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Old 10-22-2011, 03:03 AM   #1
Synapsis
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Default Paleo Beer Questions

I'm fairly new to homebrewing and to the website, and I have a couple of questions about a possible paleo beer. I think paleo has been explained a little bit on a few other threads, but basically the major issue with brewing a paleo beer is that I can't have any grains. Does anyone know of a good substitute for grains in brewing?

After looking around at the site, some of the ideas I've come up with that may fit the bill...

  • Doing a cider of some sort using fresh apples and honey to sweeten.
  • I think I could get away with using natural Sorghum and Sorghum Syrup, but I've never used those in a recipes before. I saw a pumpkin recipe that sounded delicious, but it called for baking the Sorghum. Not sure what the natural state of Sorghum is, but it sounds like a grain.
  • I could do a mead or wine, but I'm really more of a beer person.
  • I really like the idea of a pumpkin beer. Can I do a beer with no grains and pumpkin?

If there's already an active thread that discusses these issues, I would really appreciate a link.

There are 2 worst case scenarios in my opinion for not finding any substitutes, and neither is that terrible. The first is that I just brew the beer I like and have it on my cheat days. The second is that I just try a little bit of chemistry and see what I get. Any suggestions or hints would be greatly appreciated.

Cheers!
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Old 10-22-2011, 05:06 AM   #2
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Considered lambics and meads, perhaps? You don't get more Stone Age than leaving a bucket of fruit squish or honey water around until magic (i.e. wild yeast) turns it into booze.

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Old 10-22-2011, 07:08 AM   #3
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Hey. I'm actually paleo too so it's nice to have a fellow paleo here. Check out my stout that I brewed http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f164/gf-...-stout-264594/ It's a little involved if you've never brewed anything before. I'd suggest edwort's apfelwein as a starter. I brewed a modified pumpkin spice which I tried for the first time a few hours ago. For that, I'd suggest this recipe here http://brew.dkershner.com/2009/glute...kin-spice-ale/ It's pretty tasty, but, as a personal note, I don't do great with sorghum. I don't get bloated like I do with sorghum, but I get a different sort of drunk. Look in the sticky about malting your own gf grains and check out some of my other questions/posts. Personally, I seem to do well with malted buckwheat, but it is a lot more work, especially for your first brew. I'm with you though. I'm still learning but if you have any questions feel free to PM me.

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Old 10-22-2011, 07:22 AM   #4
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just a thought.....

If you don't have an allergy to grains or celiac, and are just doing this as a diet because it feels good to you.

then what is it about converting grain starches to sugars and the converting those sugars to alcohol that is different than taking other starches and converting them to sugar and then converting them to alcohol?

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Old 10-22-2011, 04:17 PM   #5
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@dramirezpa To be honest, for mre it's really more of an experiment. I can tell you that eating different starches makes me feel totally different. So, I'm really trying to see if brewing a different type of beer makes me feel any different.

To the rest of you, thanks for the info. If I try anything, I'll make sure to post it here.

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Old 10-22-2011, 04:54 PM   #6
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+1 to EdWort's apfelwein.

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Old 10-22-2011, 08:09 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Synapsis View Post
@dramirezpa To be honest, for mre it's really more of an experiment. I can tell you that eating different starches makes me feel totally different. So, I'm really trying to see if brewing a different type of beer makes me feel any different.

To the rest of you, thanks for the info. If I try anything, I'll make sure to post it here.
I'm not trying to be an instigator, just curious. If your mash passes the iodine test there are no starches in the wort, right?
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Old 10-23-2011, 03:38 AM   #8
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Mead, wine, cider. Honey & fruit.
Sorghum, millet, rice, which we gluten free brewers use are grains. Thus off limits.

In order to convert any other item, including grain, into sugar, you have to have enzymes. Ideally both alpha and beta (and gamma?) enzymes. We gluten free people have issues sourcing the enzymes, (alpha can be found, beta, not so much.)

It's possible to use pumpkin or sweet potato and convert those to sugar. You may need to include an enzyme amount. This would usually be from grain. There are a lot of articles this time of month about pumpkin beer and it's history.
There's pumpkin beer, which is made from pumpkin, but may be more akin to a wine.
And then there's pumpkin beer that people are more familiar with which may not contain any pumpkin at all. Just spice that makes people think of pumpkin pie.
http://drinks.seriouseats.com/2011/0...y-brewing.html
This includes links to old books that reference pumpkin beer made from only pumpkin. Including a book from the 80's that references an article from 1771 saying to juice a pumpkin, boil the juice add hops and ferment like malt.

Which reminds me that I need to juice my pie pumpkin to flavor my GF spiced beer.

If you truly want to go paleolithic. Get a dried, hollowed out gourd, or cured animal skin as a pouch, add squished fruit, and let it naturally ferment.

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Old 05-27-2014, 10:47 PM   #9
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Default Paleo Beer

I'm on my third batch of paleo friendly beer.

Ingredients for 5 gal batch

Roasted buckwheat (is actually a fruit seed that is related to rhubarb and sorrel making it a suitable substitute for grains)
2 lbs of coconut palm sugar (takes a lot longer to ferment)
4 lbs organic non-gmo beet sugar
small bottle of molasses
1 pack extra dark candi syrup (made with dates)

Yeast - london ale (why - that's what I had in the fridge

Hops of choice

First batch I steeped 2 lbs large flake roasted coconut for flavor. Came out pretty good.

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Old 05-27-2014, 11:10 PM   #10
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Paleo-wise, why are buckwheat seeds fine and cereal grains bad, since mankind was cultivating various grains thousands of years before anyone ever planted buckwheat, and harvesting them in the wild for thousands of years before that?

Also: why is sugar from dates acceptable, but not sugar from sugar cane or beets?

It seems to me common guidelines for a paleo diet are rather arbitrary and illogical.... and that people have unrealistic ideas about what our hunter-gatherer ancestors did and didn't eat. They were omnivores; they ate pretty much anything that didn't eat them first -including wheat, rice, and other grain.

add: I'm not trying to start yet another paleo war. As I've said before: if it's a diet that works for you, have at it. But it seems to me the rationales behind it are pretty shaky. Example: the early whites to arrive in North America almost universally commented on what strong, healthy people the Indians were (the ones that didn't die from newly-introduced diseases, anyway). Yet a major part of most Indian diets was corn, which is strictly verboten in paleo because it's a grain...

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