessary to pre-cook the whole oats for gelatinization? Any tips on how do this if necessary?

My first runs, I want to do a simple one step mash at about 150 degrees and basically get a workable system. I can always add equipment or complexity later.

Anybody have any tips or a good recipe that is about half 6-row barley and half whole oats?

Thanks! Looking forward to a fun winter of experimenting with AG brewing!

alesucker

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Old 11-26-2009, 05:00 PM   #3
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Oats are fresh from the field..... They are still in their husks with nothing added or changed. I'm basically looking at them as a starch source to be converted to fermentables by the 6-row barley enzymes. I guess the question is if the barley has enough enzyme present to convert itself as well as x pounds of oat starch. Trouble is, I don't know what "x" is.

I also should have mentioned I did a nomograph on our water report and normal tap water should be good for a medium dark beer without any additions. Although, I am thinking of going with RO water since we have it and we live in farm country so there is danger of pesticide and herbicide field runoff in our local city water supply which comes from the local river. There are some things that just don't boil away!

I'm hoping I can adjust the mash pH with enough dark malts to not have to use the buffering agent. Probably not likely with RO water from what I've read?

Thanks for the question!

alesucker

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Old 11-26-2009, 07:27 PM   #4
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According to the Wiki, even malted oats shouldn't be used at more than 10% of the grain bill. Designing Great Beers claims it makes up 3-11% of the grain bill when used in most oatmeal stouts. Of course, there's nothing to stop you from trying to use more. (You really should try a smaller batch, though.)

When using whole oats, you'll need to crush them and boil them to gelatinise the starch before adding them to the mash.

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Old 11-26-2009, 08:38 PM   #5
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With 6-row, X is around 1.5, I've seen a few recipes where the oats are 2/3rds of the bill. As Ølbart mentions, raw oats need to be cooked, you'll also want to employ a beta-glucanase rest and a protein rest during the mash.

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Old 11-26-2009, 10:30 PM   #6
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david42, do you mean x is 50% of the weight of the barley? so if i used 10 pounds of 6 row, i could use up to 5 lbs oats? (just keeping the math easy)

or do you mean, 1.5 pounds oats max for the recipe for 5 gallons?

on the mash rests, i was hoping to keep it simple and do a single temperature infusion on the first few batches to see if i need to tweek it. you know, if i get haziness, add the protein rest. if i want more fermentables, adjust the saccharification rest, etc.

betaglucanase rest 15 mins at 104 strike temp? may not be necessary if oats are cooked before addition and barley is already malted?

protein rest 20 mins at 125?


then finish up the mash at 154 for 40 mins or so?

should i just cook the whole oats (after grinding them) for about 5 minutes at a rolling boil like oatmeal, then add to the mash when striking at 100 degrees?

thanks for helping a brotha out with good advice!

alesucker

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Old 11-26-2009, 11:03 PM   #7
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should have also mentioned i have roasted barley and black patent malt. was just checking on my three week old apfelwein and saw those two bags in addition to the other stuff i mentioned.

want to minimize the use of adjuncts, though, and maximize creative use of the oats as the base.

speaking of which, from reading around, it seems possible to roast one's own barley in a regular oven? maybe a similar process can be used for oats still whole and in husk? perhaps a nice soak and wet-roast might mimic a crystal malt kind of effect and also have the effect of degelling, similar to cooking in water? so, could skip the beta gluc rest?

some of my oats that we grew we actually heated in the oven briefly to kill pests/eggs before storage. nothing near roasting, though...

happy thanksgiving, all! hope you decide to spend your fat, lazy thanksgiving evening enjoying some brews and takin' it easy....

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Old 11-27-2009, 02:19 AM   #8
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No, I meant adjuncts can be 1.5 times as much as the 6-row without any problems.

As long as you are willing to sacrifice some efficiency in the first batch, you can cook the oats and do a single infusion mash.

Roasting past 200L is extremely tricky. It is easy to go too far and end up with pure charcoal or even a fire.

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Old 11-27-2009, 03:33 PM   #9
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seems like cooking the oats w/ husks could release tannins. i suppose if cooking before grinding, they will need to be rinsed and dried. if baking/roasting maybe not a problem?

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Old 11-27-2009, 04:00 PM   #10
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Worth mentioning... oats are oily, so too much will cause the beer to have no head retention.

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