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Old 12-08-2010, 09:16 PM   #1
woody189
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Default Steeping vs Mashing

I know the whole extract vs PM vs AG thing has been beaten to death, but I'm still confused.

They both look exactly the same except in PM 1) it's a larger of volume grains that are used in the beginning and 2) there is a sparge.

I read a kajillion things comparing one to the other in terms of what's "better," but I'm still confused about the technical difference.

I've brewed 2 batches so far, both extract. both were basically the same:
1) steep grains and add 1 can of extract and 1 bag of DME then add hops
2) steep grains and add 2 containers of fresher looking liquid extract then add hops


I used 2 "portions" of extract in both my extract brews. Does that mean in PM I would only use 1, or are they 2 different types of ingredients?

Mashing just seems like a larger volume steep. What am i missing?

Thanks

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Old 12-08-2010, 09:24 PM   #2
trevorc13
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Partial mash uses grains that need to have their starches converted to sugar (mashing). You do this by adding malted barley to hot water (~145F-160F deg). The sugar that has been converted is then drained into a pot and the grains rinsed again with more hot water to get the rest of the sugar out. After boiling this with additional water, extract is then added at the end of the boil to bring up the gravity to where you want it.

Extract with grains is just steeping roasted grains in warm or hot water (not above 170f) for flavor and color. Steeping is just soaking grains that have been roasted/kilned to give them a certain flavor, which makes a sort of tea. These grains cannot be mashed because the enzymes that converts the starches are no longer there. They don't give you any sugar to ferment. You add this flavored water to your kettle and then add the extract, where all of your sugar comes from.

In all grain, you don't use any extract. You use grains that need to be mashed along with steeping grains to obtain all of your sugar. This is then sparged and water is collected to get your desired amount. You will have to use about 4 times more grain to get your amount of desired wort.

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Old 12-08-2010, 09:30 PM   #3
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First of all, forget about one method being "better" than another. Better is what gets you good beer, and any one of those methods will do that.

For "extract with steeping grains", you are just using hot water to get some color and flavor out of the grains. All the fermentables are provided by the extract.

To get fermentable sugars out of the grains, you must steep (mash) them at a controlled temperature - roughly 150 to 154 degrees F. - for about an hour. If you use enough grains, you can get enough sugar so that you don't need any extract. If you use extract to boost the sugar content, it's a "partial mash".

Like I said, any method will work. For me, the limiting factor is how much gear I can fit in my kitchen.

No worries!

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Old 12-09-2010, 09:01 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trevorc13 View Post
Partial mash uses grains that need to have their starches converted to sugar (mashing). You do this by adding malted barley to hot water (~145F-160F deg). The sugar that has been converted is then drained into a pot and the grains rinsed again with more hot water to get the rest of the sugar out. After boiling this with additional water, extract is then added at the end of the boil to bring up the gravity to where you want it.

Extract with grains is just steeping roasted grains in warm or hot water (not above 170f) for flavor and color. Steeping is just soaking grains that have been roasted/kilned to give them a certain flavor, which makes a sort of tea. These grains cannot be mashed because the enzymes that converts the starches are no longer there. They don't give you any sugar to ferment. You add this flavored water to your kettle and then add the extract, where all of your sugar comes from.

In all grain, you don't use any extract. You use grains that need to be mashed along with steeping grains to obtain all of your sugar. This is then sparged and water is collected to get your desired amount. You will have to use about 4 times more grain to get your amount of desired wort.
Quote:
Originally Posted by frazier View Post
First of all, forget about one method being "better" than another. Better is what gets you good beer, and any one of those methods will do that.

For "extract with steeping grains", you are just using hot water to get some color and flavor out of the grains. All the fermentables are provided by the extract.

To get fermentable sugars out of the grains, you must steep (mash) them at a controlled temperature - roughly 150 to 154 degrees F. - for about an hour. If you use enough grains, you can get enough sugar so that you don't need any extract. If you use extract to boost the sugar content, it's a "partial mash".

Like I said, any method will work. For me, the limiting factor is how much gear I can fit in my kitchen.

No worries!
Thanks. You guys completely cleared that up for me. Makes a lot sense now.

Frazier, yea, i figured out that no one method is better than the other. Not from experiecne, but ive read enough threads to realize that you can get a very good batch from extract.
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