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Old 06-11-2009, 06:21 PM   #1
gregdech
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Default Witbier with raw wheat - Is a Cereal Mash Required?

I'm planning a witbier in the not so distant future and I was hoping to get some input re: whether or not to do a cereal mash. The cost of the flaked wheat in these parts is ridiculous ($6.40/kg, $2.90/lb) and as such I was going to go with raw soft white wheat ($4.40/kg, $2.00/lb). Also, I may be able to scrounge up some free wheat from farming friends so I would like to get the process down for using raw wheat.

I've scoured the literature (i.e. here and on the interweb) and seem to be getting conflicting information on whether or not I need to do a cereal mash with raw wheat. According to "Brewing Science and Practice, Briggs et al., (2004)", the gelatinization temperature of wheat is 52-66C (126-151F), and as such a protein rest at ~55C (131F) followed by a sacc rest at ~67-68C (153-154F) should take care of gelatinizing the starches for conversion. However, I have also seen mention of cereal mashes with raw wheat so I am a little hesitant to charge ahead. I thought I would throw this out for discussion to see what the braintrust here has to say. Bottom Line: Does raw wheat require a cereal mash or not? Discuss!

Cheers,

Greg

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Old 06-11-2009, 06:22 PM   #2
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Yes, do a cereal mash.

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Old 06-11-2009, 06:24 PM   #3
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No, it does not - because the gelatinization temp of wheat is in the range of normal saccharification temps. When making my Witbier, I do a brief 15 minute rest at 122, then infuse up to 153 for the balance of the hour.

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Old 06-11-2009, 06:26 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by flyangler18 View Post
No, it does not - because the gelatinization temp of wheat is in the range of normal saccharification temps. When making my Witbier, I do a brief 15 minute protein rest at 122, then infuse up to 153 for the balance of the hour.
I disagree, I have done it this way and always gotten horrible efficiency and not extracted the flavors I wanted.
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Old 06-11-2009, 06:40 PM   #5
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Well, traditionally raw wheat berries go straight into a single-infusion mash. I'm like Jason (flyangler) - I've always experienced excellent results without a "cereal mash". You don't have to boil the wheat. Hell, I don't even do a 122F rest. I merely mash in - with a lot of rice hulls.

Bob

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Old 06-11-2009, 06:49 PM   #6
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I'll have to experiment doing a single-infusion with my Wit next time, to see how the efficiencies compare.

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Old 06-11-2009, 06:51 PM   #7
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You bastards, why can't I get good extraction from infusion mashes? Oh well, I don't mind cereal mashing and I think it positively effects the flavor as well.

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Old 06-11-2009, 07:36 PM   #8
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I do 122*F and 154*F as soon as I can get the second infusion water heated. Eff. is around 80%, my usual is about 85-90%.

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Old 06-11-2009, 07:46 PM   #9
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I did the 122 rest as instructed in brewing classic styles but I ramped up with direct heat. What a pain.. I'm brewing it again and might try a thick 1qt/lb mash and infuse to the next step. Crap, nevermind... it calls for flaked wheat and not raw. That certainly helps.

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