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Old 02-13-2012, 08:45 PM   #1
FreeLordBrewing
 
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All of my batches so far were pre-assembled kits and have contained specialty grains that I steep prior to bringing the wort to a boil, then follow by adding the malt (dried/liquid) extract, and then hops.

is this partial mashing??? I did a search but ended up confusing myself some more, any help with this noob would be appreciated ha ha

 
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Old 02-13-2012, 08:49 PM   #2
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extract with steeping grains.

PM involves mashing some grains to make your wort... Steeping grains is not the same as mashing.

 
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Old 02-13-2012, 08:54 PM   #3
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Mashing and steeping are very similar, with the important difference being that using steeping grains doesn't provide any fermentable sugars for your yeasties to use to make alcohol. Steeping specialty grains the way your kit has you do it only provides color/flavor.

I am 99% sure that is correct, as I am new to this stuff too.
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Old 02-13-2012, 08:58 PM   #4
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Steeping grains is for color, flavor, and a small amount of sugar. you add extract malt sugars for the brew.

PM (or mini-mash, because you are mashing and you can't partially mash grains) is used for adding color, flavor, and a larger amount of sugar. usually done with Half the pounds of full AG.

AG is using just grains and extracting the sugars from the grain.


Partial (or mini) mash uses extract as its base malt instead of a larger grain bill for mashing. usually done on stove-top as a brew-in-a-bag (BIAB) method. excellent way to get your feet wet to going to AG.

hope this helps
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Old 02-13-2012, 08:59 PM   #5
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Steeping can provide fermentable sugars, though most of the grains that people steep (crystals, roasts, etc.) don't contribute much that way. The big difference is that mashing uses water in a narrow temperature range to let a grain's natural enzymes convert starches to sugars. In steeping, you don't get this, or at least not much.
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Old 02-13-2012, 09:00 PM   #6
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What you did was steeping specialty grains:

http://www.howtobrew.com/section2/chapter13.html

Here is a fairly technical description of what mashing is:

http://www.howtobrew.com/section3/chapter14-1.html

You steep while you mash, but not the other way around. Mashing involves the extra process of keeping your grains at a certain temperature for long enough that the diastatic power within the malt enzymes convert grain starches to sugars. The extract that you use is basically the results of a mash, either completely dehydrated to create DME or reduced to a syrup for LME.
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Old 02-13-2012, 09:30 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TTB-J View Post
What you did was steeping specialty grains:

http://www.howtobrew.com/section2/chapter13.html

Here is a fairly technical description of what mashing is:

http://www.howtobrew.com/section3/chapter14-1.html

You steep while you mash, but not the other way around. Mashing involves the extra process of keeping your grains at a certain temperature for long enough that the diastatic power within the malt enzymes convert grain starches to sugars. The extract that you use is basically the results of a mash, either completely dehydrated to create DME or reduced to a syrup for LME.
So as I understand it from the links above... stepping is heating grain at held temperature and removing the grain while mashing is dissolving at a certain temperature which is absorbed into the wort(ex. grain run through a mill and dissolved)?

 
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Old 02-13-2012, 09:37 PM   #8
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Steeping dissolves flavor and color off the grain. Mashing converts starch to sugar. If someone were to watch you do both operations and didn't know any better, it would look identical. From a chemical perspective, they are extremely different.
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Old 02-13-2012, 09:39 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BW210 View Post
So as I understand it from the links above... stepping is heating grain at held temperature and removing the grain while mashing is dissolving at a certain temperature which is absorbed into the wort(ex. grain run through a mill and dissolved)?
No, in both cases you're taking some things out and leaving other things behind. With mashing, you are using enzymes to convert starches into sugars, which are dissolved into the wort. With steeping, you are dissolving various compounds that are already present in the grain when you buy it.

To simplify a bit: steeping is purely about dissolving, mashing is about chemical conversion.
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Old 02-13-2012, 09:50 PM   #10
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When grains are malted they need to be dried to stop the sprouting process. With minimal heat these grains will contain the enzymes needed to convert the starches in the grain to sugars that can be fermented. These minimally heated grains will be called the base malts. As the temperature of the grains is raised the enzymes are gradually destroyed so that less of the starches can be converted. There are other processes that change the flavors of the grains too to make caramel malts and honey malts. These processes also destroy the enzymes so these grains contribute little sugars but more color and flavor.

If you steep grains like 2 row or pale malt at a specific range of temperatures you will convert the starches into sugars. You can combine these base malts with caramel, chocolate, roasted barley, black malt, etc in a partial mash where you get some grains to convert and the rest add color and flavor at the same time but only the base grains will provide (convert) the sugars.

 
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