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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Recipes/Ingredients > Special B question
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Old 08-05-2008, 05:03 AM   #1
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Default Special B question

Does Special B need to be mashed? My understanding is that it is just a dark Belgian crystal malt, therfore, it shouldn't need to be mashed but Beersmith indicates that it must be mashed. What gives?

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Old 08-05-2008, 05:12 AM   #2
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Not to seem like a smart@ss but how else do you plan to extract the sugars? I mean I have been only brewing for 7 months so it's certainly possible that I am unaware of another method other than steeping.

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Old 08-05-2008, 05:29 AM   #3
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I'm pretty sure you can steep Special B but I wouldn't expect to get fermentables so make that assumption in your recipe. How much were you planning on using?

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Old 08-05-2008, 12:01 PM   #4
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Special B is a crystal type malt. It does not need mashing and can be steeped...

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Old 08-05-2008, 12:22 PM   #5
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The purpose of Special B is to impart color, aroma, and flavor. It's not a grain that's meant to impart fermentables, but rather as an adjunct to "shape" the overall impact of the beer. Thus, it doesn't need to be mashed. In other words, you can steep it (as part of a recipe) prior to adding extract for a perfectly fine beer. Of course, in an all-grain context, it would be tossed into the MLT with the rest of the grist.

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Old 08-05-2008, 01:12 PM   #6
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Are you doing a PM or AG? If PM, then the posts above are correct in stating that you can steep it. If you're doing AG then toss it in your mill with everything else.

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Old 08-05-2008, 01:49 PM   #7
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You can steep it in Extract with grain recipes....Same with victory.

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Old 08-06-2008, 01:47 AM   #8
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I'm brewing the 08-08-08 Imperial Stout which uses about 4 lbs of specialty grains (the max I can mash with my little 2 gal cooler). Since I won't have any room for any base malt in there, I wanted to make sure I wouldn't be missing out on any fermentables if I just steeped (the recipe calls for 1lb of Special B).

Thanks for reaffirming what I thought I already knew.

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Old 08-06-2008, 03:51 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Revvy View Post
You can steep it in Extract with grain recipes....Same with victory.
Not quite the same. Special B is a crystal malt, so its starches are already converted to sugar. Therefore, it does not need to be mashed to extract the sugar - it can just be steeped to get the sugar out in addition to its nice flavor.

Victory malt's starch is not converted yet - it requires a mash to convert them. That said, you can steep it to get some nice toasty flavor from it, but you will not get a sugar contribution from Victory unless it is mashed. The downside from steeping large quantities of unconverted starches is significant haze in the finished beer.
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Old 08-06-2008, 04:01 AM   #10
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Quote:
Victory malt's starch is not converted yet - it requires a mash to convert them. That said, you can steep it to get some nice toasty flavor from it, but you will not get a sugar contribution from Victory unless it is mashed. The downside from steeping large quantities of unconverted starches is significant haze in the finished beer.
+1 on what bearcat said

you could steep victory but you will be adding undesirable starches to your beer.
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