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Old 11-05-2007, 05:13 PM   #1
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Default Malting my own wheat ideas

So, I've got my hands on about 10 gal. of raw wheat from my uncle the farmer. (yes, 10 gal. my dad picked it up for me and I believe it's simply 2 - 5 gal. buckets full of his wheat.) I'm going to try to malt a bunch of it and make a "family name" wheat beer from it. I've been researching info on malting on the internet and am confident in my understanding of it. My question now is, can I dry it after germination using a food dehydrator? Most of the info I've found on drying the malt calls for placing it in the oven at a very low temperature for a number of hours. I think my old oven in my apartment is not going to be accurate enough to do this, and I'm too busy with work and school to monitor it all the time. I have considered setting the oven at it's lowest setting and using a computer fan rigged to the slightly open oven door, rigged to a thermostat to pull out hot air when it gets too hot in there. This seems like a lot of work though when my parents have a food dehydrator that they don't use. I'm thinking I can just spread out the grains on some screen on the dehydrator shelves and dry the grain that way. Does anybody else have any thoughts on this plan?

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Old 11-05-2007, 05:56 PM   #2
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A food dehydrator would work fine, just don't overload it.

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Old 11-05-2007, 08:45 PM   #3
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I wonder if you could put it in a bag or a pillow case and throw it in a cloths dryer since it's kind of like a big dehydrator. Some dryers have an attachment that allows shoes and such to be placed in them and not bang around but stay stationary.

Might work, might not too.

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Old 11-05-2007, 09:39 PM   #4
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It's an interesting idea. My clothes dryer has the attachment for shoes actually. I might try that with a bit of it. I'm afraid of the fabric softner aroma and what not getting into it though. I might try it though and see how it does too.

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Old 11-05-2007, 10:51 PM   #5
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I did a pound of barley once, I used a dry skillet over very low heat to stop the germination and provide the roast. It was a major PITA, but I would think about doing it again with a better toasting method. I have read about the grain - pillowcase- clothes dryer thing somewhere, food dehydrator worth a try.

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Old 11-06-2007, 05:27 PM   #6
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Drying grain in a dehydrator will remove the moisture but will not develop the flavors you get in the kilning (oven drying) process. The malted wheat dried in a dehydrator will most likely have a green, grassy, grainy character and not a toasted wheat character. I am not saying you should not experiment, just alerting you to what you might expect.

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Old 11-06-2007, 07:18 PM   #7
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Yeah. I expected something like that. I was thinking that if I can dry it relatively unsupervised, then I could toast it fairly easily and possibly quicker at a higher heat after drying it.

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Old 11-07-2007, 12:31 AM   #8
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Alton Brown uses AC filters and box fans to make jerky.
http://www.dehydratortrayliners.com/
If that's not clear do a search for "dehydrator alton brown" to see his method.
Not sure if it would work for grains - but you'd be able to dry more volume than in a food dehydrator( I think ).
Also, there are recipes that call for unmalted wheat - like lambics and wit's

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