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Old 03-23-2012, 02:13 AM   #1
igliashon
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Default My Next Two Recipes (plz critique)

I'm fixin' to brew tomorrow, at least one of these, so if any of y'all see what looks like a grievous mistake waiting to happen, please please please stop me before I screw up!

Both 3-gallon batches.

Recipe #1: my second porter attempt, "Dandy Root Porter":

2 lbs Briess Sorghum Extract
1 lb. D-180 Candi Syrup
1 lb. D-45 Candi Syrup
0.5 lbs molasses
1 lb wet-toasted GF instant oats
4 oz. maltodextrin

Hop schedule:
0.75 oz Willamette at 60 min
0.75 oz Willamette at 20 min

Herbs:
2 oz roasted dandelion root at 60 min
2 oz burdock root at 60 min
2 oz licorice root at 60 min
2 oz sarsaparilla root at 60 min

Windsor Ale Yeast

Estimated OG: 1.061
Estimated FG: 1.018 (~5.7% ABV)
Estimated IBU's: 37.9

My hypothesis behind this recipe is that the roasted dandelion will combine with the super-dark D-180 candi syrup to achieve the roastiness I'm looking for, while the burdock will add some complexity and the licorice and sarsaparilla will add some sweetness and subtle spiciness that might balance out the metallic sorghum tang. I'm counting on the oats and maltodextrin to add some body. What I'm a little worried about is the interplay between the hops and the herbs...it's a shot in the dark, really.

Recipe #2: Wild Rice Cream Ale

1 lb. Briess Sorghum Extract
1 lb. Rice Syrup Solids
0.5 lbs. Orange Blossom Honey
1 lb. flaked corn
1 lb. wild rice
6 oz. maltodextrin

Hop schedule:
0.5 oz Cascade at 60 min
0.5 oz Cascade at 15 min
0.75 oz Cascade at 5 min

Safale US-05 Dry Yeast

Estimated OG: 1.053
Estimated FG: 1.014 (~5.3% ABV)
Estimated IBU's: 30.3

I'm toying with the idea of mashing the corn and wild rice with some sweet potato to see if I can get some conversion, but I'm not sure if it's worth the extra effort or not. I really want to make something smooth and drinkable to counterbalance all of my experimental brews, something that won't take forever to mature. I'm also wondering if I should swap out the Cascade hops in the flavor/aroma stages for some Saaz...still don't really have a good feel for the different hop varieties, but from what I've read both Cascade and Saaz go good in cream ale styles.

So, any last thoughts before I fire up the kettle?

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Old 03-23-2012, 03:10 AM   #2
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For the second recipe, 6 oz of malto seems like a bit much. I'd maybe use 4 oz like the recipe #1

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Old 03-23-2012, 03:28 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by mloster View Post
For the second recipe, 6 oz of malto seems like a bit much. I'd maybe use 4 oz like the recipe #1
What kind of effect do you think too much maltodextrin will have on a brew? I'm still not too familiar with maltodextrin and the effect that large quantities will have, but FWIW there's a bloke in Australia that uses maltodextrin by the pound in his GF brews, and he seems right pleased with the results. Link is here: http://grantsglutenfreehomebrew.webs.com/

His brown ale recipe, for example, calls for 2 kg of maltodextrin, which is about 70 oz, which is about 4.4 lbs!! Reading that got me wondering if maybe jacking up the maltodextrin a bit might have a favorable effect on the beer. But I haven't done any experimenting with it yet, so I have only the wisdom of others to guide me. In any case I'm really curious about maltodextrin, since it's not used in any commercial GF brews and everything I've read suggests it helps add body and mouthfeel (which is usually totally lacking in commercial GF brews).
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Old 03-24-2012, 02:17 PM   #4
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Have you used dandelion roots before? When I saw your recipe I recalled something I had found while trying to imitate NB's Dandelion Ale: this guy didn't care for the flavor of Dandelion roots. But in searching for that link I saw plenty of others that were using it in both tea and beer, so who knows...
But speaking of flavorful roasted roots, have you considered roasted chicory root? that one's pretty easy to come by... I wouldn't worry to much about the hop interplay, not with Willamette @ 20min. You could lessen the amount and increase the time, just to make sure, if you were worried about it though.
I think those recipes look good, looking forward to the follow up.

