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Old 06-22-2012, 04:50 AM   #1
wretchedgirl
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Default Steeping grains.

hello everyone!

i have made beer before, but am now stepping up to steeping grains and adding this to my wort. i am currently making a NZ draught.

i have a 23L keg, and i have 100g of caramalt grains.

i would like to know how much water i need to steep these grains in, and for how long for? do you guys have any special tricks/tips on how you steep grains to get the maximum flavour out of them?

here are some pictures:

http://imgur.com/a/8AUnf#0

1. all my ingredients. beer stuff, extract, beer finings and caramalt bag
2. my 23l keg
3. my bag of caramalt.

any advice and help would be greatly appreciated

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Old 06-22-2012, 05:21 AM   #2
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http://beermaking.ca/extract.html#brew


those are the instructions I started with. Pretty simple.
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Old 06-22-2012, 01:33 PM   #3
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You want between 1-1.5 quarts of water for every 450 grams. This is from John Palmer's How to Brew, and while it's talking about mashing, similar principles of water ratio apply.

From Palmer's How to Brew:
"The grist/water ratio is the least significant factor influencing the performance of the mash. A thinner mash of more than 2 quarts of water per pound of grain dilutes the relative concentration of the enzymes, slowing the conversion, and leads to quicker denaturating, but could ultimately lead to a more fermentable mash, because the enzymes are not inhibited by a high concentration of sugars. A stiff mash of less than 1.25 quarts of water per pount is better for protein breakdown and results in a faster overall starch conversion, but the resultant sugars may be less fermentable and could result in a sweeter, maltier beer."

When steeping in an extract, I would hold it to half an hour for time. However, in my opinion, if you're steeping grains, you might as well go into partial mash at the very least - get more fermentable sugars, and give yourself more options.

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Old 06-22-2012, 01:39 PM   #4
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The above advice is great for when you start doing a partial mash beer, but when you do steeping grains the water to grain ratio doesn't matter. Steeping specialty grain is like making tea. You're looking for color and flavor, but not fermentable sugars. I fill my grain bag with the specialty grains and drop the bag into the water once it starts to get hot. I let it steep in the water for about half an hour or until the temperature reaches 170 degrees F.

I've heard of people doing a sort of sparge with steeping grains by hanging a colander over the brew kettle and pouring water over the grains, but I've never seen the point.

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Old 06-22-2012, 02:40 PM   #5
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"Steeping specialty grain is like making tea. You're looking for color and flavor, but not fermentable sugars."

While you certainly get color and flavor, you most certainly also get fermentable sugars from anything that doesn't require a mash for conversion. eg crystal. The starches in those have already been broken down by the same heating process that gives them their roasted flavor and color.

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Old 06-22-2012, 02:50 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Uziyahu View Post
The above advice is great for when you start doing a partial mash beer, but when you do steeping grains the water to grain ratio doesn't matter. Steeping specialty grain is like making tea. You're looking for color and flavor, but not fermentable sugars. I fill my grain bag with the specialty grains and drop the bag into the water once it starts to get hot. I let it steep in the water for about half an hour or until the temperature reaches 170 degrees F.

I've heard of people doing a sort of sparge with steeping grains by hanging a colander over the brew kettle and pouring water over the grains, but I've never seen the point.
This is the same process I have used and a couple of my extract brews would rate in the top of all my brews. The timing and the temperature reaching 170° was always between 20 minutes and 25 minutes. I was timing at 20 minutes.
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Old 06-22-2012, 02:59 PM   #7
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I found I got the best flavor when did a full volume boil (don't add fresh water after brewing. For a 5 gallon batch boil 6 gallons. Grains will soak up some and some will be boiled off. This will leave you with roughly 5.5 gallons for fermentation.

Anyhow. Bring water to 165-170 degrees. Put grains in muslin bag and add to kettle and let steep like tea for 30-60 minutes. I tie some string to the bag to help taking it out. DO NOT SQUEEZE the grain bag when done. This will extract tannins. You can let it drain but DO NOT SQUEEZE. Remove grain bag and continue on like a normal extract batch.

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