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Old 02-11-2013, 10:43 PM   #1
Broondoon
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Default Water Temperature when adding malt extract

For years I've been following general beer making guidelines and adding my malt extract when the water has reached a boil. The kettle, of course, is removed from heat before adding. In the early days I wan't as attentive and had a few foamy boil overs, which were a pain.
Recently, a candy-maker told me that if I add my sugary substance to low temperature water then bring it up to a boil slowly, while stirring to ensure nothing burns to the bottom, that it's better for the sugars.

So, I'd like to know, can I add malt extract to cold water or does it have to be boiling? Has anyone experimented with water temps?

Thanks.

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Old 02-11-2013, 11:50 PM   #2
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I guess you could do it that way. I don't think it needs to be cold though. Problem is if you steep any spec grains then top off with your boil water it may be luke warm. Extracts are boiled from the company. Extract is super thick when cold. I put mine into a pot on the stove with water to warm it.

I do late additions with my extract. After i steep i add my boil water, bring to a boil then add about 1/4 to1/2 of the extract. The rest i put in close to or at flame out. This late addition technique is to prevent scorching the wort "burnt taste" as well as color "all extract in at once will make the beer darker". As far as foaming i use Fermcap-s. It eliminates and boil overs or blow offs.

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Old 02-12-2013, 07:30 PM   #3
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I finally broke down and bought a hard copy of Palmer's 3rd edition of "How to Brew" and I just happened to be reading chapter 7 on Boiling and Cooling. He mentions in a sidebar that DME is easiest to dissolve in cold water, whereas in hot water it has the tendency to clump. On the other hand LME is easier to dissolve in hot water.

Nothing wrong with adding DME pre-boil by this train of thought.

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Old 02-14-2013, 07:56 PM   #4
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You could always just add the extract at knockout. Youre still adding when the water is hot and theres no need to worry about boil over.

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Old 02-14-2013, 10:21 PM   #5
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+1 for late extract addition. There are a ton of good threads on here about it.

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Old 02-14-2013, 11:34 PM   #6
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When I use grains I end up using 3 pots to make beer. I use one smaller pot, about 4 quarts in size. One 4 gallon pot and one 8 or 5 gallon pot depending on if I am doing a full or partial boil. I steep in the small pot at the same time I am heating up water in the other pots. About a gallon in the 4 gallon pot and the rest of the boil water in the largest pot. This way I don't wait as long for the water to come to a boil. Once the steep is done I pour the grains and water through a strainer into the biggest pot and rinse them with the water from the 4 gallon pot.

Any LME I use I put in an ice cream bucket filled with hot tap water. I add it whenever the mood strikes me. At least some at the start but most at flameout.

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Old 02-14-2013, 11:37 PM   #7
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If you're doing a full boil and you have removed it from the heat or killed the flame while adding, then what temperature you add it at doesn't really matter too much.

If you're doing a partial boil and/or trying to hit high IBU numbers, then a late extract addition is your best bet.

A late malt extract will affect color more than taste if you're already doing full boils.

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Old 02-15-2013, 12:50 PM   #8
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Sidebar question on full boil vs partial boil...

I think I understand from a technical perspective that a full boil (for a 5 gal batch) would be starting with something on the order of 6-7 gallons then boiled down to hit the ~5 gal target OG. Further, that partial boils are usually a fair bit less than starting with 6-7 gal. Perhaps on the order of 2.5 gal.

So, if I start with ~5 gal, and make additional water additions as the boil goes to keep the volume about 5 gal would this be considered more of a full boil or more still a partial boil?

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Old 02-15-2013, 01:02 PM   #9
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From a candy-makers perspective, it is better to follow the procedure he described... to make candy. But for the purposes of making beer, you want that full rolling boil going for the majority of brewing time. I second the advice to add at least 50% of your extract at 5 minutes left in the boil or flameout.

Is it weird that I've never had a boilover, or scorched extract despite stirring DME into my kettle over an active flame? My yeast starter wort usually wants to boilover, but I never have to babysit my main volume of kettle wort.

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Old 02-15-2013, 01:04 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by whoaru99 View Post
Sidebar question on full boil vs partial boil...

I think I understand from a technical perspective that a full boil (for a 5 gal batch) would be starting with something on the order of 6-7 gallons then boiled down to hit the ~5 gal target OG. Further, that partial boils are usually a fair bit less than starting with 6-7 gal. Perhaps on the order of 2.5 gal.

So, if I start with ~5 gal, and make additional water additions as the boil goes to keep the volume about 5 gal would this be considered more of a full boil or more still a partial boil?
I'd consider it a partial because you're probably getting the lesser hop utilization that a partial boil typically brings with it. The difference might be negligible unless you're shooting for over 100 IBU.

If you have a recipe, I can play with it later in BeerSmith and see what the difference comes out to.
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