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Old 09-29-2010, 01:58 PM   #1
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Default BYO's Method of Steeping Grains

I was reading the most recent BYO magazine, which is centered on extrac brewing, and was curious what their process would be as I am always seeking new / better ways for my process. I was curious if anyone has ever done their method of steeping grains as I heat the water to 155 F and leave for 30 mins. Theres method is: When water reaches 140 F put grains in and continue to heat, once water temp reaches 170 F, about 20 mins, pull grains out.

I don't know about you guys, but it doesn't take my water 20 mins to go from 140 to 170. Also, isn't 170 high? Just curious what everyone else thinks. Thanks.

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Old 09-29-2010, 02:03 PM   #2
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170 degrees is the upper limit of the recognized "safe" temperature. By that I mean, you can be safe in not pulling out any tannins from the husks at temperatures of 170 or below. So, I'd say 170 is ok.

I'm sure that BYOs method is fine. What I recommend is a bit different though. I recommend always using 1.5 quarts of water per pound of grain and adding the grain bag when the water is 160-170 degrees. Stir it up, and let it sit for 30 minutes and keep the grain/water in the 150-155 range. Then remove the grains to a strainer and pour over 170 degree water to reach your boil volume.

The reason I recommend something a bit differently is actually because it's easier. Sometimes you have steeping grains only, sometimes steeping grains along with base grains, sometimes adjuncts, etc. If you treat every batch like it's a partial mash, you don't have to worry about any conversion or other issues. Using the same ratio of water and grains and the same temperature and the same time each brew really makes it easier in the long run.

Obviously, there is more than one correct way to do it, so I think everybody should do what they find most convenient.

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Old 09-29-2010, 07:09 PM   #3
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I follow BYO's procedure as you describe it. Always worked fine for me.
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Old 09-30-2010, 01:55 AM   #4
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That sounds good to me. When you heat your grains/water, just heat it much slower than you normally would. Don't go much higher than 170 (if at all), because then you start extracting tannins from the grain.
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Old 09-30-2010, 04:36 AM   #5
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im ashamed to admit it, but i tried two 5g batches of partial mash before starting all grain.. and i botched both of them. seems simple, get water to temp x and soak for y time. had a hell ofa time figuring out why i was so low on og points!
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Old 09-30-2010, 04:55 AM   #6
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at 170, the husks of the grain start breaking down, and basically, the grain starts dissolving into the mix. husks have tannin, and that's bad for beer
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Old 09-30-2010, 01:07 PM   #7
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I read the new issue of BYO. I do it a little differently. I put the grains into the cold water and heat it until it reaches 170, then let it sit at that temp for 30 minutes. I also noticed BYO didn't mention rinsing the grains after steeping, which is something I always do.
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Old 09-30-2010, 08:06 PM   #8
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Shouldnt this be moved to the Grain forum?? This is the Extract forum.
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Old 09-30-2010, 08:14 PM   #9
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This is about steeping and specialty grains I think the audience here would get more benefit from the discussion than full grainers.

I was going off old data when I started and was letting it go until I hit boil. Now I'm steeping at 165 for half an hour. I might go partial mash though now that I understand the process better. Meh, it is all about experimenting though as long as I know what the effects of my actions are (IE: tannins over 170, water/grain ratio for partial mash, etc) it is fun to mess around with it.

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Old 09-30-2010, 10:48 PM   #10
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I brew the same way as Yooper.

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