Recipe using field corn or sweet corn - Home Brew Forums
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Old 05-19-2012, 02:48 AM   #1
CEversole
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Jan 2012
Needville, Texas
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Does anyone out there have a recipe using field corn or sweet corn? I'm asking because I come from a farming family, I haven't experimented much with all grain, and I would like to start and try using the grain that we grow. We grow both field and sweet corn, although there is a ton more field corn (used for the ethanol...) but plenty of both types. I would imagine that the sweet corn would be better, but I don't know. What is everyone's opinion on that, or on the use of either? I don't know much about all grain, but would appreciate any input on this subject.



 
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Old 05-19-2012, 04:49 AM   #2
TimpanogosSlim
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Mar 2012
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Short answer: Yes.

Longer answer:

There are a lot of recipes that use maize in one form or other. Usually it's flaked maize, but some of us are cheap bastards who notice that flaked maize is like $2.60/lb at the LHBS while pollenta is $0.92/lb at winco, and just requires that you throw it in a pot with some water and cook it for a bit before mashing with it.

Wikipedia says that humans eat sweet corn and only animals eat field corn but I am inclined to believe that dent corn is a major ingredient in a lot of corn products that people eat. They just don't eat it in kernel form.

There are two major considerations when using non-malted starch based fermentables.

1: The starch has to be gelatinized first. Which is to say cooked. Flaked maize, like flaked oats and flaked wheat, is cooked and dried. The drying part is optional - you can go straight from a rice cooker or pressure cooker or crock pot to the mash tun. I have even heard of cans of creamed corn added directly to the mash with good results.

2: The malted grains have to have enough enzymes to convert the adjunct starches as well as their own. If your unmalted grains and specialty grains are going to be more than say 30% of the grain bill, the base malt may need to be 6-row or pilsner. You can get away with a 60/40 ratio of 6-row and corn, for example.

Largely you're going to be looking at classic american pilsners, cream ales, and that sort of thing. A friend of mine brews a Kentucky Commons that he likes quite well, and he uses corn meal cooked in a rice cooker instead of flaked maize.

But there's no reason you can't use some corn as part of the grain bill for any beer you like. It will just result in a beer with less body than an all-barley grain bill, and it will taste a bit like corn - but that will probably be a plus for you.

Also, I am under the impression that flaked maize is made from degerminated corn, so it has a higher ratio of starch than whole kernels of corn. corn meal and pollenta are also degerminated. I am unsure of how far this might throw off your calculations if you are taking whole dry kernels and running them through a mill for your own brews.

In any case, the end result will be beer, and beer is good, so i say go for it.



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Old 05-19-2012, 05:28 AM   #3
Cubslover
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Dec 2010
West Lafayette, IN
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TimpanogosSlim View Post
Short answer: Yes.

Longer answer:

There are a lot of recipes that use maize in one form or other. Usually it's flaked maize, but some of us are cheap bastards who notice that flaked maize is like $2.60/lb at the LHBS while pollenta is $0.92/lb at winco, and just requires that you throw it in a pot with some water and cook it for a bit before mashing with it.

Wikipedia says that humans eat sweet corn and only animals eat field corn but I am inclined to believe that dent corn is a major ingredient in a lot of corn products that people eat. They just don't eat it in kernel form.

There are two major considerations when using non-malted starch based fermentables.

1: The starch has to be gelatinized first. Which is to say cooked. Flaked maize, like flaked oats and flaked wheat, is cooked and dried. The drying part is optional - you can go straight from a rice cooker or pressure cooker or crock pot to the mash tun. I have even heard of cans of creamed corn added directly to the mash with good results.

2: The malted grains have to have enough enzymes to convert the adjunct starches as well as their own. If your unmalted grains and specialty grains are going to be more than say 30% of the grain bill, the base malt may need to be 6-row or pilsner. You can get away with a 60/40 ratio of 6-row and corn, for example.

Largely you're going to be looking at classic american pilsners, cream ales, and that sort of thing. A friend of mine brews a Kentucky Commons that he likes quite well, and he uses corn meal cooked in a rice cooker instead of flaked maize.

But there's no reason you can't use some corn as part of the grain bill for any beer you like. It will just result in a beer with less body than an all-barley grain bill, and it will taste a bit like corn - but that will probably be a plus for you.

Also, I am under the impression that flaked maize is made from degerminated corn, so it has a higher ratio of starch than whole kernels of corn. corn meal and pollenta are also degerminated. I am unsure of how far this might throw off your calculations if you are taking whole dry kernels and running them through a mill for your own brews.

In any case, the end result will be beer, and beer is good, so i say go for it.
You are correct. I modify Corn Starches for use in both food and industrial applications. There are plenty of dent products used in food.
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Old 05-19-2012, 06:15 AM   #4
TimpanogosSlim
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cubslover View Post
You are correct. I modify Corn Starches for use in both food and industrial applications. There are plenty of dent products used in food.
My first real tipoff was the hullabaloo about starlink corn in Mission brand tortilla chips years ago.

