Ok two not very related questions:
First off, I'm using a kit to do my third batch after a fairly bad 1st batch, and a much better tasting second batch. The kit I have is a coopers English Ale one. Not great tasting but I'm still trying to get a good handle on the whole brewing thing so I can move up to partial mashes without worrying too much about my setup.
Anyway, I was wondering if there's any benefit to leaving my wort in the primary fermenter for longer than it needs to reach it's SG (not sure if that's the right term..?) eg is there a benefit taste wise to just leaving it for a long time in this state? If so, how long is a good amount of time?
Second question, totally un-related. When I've done these kits, the instructions state that you want to get the lid on the fermenter as soon as you've added all the water and yeast. I found the third time again a very nerve racking experience. How long do I have? I'm always careful not to breath into the fermenter etc and I make sure I have super clean hands and that everything is as clean and sterelized as possible but I worry there might be something floating around in the air. It's tricky to get all that syrupy stuff out the can (even after warming the can up.) Does anyone have any tips for speeding that up?
I almost feel fully confident doing the kit beers now... getting there! Got a chest freezer and temp control unit at the weekend so keeping it at the right temp is no longer a prob!