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Old 01-28-2007, 03:44 AM   #1
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Default specialty grains

Is there any way to know which specialty grains have to be mashed vs steeped?

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Old 01-28-2007, 05:03 AM   #2
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Yes. By reading about them.

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Old 01-28-2007, 05:42 AM   #3
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I am a novice brewer and have 5 brews under my belt (and 3 in my stomach). Three of the five brews came with specialty grains that required steeping up to 170 F. I believe your question has to do with mini-mash brews that require you to mash the grain at certain temperatures. I haven't expanded to the partial mashes or all grains yet (but intend to do so in the future) but specialty grains that require steeping are used to impart tastes and colors to your brews. Mini-mashes are done to increase the sugars available to be converted into alchol and CO2.
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Old 01-28-2007, 06:07 AM   #4
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Any grains that are used for color, unfermentable sweetness/ flavor, and body do not need to be mashed. These include Crystal, dextrin, chocolate, black patent, and special-B to name a few. These grains do not add fermentable sugars to the beer.

Grains that do add fermentable sugars require mashing. The mash converts the starches into sugars. Your base malt, in most cases 2 row or 6 row malt, makes up most of the grain bill for most beers. These grains include, 2 row, Pilsner, British pale malt, and Morris Otter. There are other malts that add fermentables to the wort and they also add sweetness, maltiness, nuttiness and color. These include Munich and Vienna malts.

There are lots of other malts I didn't mention but as Fiery Sword stated read up on them. There is a lot of literature out there that will help you understand malt and grains. God luck.
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