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Old 01-07-2013, 12:49 AM   #1
naristov
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Default Using Jalapeno tips

I'm going to be making a Jalapeno beer soon. I guess I'm looking for tips to using them.

Its 2.5 gallon batch. I was thinking 2.5 Peppers at flame out and maybe 1 during fermentation.

I was going to freeze them the night before and then bake them for 15 mins. I heard the freezieing helps break the skin for more flavor. For the one going in the carboy I was going to soak in vodka and throw it in after 2 weeks.

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Old 01-07-2013, 04:43 PM   #2
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Jalapenos and other chiles can really get away from you quickly. I'd avoid putting them in at flameout, and then dry-hop with them. Once you start dry-hopping, I'd taste it every other day. You can ALWAYS add more heat, but you can never take it away.

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Old 01-07-2013, 05:44 PM   #3
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If I were to do this (and I never would) I'd split the peppers, strip the guts out, and dice them up a bit and add them as a dry hop.

This gets as much flavor in there without as much heat.

I've had a chili stout and it was almost undrinkable to me. Not the heat though. The flavor of jalepenos with the sweet stout. I've had a pepper porter that was close to being too hot for me to drink too.

The best was a wasabi kolsch. It was made to drink with stuff like sushi. The wasabi flavor and heat were very mild and actually went well with the beer.

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Old 01-07-2013, 05:58 PM   #4
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There are plenty of ways to get chile pepper flavor into a brew, so I'll just let you know what I did for my Hot Blonde Ale:

I cut my peppers (jalapenos) in half lengthwise and then into roughly 3/4" slices to expose plenty of surface area, then soaked them in vodka. I left the seeds and membranes intact, as this is where a lot of the heat lives. I used "regular" 80-proof vodka, but presumably a higher-proof would be a more effective solvent if you wanted to spend the $$$- I just used what I had in the house and it worked well enough, maybe just took longer to get the full extraction than it would with a higher proof. I did 2 or 3 jalapenos in about a pint of vodka and let them soak for about 10 days, then poured it through a coffee filter to strain out the peppers and seeds, leaving just the infused vodka.

As far as getting it into the beer, I added the infusion at bottling time- you've already extracted the flavor with the vodka, so you really aren't gaining anything by adding it earlier. I filled a glass with 12 oz of beer (one bottle's worth) and added the infusion with an eyedropper a little at a time, tasting between additions to see how much would give me the flavor and heat I was looking for. I wound up using about 20mL/bottle, so you can add it by the dropperful- no need to go drop-by-drop unless you're using some really insanely hot peppers. This method worked well and gave me excellent flavor and good heat. One warning though- the flavor remained stable, but the heat diminished a bit in the bottle, so you might want to make it a bit hotter than you think you're going to want it if you use this method.

However, you choose to "pepper" your beer, I hope it turns out great! Enjoy!

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