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Old 03-11-2007, 03:59 PM   #1
Whelk
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Default First Homemade Recipe Woes

So I picked up ingredients for my first homemade recipe and helped a friend to pick up his first starter kit. First, I got a papercut and bled all over my coupon--the cashier was less than pleased with me. Then I'm trying to crush my grains, realize I can't find the rolling pin, and try to make do with a tiny mortar and pestle. About 45 minutes and a third of a pound of grains later, I find the rolling pin. Everything progressed swimmingly until I was topping up the wort with water to get it to a full 5gal. I started pouring and asked my first-timer friend to tell me when I hit 5gal. Of course, I look at it after I've poured and he's called out to stop, and I have at least half a gallon too much water in my fermenter. Argh. Anyway, what do you all think the recipe will turn out like?

"As Yet Unnamed Vanilla Creme Ale"

1.045 OG, 13 IBU, Color 17o, ABV 4.5%, Est FG 1.011

Munton's Light DME--1lb
Munton's Extra Light DME--0.25lb
Munton's Dark LME--3.3lbs, late addition
Crystal 55L--1lb, steeped
Caramel Wheat 63L--0.5lb, steeped
Cascade 6.0%--0.5oz, 60 min.
Mt Hood 4.2%--0.5 oz, 2 min.

1 tsp. gypsum at 60 min. 2 tsp. Irish moss at 30 min, 4 oz vanilla at priming, 1 cup lactose at priming, 1.5 cups DME at priming.

As for yeast, I'm using some Wyeast Scottish Ale yeast that I washed and threw in a starter two days ago. I pitched my yeast at around 9pm, and as of 11am it's happily bubbling away in the blow-off tube. Yes, I was inspired by Cheesefood's famous recipe, but I really used a different recipe as my base (a 'Vanilla Creme Ale' found in BYO's 150 Clones). And, of course, it's about 5.5 gal. What do you think?

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Old 03-11-2007, 04:12 PM   #2
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Promash indicates that OG will be 1.037 if you get some fermentables from the Crystal and 1.033 if you just extract flavor. That is probably what you were thinking.Good luck getting it to ferment down 1.01 because most of mine don't go quite that low. It will be light on the alcohol but should taste fine.

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Old 03-11-2007, 05:35 PM   #3
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I haven't checked the gravity yet (lazy, I know), but Qbrew usually does estimate the FG pretty low. I forgot to factor in the extra half-gallon of water, but Qbrew said that should drop the OG to 1.041, IBUs to 12, and ABV to 4.1%, so we'll see. As long as I didn't make mud, I'll be happy.

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Old 03-11-2007, 05:49 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blender
Promash indicates that OG will be 1.037 if you get some fermentables from the Crystal and 1.033 if you just extract flavor. That is probably what you were thinking.Good luck getting it to ferment down 1.01 because most of mine don't go quite that low. It will be light on the alcohol but should taste fine.

If you have extra corn sugar you could do a 50/50 water-sugar boil and add that to an empty 2ndary then rack over your brew. You can go 25-30% of your total fermentables w/o adding a cidery flavor. I was thinking this would be the boost amounts.

1lb ~2.5%
.75lb ~ 1.87%
.5lb ~ 1.25%
The 1/2lb sounds like it might be the preferred choice if it was mine to make.

Good Luck.

Doing nothing, it would still be pretty drinkable - just darker lawnmower brew.

Forgot to say this: I use my blender to crack grains - pulsing it on and off quickly. Has to be done in small amounts 1/2 cup or less.
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Old 03-11-2007, 06:01 PM   #5
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Is the blender consistent? I was thinking of trying it, but decided the rolling pin was a safer option. Thanks for the advice about the priming sugar--now, should I just use priming sugar, or can I use DME? Would that give me a little more body along with the alcohol?

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Old 03-11-2007, 09:16 PM   #6
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Welk,

The blender method is consistent with my LHBS. I did a side by side comparison when I did my Dortmunder. 3.25lbs of grain was ground at the shop. I left .25 out whole for roasting. Then ground it myself. They were spot on the same. I did this because I questioned it too.

If you do it this way be sure to grind the grains before you sanitize or grind grain in a different spot from the brewing area. Grain dust can infect a batch easily.

I would use the corn sugar for the boost effect. It won't upset the hop-malt bitterness balance that you worked so hard to achieve in the boil. The DME will give you lower abv than the sugar, lb for lb. The sugar is more fermentable.

You can do either, my preference would be the sugar in light of the situation.

I think this is the one of rare occasions to recommend sugar over DME.

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Old 03-11-2007, 09:45 PM   #7
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Cool, thanks very much--I'll go do it now. Thanks again.

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