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Old 08-08-2010, 12:22 AM   #1
beninan
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Default Organic pumpkin pie mix for pumkin ale?

Tomorrow I'll be brewing a pumpkin ale for this fall. Now I've read several different recipes and said to use pure pumpkin, not pumpkin pie mix.
While shopping for pure pumpkin, I found organic canned pumpkin and organic canned pumpkin pie mix. The ingredients of the pure pumpkin was obviously just 100% pure organic pumpkin, but the pumpkin pie mix was 100% pure pumpkin, evaporated cane juice, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, cloves, and allspice.

Would there be a difference if I were to boil with the pure pumpkin and add the spices, or boil with pumpkin pie mix and not have to add the spices? Both seem like the exact same thing, except with the spices already added in the pumpkin pie mix.

The two types of canned pumpkin that I'm referring to are Farmer's Market Organic Pumpkin Pie Mix and Farmer's Market Organic Pumpkin.

I will be baking the pumpkin before I boil. Also, would it be possible to boil the pumpkin in a large brewing bag to prevent all the trub or will that hinder the flavor infusion? Or will it just leak out of the brewing bag anyway?

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Old 08-08-2010, 01:10 AM   #2
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The pumpkin pie mix also has cane juice, which is sugar. So you'll get that thrown in as well. Plus, you have no idea how much spice is in the pie filling.

I'd go with the plain pumpkin, but if that's really all that's in there you could make it work as long as there's not too much spice in it (not enough is doable): figure out how much sugar's in there (by comparing the dietary label with plain pumpkin), and design a recipe accounting for it. Don't add any spices at boil, and if it turns out under-spiced you can do a spice tea to add up to flavor.

A bit more of a pain, and it's more likely that you won't be able to repeat your recipe in future years (if that brand goes off the market or changes its spice or sugar ratio or something)

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Old 08-08-2010, 01:50 PM   #3
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I used the same organic pumpkin mix about two weeks ago and baked it in the oven for one hour at 350 deg, turning it ever 30 mins. I used two cans and it seemed to cook down a bit in the oven. I then put the pumpkin in my strike water and heated to the target temp. By the time I hit my target temp there was really no chunks of pumpkin in the water it had fully dissolved. I added it to the mash and had no problem sparging. So in short I don't think you will really need to use a bag with the organic pumpkin puree.

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Old 08-08-2010, 02:15 PM   #4
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The last pumpkin ale I brewed I used a bag which turned out to be useless. The pumpkin disolved and left the bag.

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Old 08-16-2010, 03:47 AM   #5
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So i decided to brew this batch using the pumpkin pie mix as an experimental batch. It smelled awesome while cooking and during the first week of fermentation and the cane juice didn't have much of an effect on my target gravity.
But.... i decided that ill leave it in the primary for 2 weeks, and now after week one the airlock doesn't smell like the first several days of fermentation. now it smells like a mix of rotting pumpkins and yogurt.
I haven't opened the lid to check for any signs of infections yet. This is my first pumpkin batch that I have brewed. Is this possibly a normal smell? Or is this maybe similar to the smell of an infected batch?

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Old 08-18-2010, 12:53 AM   #6
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I just opened the lid on the fermenter and inspected the batch. It looks awesome! and it smells better with the lid off than it does through the airlock. I'll guess I'll find out for sure within a month or so if it's good or not.

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Old 08-25-2010, 08:31 PM   #7
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beninan,

yes, please keep us updated on your brew using the pie mix. Just today I looked at both products and chose the organic pumpkin and not the mix but I was thinking hard about that decision.

Good luck and let us know how it goes!

jeff

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Old 08-27-2010, 01:58 AM   #8
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I transferred to secondary last week and tasted it. It tasted like a flat brown ale with a subtle pumpkin flavor. There wasn't a hint of spice at all. I think boiling the spices/primary fermenting with the spices may have caused them to drop out. I decided to add the spice tea the secondary as described in http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f76/thun...ersions-26699/ and now it smells great! I'll take a sample for a gravity reading in a few days I'll taste it then to see how it is.

I think if I happen to do this batch again, I'll go with the pure pumpkin. The pumpkin pie mix doesn't seem to have any benefit over pure pumpkin.

I wonder how it would turn out if the baked pumpkin pie mix was added directly to secondary, skipping the boil all together? Or would this maybe hinder the pumpkin taste?

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Old 08-27-2010, 04:01 AM   #9
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I'm not sure how that would work...everything i've read either says to boil it or put it in the mash. I'm going to do the AG version (AHS Pumpkin Ale) and am going to put the pure pumpkin in the mash so we'll see how it goes.

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Old 08-27-2010, 11:36 PM   #10
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sampled it today, and it tastes awesome! Great pumpkin taste combined with an awesome spice taste, I can't wait until it's bottled!
gravity is at 1.012 now, and I think (yeah) the OG was 1.052...
my laptop just died, so I lost all my recipes, including the specs on this one...

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