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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Extract Brewing > To boil or not to boil Coopers kits?
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Old 04-14-2013, 05:46 AM   #1
badbaker44
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Default To boil or not to boil Coopers kits?

Pretty much a newbie here. Have made a couple batches and just finished drinking my keg of Coopers English bitter. I really enjoyed it and boiled the kit for an hour with 10 liters of water and 1 kg of DME. Added 9 liters of cold water to chill it down, pitched some Nottingham yeast and fermented it in the primary for three week before I kegged it and added Co2.

Here is my question - do I need to boil it or not? I have done a Munton's kit twice without the boil and got a really "cidery" tasting beer that wasnt drinkable. I also used 500 grams of DME and 500 grams of dextrose. Could the off flavors come from an infection or from the dextrose?

I have gone to boiling the extract because my buddy has be doing it this way for years and he brews some really good beers from extract kits.

I would really appreciate some feedback.

Thanks,

Ian

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Old 04-14-2013, 06:08 AM   #2
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Always boil

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Old 04-14-2013, 07:17 AM   #3
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A pre hoped extract in a can is different than a extract kit. Pre hoped extract i would not boil. You will lose all your hops flavor,bitterness and aroma. If you really want to make quality beer with extract. Go with a custom kit.

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Old 04-14-2013, 06:06 PM   #4
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Never boil pre-hopped extracts,dry or liquid! It converts the flavor & aroma hops to bittering,ruining the flavor profile. Not to mention,the LME style cans will also darken & get that twang from mailard reactions. I use the plain DME in the boil for hop additions,adding the remaining extracts at flame out.
This gets rid of the twang,giving better flavor & keeps the color lighter as intended.

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Old 04-14-2013, 06:21 PM   #5
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Here is an hour long podcast on subject:
http://thebrewingnetwork.com/shows/698

http://s125483039.onlinehome.us/arch...er11-29-10.mp3

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Old 04-15-2013, 05:40 AM   #6
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I have been brewing coopers kits for many years and you do not want to boil the kits. You just need to open the can and dump it in the fermentor. Boiling it will darken the malt and mess with the hops which have allready been boiled into the extract.

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Old 04-15-2013, 01:55 PM   #7
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When I'm doing a Coopers Kit based recipe that doesn't involve grain or hops the only thing I boil is my counter top kettle.

I put about 2 litres of just boiled water in my fermenter to dissolve any dry ingredients. While I'm doing this I boil the kettle again. Once the dry ingredients are dissolved and the LME from the kit is mixed into the fermenter I used the boiled water from the kettle to rinse out the can. Once again I top up the kettle and turn it on to boil another 2 litres. This last 2 litres is only used if I need to make temperature adjustments when topping off the fermenter. The reason I boil water for temperature adjustment instead of using the hot water tap is because I have a decent charcoal filter on the cold water line in my kitchen. I prefer all my "beer making" water come from that faucet

Technically you could do the whole process with water that is close to your fermentation temperature but it would be a real pain in the ass to get everything dissolved and mixed up properly.

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Old 04-15-2013, 11:24 PM   #8
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Wow thanks to everyone who has responded to my questions. The reason I boiled the extract kit was when I make the extract kits with just boiled water from a kettle they turned out horrible! I think I may have had an infection but who knows? They were watery and they had a very distinct "cidery" taste with off Flavors. I am an artisan baker so I very much understand the Maillard reaction and how boiling will darken the malt due to this reaction. I didn't really mind this as I have been making dark beers only.

Here is another question - could I bring my water to a boil on my stove, flame out an add 500 grams DME and 500 grams dextrose as well as the can of coppers extract? Mix them all together and add them to my fermenter, as enough cold water to bring down the temp and pitch yeast at appropriate temp?

I want to make a Mexican Cervasa an I want that lighter color. I am thinking if I don't boil the can but add the DME an dextrose at flame out with the can I should get a decent beer?

Thanks for any and all input.

Ian

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Old 04-15-2013, 11:43 PM   #9
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Wonder why the other kits you did were ciderey.

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Old 04-16-2013, 12:39 AM   #10
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Good question, that's what I have been asking myself. Could have the dextrose done this? I have read that it could... I have avoided using it in batches after these and have not had that flavour. I used the yeast from under the lid and didn't hydrate it in water first, just dry pitched it. no longer do this and no longer use the yeast from the can. I have switched to Nottingham ale yeast that i hydrate first before pitching. I have also use some smack packs and have liked the results. Maybe the wort was too warm when I pitched the yeast and perhaps gave me these "cidery" notes? Like I said earlier, the beer was just undrinkable in every way!

Like bread baking, brewing has so many variables and I am trying to understand them all.

Thanks for all the input as I really appreciate it all!

Ian

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