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Old 08-12-2011, 07:39 PM   #1
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Default recipe help needed

i'm thinking about brewing this and the only thing different i'm going to do is juice the watermelon and strain it then put it into the end of my boil. also i want to just do a primary fermentor and no secondary. was just wondering if any one has tried something like this and if i can ferment the watermelon for 2 weeks with out it rotting or molding. thanks for the help!!


Watermelon Wheat

7 lbs. Liquid Wheat Extract
.5 lbs. Crystal Malt(10L)
.25 Honey Malt
.25 White Wheat Malt
2 tsp. Irish Moss
.75 oz. Simcoe hops-60 min.
.25 oz. Northern Brewer hops-60 min.
.25 oz. Simcoe hops-1 min.
.25 oz. Northern Brewer hops-1 min
20 lb. watermelon with the rhind off and pureed
3/4 cup corn sugar(for priming)
White Labs320 American Hefeweizen Ale Yeast, Wyeast 1010 American Wheat, or your favorite yeast

Steep the grains at 155 degrees F. for 30 minutes. Remove the grains, add the extract, and bring to a boil. Throw in the Simcoe and Norther Brewer hops, relax, have a beer, and start getting the watermelon ready. (You don't have to use one watermelon of course. 2 10 pound watermelons would work too. You don't even have to use that much watermelon. It's YOUR beer. Make what you want to drink.) Sterilize a big bowl or pitcher. Perhaps even your primary fermenter. Cut the rhind off the watermelon(s) and puree the fruit in a food processor or blender. You can try to pick the seeds out, but good luck. Cover and set aside. Put the Irish moss in the last 20 minutes or so. Add the 1 minute hops, cool your wort to pitching temperatures, and add in the fruit. Make sure to leave plenty of headspace! 5 gal. of beer+1 gal. of watermelon in a 6 gal. bucket=explosion. An 8 gal. fermenter works great, and you can even use a blow-off tube to be safe. AERATE YOUR WORT. This will help incorporate the fruit and help the yeast in their beginning stages of life. Ferment for five to seven days. Siphon into your secondary fermenter leaving behind all the fruit pulp and dead yeast. Wait another 5 to seven days, bottle or keg and enjoy!

(NOTE- Adding watermelon, or anything that isn't sterile for that matter, directly into your primary fermenter can be dangerous. I felt pretty safe using only the inside of the watermelon. You could add it near the end of the boil to be sure, but it will result in a cloudier beer. This is a hefeweizen style beer anyway so it could most definitely work to your advantage, giving your beer a cloudier appearance. I wanted a very clear American style hefeweizen
and it worked out great. Crystal clear with a tinge of pink. Not too sweet, easy to drink, and it ended up being a pretty strong beer!)

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Old 08-12-2011, 08:27 PM   #2
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I made a watermelon wheat 2 years ago and I just did 1/2g of watermelon juice at the end of primary. It came out great.

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Old 09-12-2011, 06:54 PM   #3
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I'm doing an "end of summer" ale and thinking about adding watermelon juice. OG = 1.052 and used US-05 dry yeast. Fermenting around 63 degrees.

The summer ale has been in the primary carboy for 6 days, and primary fermentation seems to be almost over.

Question - you think I should just rack the fruit juice INTO the primary carboy? Or rack the summer ale over the fruit juice in a secondary? I could do either, but I've heard both options are viable. WhatIsLeftOfYou added right into primary, and that's what I'm thinking to do. ANY input is useful, thank!

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Old 09-12-2011, 07:36 PM   #4
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I did just add my juice to the end of primary, partly because I wanted to turn it around really really quickly (8 days grain to glass). It turned out fine. I'm sure whichever method you choose will make a decent beer though.

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Old 09-12-2011, 07:43 PM   #5
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Thanks for the quick reply! Upper peninsula represent, I was up at Houghton Lake a few weeks ago

Did you sanitize the juice at all?

Also, I'm only going to use about 5 cups of juice. If you think more is needed (in the realm of 1/2 gallon) I could make that happen.

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Old 09-12-2011, 10:02 PM   #6
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Houghton Lake is in the Lower Peninsula, about a 2.5 hours East and 2.5 hours South from where I live.

Anyway, no I didn't sanitize the juice. I did sanitize all of the utensils I used, but not the juice itself. I just didn't want to give the fruit that "cooked" flavor by heating it.

Regarding amount, 5c is about 40% less than what I used, but I don't know how much watermelon character you're going for either. Mine was evident, but certainly not overpowering.

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Old 09-13-2011, 12:18 AM   #7
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Yeah, I know Houghton isn't close...but we took a day trip to Traverse City so that's more in your neighborhood I would guess.

Anyhooooze - I just put 6-7 cups of fresh watermelon juice in my primary. I just sprayed a few shots of diluted star san into the watermelon juice just in case. But I should be cool from the alcohol in the primary. It went from 1.051 to 1.012 in 6 days - so that went well. Also sanitized all my knives, funnels, strainer bags, etc... The fermentation kicked up again WITH A VENGEANCE in about 1 hour.

Now the room smells like watermelon - I'm thinking about bottling in 12 days, you think that's enough time? Or maybe longer?

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Old 09-13-2011, 01:17 AM   #8
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12 days should be fine since you're really only adding a few gravity points' worth of sugar.

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Old 09-13-2011, 01:56 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Unibrow View Post
Yeah, I know Houghton isn't close...but we took a day trip to Traverse City so that's more in your neighborhood I would guess.

Now the room smells like watermelon - I'm thinking about bottling in 12 days, you think that's enough time? Or maybe longer?
Well, Traverse City isn't very close. It's like us saying we went to Cincinnati and were in YOUR neighborhood! I'm about 7 hours away from Traverse City, and I think whatsleftofyou must be about 5 hours away or so.

Anyway, you can bottle when the gravity readings are stable over at least three days. Twelve days might be enough time, but the only way to know is to wait and see. If the fermentation has stopped, and doesn't restart, then it's fine to bottle.
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Old 09-13-2011, 03:37 AM   #10
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Thanks again for your advice. I will bottle the watermelon ALE in 12-13 days and that should be good.

Hey Whats - I was reading your blog, do you have a PM version for your Vanilla Cherry Stout?

Your original recipe

Malt:
10lb (80%) 2-row
1lb (10%) Chocolate Malt
0.5lb (5%) Crystal 40L
0.5lb (5%) Crystal 80L
0.5lb (5%) Roasted Barley
1lb Lactose in boil
Mash at 158

I was thinking to just use
3# of 2 row
.5# of Chocolate malt
all your other adjuncts the same
3# of dark DME
same hops + same yeast + same vanilla/cherry addition

By the way - do you think 1 vanilla bean scraping would be good enough? Thanks

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