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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > All Grain & Partial Mash Brewing > Pumpkin Batch Prep. Question
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Old 09-02-2009, 02:29 PM   #1
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Default Pumpkin Batch Prep. Question

I'm just about to embark on my first AG pumpkin batch in about a week and have been doing as much research as I can both here on the forums and online. I am on the fence about using some local pumpkins or canned pumpkin. I understand the chances of a stuck sparge and having to use a bit less pumpkin but has anybody tried both methods and found one better? I was thinking about cutting out some chunks and grating them rather than pureeing to avoid the stuck sparge(other than the sticky stuff).

Also, has anybody ever fremented their beer in the pumpkin after? I have heard of this being done and seen pictures of a brew done in a pumpkin but also heard of the tops blowing off even with an airlock on. Thanks guys.

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Old 09-02-2009, 03:00 PM   #2
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I've been curious about fermenting the wort in a pumpkin before as well, but the possibility of an infection worries me. I've never used real pumpkin in a batch, and never mashed pumpkin since before this year I was only doing PM's. From what I understand using real pumpkin might prevent a stuck sparge, but you'll get less pumpkin taste out of it. Even some of the big guys like New Holland use canned pumpkin. I've also heard of people adding up to 1.5 pounds of rice hulls and sparging in under 30 minutes with canned pumpkin. It's really whatever method you want to go with, just make sure you do your method the right way.

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Old 09-02-2009, 03:03 PM   #3
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I did my first pumpkin ale the other day and the canned pumpkin will definitely make for a slow sparge. Be prepared for a very vigorous fermentation you will need a blow off. Other than that I can't be of any help but I wish you luck.

John

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Old 09-02-2009, 03:08 PM   #4
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Fermenting in a pumpkin is an awesome idea! I've never heard of that before. Im gonna brew my pumpkin ale in a week or so and will try this. I think I will get my regular 6.5 gallons for the boil, to ferment in a carboy. then run off some more to make a mini 1 gallon batch and use this for the pumpkin. I think it would be a great experiment. The biggest problem will definitley be sanitation, i wonder if i could spary a little bit of star san in the pumpkin, or else just use a very sanitized knife and spoon to clean it out. Im excited for this!

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Old 09-02-2009, 03:22 PM   #5
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Here's a great thread for all your pumpkin brew questions
http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f12/pumpkin-beers-discussion-developing-recipes-tips-tricks-good-practices-131786/Pumpkin Beers


Here's the brewing in a pumpkin blog
How To Brew Pumpkin Beer in a Pumpkin, in 20 Easy Steps | Sloshspot Blog

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Old 09-02-2009, 05:21 PM   #6
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Awsome, thanks for all the replies and the links to the pumpkin brewing sites. I think I'm going to run off a gallon into a pumpkin and leave it in my cold cellar so it doesn't explode cause of the heat and a very vigorous fermentation. As for wild yeast in the pumpkin or getting into the pumpkin(if there is any) I'm not sure what'll happen with that but I'll let you guys know how it goes and post some pictures as well if I can.

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Old 09-02-2009, 05:46 PM   #7
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If it matters to you much, canned pumpkin (ex. Libby's), typically isn't pumpkin at all, but a different type of squash. Also, you might not tell much difference, as the pumpkin itself doesn't lend much flavor to the finished beer - in my opinion. It's there after the mash (as a sort of earthy, vegetable flavor/smell) but after ferment & spicing, i think it gets lost very easily. As long as you have the spices in line, canned vs. fresh shouldn't matter.

As for fermenting IN a pumpkin, i would predict and infection of some sort. Not necessarily a show stopper, but something funky nonetheless. Worth experiementing with, though, as i know i'll never have the ballz enough to do it.

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Old 09-02-2009, 09:34 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cactusgarrett View Post
If it matters to you much, canned pumpkin (ex. Libby's), typically isn't pumpkin at all, but a different type of squash.
LIBBY'S Nutriton - NESTLE VeryBestBaking.com
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Old 09-03-2009, 12:55 PM   #9
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I stand by my statement, though i still consider it to be "pumpkin".

Quote:
"100% pure pumpkin" crows the Libby web site. They announce that they only use "a special variety of pumpkin called the Dickinson." But is that really pumpkin? Experts disagree. For one, it's not orange. The Dickinson Field squash belongs to a species known as Cucurbita moschata, sharing a genus (Cucurbita) with the Jack-O-Lantern pumpkins, but betraying its Halloween-y origins with a decidedly tan skin. A little like the butternut squash - and, in fact, the Dickinson cross-polinates with the butternut.

Despite its tan skin, the Dickinson has that lovely orange flesh you expect from your pumpkin (no artificial coloring necessary). It has all the vitamins and minerals you know and love. It tastes great (and - if you really want to know - those pretty orange-skinned pumpkins? they don't taste so good). It's just that the pumpkin on the label, the one with the bright orange skin, is a bit of a white lie.
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Old 09-03-2009, 01:36 PM   #10
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There was a thread here a few years ago where someone fermented in a pumpkin. It did NOT go well! The pumpkin is essentially embedded with bacteria and there's no real way to sanitize it for the wort. The experimenter ended up getting a soggy moldy pumpkin with soggy moldy wort inside.

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