sounds good, some of the information that was posted is not completely accurate
I will try to clarify a little here : )
2 litres = 1/2 a galon (4.5 litres to a galon)
If you did not need to add any hops (you would know) then it does not matter how much water you boil the LME is, as you are simply disolving the contents of the can so when you add the cool water, you do not have all of your malt at the bottom of the fermenter, hence an extremely high gravity reading
secondly, try VERY hard not to let a hot wort sit out and cool to room temp by itself, as hot wort is what produces diacetyl (tastes like popcorn / butter) which might be desirable in a cream ale, but generally not a great taste. Also, if you let a hot wort cool very slowly, you will not get what is called a cold break. A cold break happens from rapid chilling of the wort, which results in certain chemicals in the wort to be shocked, in a sense. If there is no cold break, you are likely to get chill haze
HOWEVER, this does not need to be worried about with LME, the proccess I use for LME is very simple
1. Stand can of LME in a pot of hot water to soften the contents
2. Pour can into fermenter
3. Add sugar (If using sugar, please, use malt. If uncomfortable, then just use Dextrose but try to avoid <-- will clarify later)
4. Add 1/2 gallon of water
5. Stir with sanitised spoon
6. Top up to 3 gallons
7. Shake fermenter (with lid on) (check that wort is not too hot)
8. Top up to 5 gallons
9. sprinkle yeast on top (do not stir)
whole process takes around 5 mins, and gets a very decent beer (if using a good canned extract)
It sounds like the steps you used come from a brew company that really know what they are doing, and I would guess that aslong as everything was sanitized nicely, your beer is going to be fantastic!
Now, to clarify about sugar
if you use dextrose, it adds absolutley nothing to your beer except alcohol and Co2. Dextrose is a 100% fermentable sugar. The yeast eat it and produce alcohol and Co2 (hence the airlock) Now, this is not so bad, you might think, more alcohol = better beer. Well, not quite. Its what DOESENT ferment into alcohol, that makes good beer. Malt is not 100% fermentable, and what doesnt ferment is what adds character to your beer. for example, its not so watery, its thicker, has a nice thick head, good mouth feel etc. For instance, think of a stout. Lots of malt in stouts, very thick beer, nice compact, thick head, the beer has texture in your mouth etc. Now think of a comercial beer brewed with sugar (budweiser for example) a nice tasting beer, but not as creamy, not as much head, more watery.
So, try using all malt, or atleast, cutting down on the dextrose : D
However, with all that said and done, seems to me like you brewed yourself a real nice kit there, and I would love to say, WELCOME! to one of the greatest hobbies on earth
it can be so satisfying to actually make your own beer! its like baking your own bread. A little bit of love, some care, and a bit of knowledge, and you can make what ever style you want!
let us all know how it goes with your first brew!
Edit: on a side not
I've read the more water you use in your boil, the more efficient your hops will be at bittering. You may want to keep in mind when increasing the amount of water above what the kit recommends that your brew may be hoppier than the recipe & instructions were designed for. If you like hoppy brews, I'm sure it's no problem
This is very true, but its only true when adding hops to your boil. Prehopped extracts have allready had the hops boiled, and therefore there is no chance of getting more bittering from the hops, as there are no more hops to get the alpha acid from. Pure water, when boiled with hops, gives the greatest hop utilization (bitterness from hops) but as you very accuratley stated, this can be a very hoppy beer : D
I am not trying to sound like a smart arse, or come off as some know it all, im just trying to give you a little information that I have learned through mistakes, and to let you know the basics of brewing, and not just how to do it, but why to do it : D it took me a long time to learn it, and this forum was the main place of learning, and now I am just trying to give back to the community!