Since I'm aware that starlink corn is a field corn strain.

Nothing wrong with starlink. Unless you are a butterfly in it's larval state, or some other form of grub or caterpillar. Then it will kill you by laminating the interior of your digestive tract so that you starve to death - if you eat it right on the stalk. But since i have a primate digestive system, I'm ok with that.

At this point, my assumption is that starlink and other GMO maize with genes that produce traces of protein that insects can't eat and survive have found their way into 99.999% of all corn-based food products. Which is ok for humans because those proteins break down in the presence of moisture, heat, or light, and so quickly that the corn has to actually be growing to protect itself from caterpillars. But it's bad for butterflies and that makes me a little sad.

(For the record, I think that herbicide resistant crops might be a bad idea, but in general i think in 100 years our descendants will be alive largely because of rather than in spite of GMO crops).

(I also wish that the FDA would just decree that caustic soda used to process corn starch into corn sugar/syrup must be food grade caustic soda, and that food grade caustic soda means that it can't be manufactured with a mercury cell process. Why nobody in congress has made that hay bewilders me. Maybe the corn syrup people are just afraid of more attention? I prefer to avoid eating mercury when i have a choice, even if it's only a little mercury. And even if only a small fraction of the caustic soda on the market was manufactured with a mercury cell process.)

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Old 05-19-2012, 02:51 PM   #5
CEversole
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Jan 2012
Needville, Texas
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This is very useful information, thanks guys. I'm going to be working on a recipe over the next few weeks so keep your eyes pealed and I will post it up so you can let me know what you think. As far as field vs. sweet, we eat field corn whole kernel and on the cob just like sweet corn. The only difference is the sweet corn is just that, more sweet than the field corn. I don't think it will hurt anything, I would imagine the flavor would be different between the two.

 
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Old 05-21-2012, 08:57 AM   #6
Cubslover
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Dec 2010
West Lafayette, IN
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TimpanogosSlim View Post
My first real tipoff was the hullabaloo about starlink corn in Mission brand tortilla chips years ago.

Since I'm aware that starlink corn is a field corn strain.

Nothing wrong with starlink. Unless you are a butterfly in it's larval state, or some other form of grub or caterpillar. Then it will kill you by laminating the interior of your digestive tract so that you starve to death - if you eat it right on the stalk. But since i have a primate digestive system, I'm ok with that.

At this point, my assumption is that starlink and other GMO maize with genes that produce traces of protein that insects can't eat and survive have found their way into 99.999% of all corn-based food products. Which is ok for humans because those proteins break down in the presence of moisture, heat, or light, and so quickly that the corn has to actually be growing to protect itself from caterpillars. But it's bad for butterflies and that makes me a little sad.

(For the record, I think that herbicide resistant crops might be a bad idea, but in general i think in 100 years our descendants will be alive largely because of rather than in spite of GMO crops).

(I also wish that the FDA would just decree that caustic soda used to process corn starch into corn sugar/syrup must be food grade caustic soda, and that food grade caustic soda means that it can't be manufactured with a mercury cell process. Why nobody in congress has made that hay bewilders me. Maybe the corn syrup people are just afraid of more attention? I prefer to avoid eating mercury when i have a choice, even if it's only a little mercury. And even if only a small fraction of the caustic soda on the market was manufactured with a mercury cell process.)
These proteins are also removed in the milling process that separates starch from the germ/fiber/protein.

As far as the Causic Soda, I would agree, however we Jet our syrups with HCl.

Honestly though, there are some very nasty chemials used in modifying starches on a molecular level that they rely pretty heavily on proper neutralization and washing to remove.
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Old 06-07-2012, 08:46 PM   #7
drchris83
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Jun 2012
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Since it seems no one else has gotten the idea to brew with frsh sweet corn straight from the cob, I'd be thrilled to know how your brew turned out.
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Old 10-02-2012, 04:25 AM   #8
Radegast
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Jun 2011
Henrico, Virginia
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Any results on this? I also have access to a bunch of fresh corn. If it's right off the cob, there's also the corn cob "milk." They make wine out of it, so why not?
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Old 10-02-2012, 12:25 PM   #9
bobbrews
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Jan 2011
Sierra, Nevada
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TimpanogosSlim View Post
Wikipedia says that humans eat sweet corn and only animals eat field corn
Humans eat field corn... just not Americans.

In Mexico, they use it to create "nixtamal", which is used to make into corn tortillas. It's quite starchier, larger, and more fibrous than sweet white corn. Corn beer has been made for centuries in Central and South America.

 
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Old 10-02-2012, 01:52 PM   #10
drchris83
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Jun 2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bobbrews

Humans eat field corn... just not Americans.

In Mexico, they use it to create "nixtamal", which is used to make into corn tortillas. It's quite starchier, larger, and more fibrous than sweet white corn. Corn beer has been made for centuries in Central and South America.
Any other info on the precolumbian corn beer? All I found on the interwebz was chicha, which is said to become rather bland aftermore than a couple days...


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