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Old 12-29-2009, 09:30 PM   #1
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Default Spent grain preservation and grain drying

I brewed up a 10 gallon batch of AG on Sunday. I intended to make dog biscuits out of the spent grains, and so I put the entire mash tun in my kegorator to help preserve it. I began an attempt to dry the grain.

I put my oven on its lowest setting (170 degrees F) and spread some of the grains out on a couple cookie sheets and set them in the oven, stirring the grains periodically. This took about a full day to really dry.

By the time I got around to putting the second batch in to dry, the grains in the mash tun are already going bad, so I had to toss them.

So I have some questions:

1) Is there a better way to dry the grains? Do I even need to dry them if I'm making the biscuits? How might this alter my recipe? What about grinding the grains?

2) Any suggestions on preserving the grain long enough to use it all? 10 gallons yields quite a bit of grain. I have lots of friends and family that have dogs, so I'm confident that I could use all the biscuits made from that much grain.

Thanks



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Old 12-29-2009, 09:37 PM   #2
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freeze them in ziplock bags.

Also, last time I made biscuits, I scooped out 8 cups of grain, and added 6 cups of flour. It made a LOT of biscuits. So you might not need to keep all your grain, (my extra went into my compost pile.) If you're brewing often enough, you'll end up with a freezer full of spent grains.

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Old 12-29-2009, 09:39 PM   #3
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I've never heard of drying the grains before using in bread or dog biscuits, as I've just used them as is.

But I can tell you how to preserve them! Freeze them. They go bad very quickly at room temperature, and last maybe 3 days in the fridge. They will last indefinitely in the freezer, though.

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Old 12-29-2009, 09:52 PM   #4
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Freezer isn't much of an option [for me], though I probably don't need to be making so many biscuits anyway.

If you're not drying them, you're probably not grinding them. I guess that's not much of an issue with such a thick, sticky mass produced by most dog biscuit recipes I see laying about.

Thanks!

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Old 12-29-2009, 09:58 PM   #5
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Freezer isn't much of an option [for me], though I probably don't need to be making so many biscuits anyway.

If you're not drying them, you're probably not grinding them. I guess that's not much of an issue with such a thick, sticky mass produced by most dog biscuit recipes I see laying about.

Thanks!
I'm not sure what you're saying! I used crush grain, but then don't grind them any finer. I mix the peanut butter, flour, and eggs and put them on a cookie sheet until the biscuits are dry. My dog loves them!

Why should I dry the grains? I'm not sure I understand.
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Old 12-29-2009, 10:01 PM   #6
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I had the notion in my mind that I should turn the spent barley into a flour, which would require drying them.

I'm overcomplicating

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Old 12-29-2009, 10:05 PM   #7
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I had the notion in my mind that I should turn the spent barley into a flour, which would require drying them.

I'm overcomplicating
Ahhh! Now I understand.

I'm sure you could do that, but it would be tough to dry out spent grain (as you've found). I just use "as is", and the bread has a nice grainy texture. I have my barley crusher at .036, and I like the texture of the spent grains.

Don't try this because I said so- because I don't know what would happen to the mill- but maybe you could recrush the grain in your mill at a finer setting. Or use a blender to pulverize the grains if you want.

I personally just use the grains right out of the MLT, and the dog doesn't complain.
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Old 12-29-2009, 10:21 PM   #8
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I've had such good results out of my barley crusher, I'm afraid to touch the gap setting.

I've tried using a blender; it's way too rigid to use while the grain is wet.

I've used the wet grains to make some bread before, and it yielded a very good flavor, but I'm worried that the dough can't hold much of the grain, plus it's hard to estimate the amount of water in the grain, which makes it hard to come up with an appropriate recipe. Again, I'm overcomplicating

I've now dried quite a bit, so I might try grinding that and using it as a flour just to experiment. Next time I brew, I'll use the grain as-is.

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Old 12-30-2009, 05:53 AM   #9
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I just usually take the spent grains down the road to friend that has a pig, a Vietnamese Pot-bellied pig. She really loves the spent grains and can pack away a 5.5 gallon batch of spent grains in a day. Too bad she's a pet though, bet she'd be real tasty.

My-2 cents.

Jeff

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Old 12-30-2009, 01:46 PM   #10
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mmm beer flavored bacon...

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