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Old 03-24-2012, 07:39 PM   #5
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So, I brewed up recipe #1 yesterday, and I must say I'm very excited about how it looks. I backed off on the bittering hops just a bit, from .75 oz to 0.5 at 60 minutes, bringing the IBU's down to about 30. We'll see if that was a good decision. The unfermented wort smells very much like gingerbread, despite the absence of ginger or cinnamon--must be the sarsaparilla! The color is perfect, very dark and a nice tan-brown krausen that suggests it'll have a nice dark head when poured. OG was a tad low, 1.054, but I'm fine with that. I think BeerCalculus calculates the contribution of adjuncts based on the idea that they'll be mashed with barley and thus convert, and thus estimates OG a bit on the high side for gluten-free brews.

Contrary to my fears, the hops seem to be playing well with the herbs. My taste of the hydrometer sample was very nice, with the hops adding just a nice bit of bitterness to counterbalance the spicy sweetness. I *almost* threw in a pinch of columbus at 5 minutes, thinking some grapefruity aroma might be a good addition, but I chickened out. I hope this one ferments quick! The Windsor was bubbling up just a few hours after pitching, and is going gangbusters as of this morning.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MariposaSouth View Post
Have you used dandelion roots before? When I saw your recipe I recalled something I had found while trying to imitate NB's Dandelion Ale: this guy didn't care for the flavor of Dandelion roots. But in searching for that link I saw plenty of others that were using it in both tea and beer, so who knows...
I've made roasted dandelion root tea many times, and I find the flavor very pleasant, sort of like herbal coffee. That's part of what inspired it; that, and Fentiman's makes a dandelion-burdock soda that I quite enjoy. I think it'll be just fine.
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Old 03-24-2012, 10:54 PM   #6
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Where do you find your herbs?

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Old 03-24-2012, 11:04 PM   #7
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I'm fortunate enough to live in the San Francisco Bay area, where there are numerous herb shops. Most of what I need I can find locally, but occasionally I'll have to order online for the more esoteric historical brewing-related herbs, like sweet gale or henbane. Some herbs I gather myself, like fir tips, rosemary, jasmine flowers, etc. Any time I go for a hike these days, I feel like I'm on the lookout for potential beer ingredients, LOL.

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Old 04-01-2012, 04:53 PM   #8
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I took a hydrometer reading on the Dandy Root Porter yesterday, and am already in range of my target FG (~1.016). And the sample is absolutely delicious, I have NEVER had a beer taste this good straight out of the carboy. I think doing a full-wort boil, cooling quickly to a proper pitching temperature, and pitching healthy yeast, really makes a difference.

The best news is that this is definitely in porter territory, the D-180 candi syrup totally gets the job done. Can't recommend it enough. Only thing is, it's a bit sweet--I should have increased the hops, rather than decreasing them, and maybe reduced the licorice and sarsaparilla by about 0.5 oz each. The licorice and sarsaparilla add a LOT of sweetness--in fact, I'm going to recommend using licorice root to anyone seeking some unfermentable sweetness in a beer. (In case you guys don't know, licorice root does NOT taste like licorice candy--licorice candy is mostly anise-flavored, and licorice root is totally different. It possesses a very mild flavor that's almost all sweetness, with just a hint of earthiness). Still, it's very tasty, even my girlfriend liked it (which says a lot, as she's usually as critical of my beers as I am)...definitely gonna be a crowd-pleaser.

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Old 04-23-2012, 07:46 PM   #9
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Cracked a bottle of the porter today. Fully carbed already, with a great head--really nice-looking beer, though it could be clearer (should have secondaried it). Still definitely too sweet. Damn that licorice root! If I were to brew this again, I'd chuck the licorice and sarsaparilla, and up the hops considerably. This is a very rich beer as it is, suitable for dessert but not much else. Not the kind of beer you'd want to drink a lot of. If I were to keep the licorice, I'd double or even triple the hops, using some higher AA varieties to go for an imperial porter style.

It's good to know this about licorice, though, because if I ever want to brew a sweet stout, I think 1 oz of licorice root in 2.5 gallons would add the requisite sweetness.

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Old 07-16-2012, 02:51 PM   #10
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I just did a reg cream ale, started with pilsen extract, corn etc. I used a kolsch yeast since my basement sits around 60-65F... gave a nice hint if citrus when i went to bottle... may have to try both these recipes...

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