So here's my first try at a pumpkin beer. I heard of a weird technique where you ferment your beer in a pumpkin. Will it work? Maybe not. But why am I doing it? Because I "pump-can"!
So I started out by taking the guts out of a pumpkin and then filled it with water and let it sit for about a half hour. Then I dumped out this water into a pot heated it up to about 155 F and steeped a 15 oz can of pumpkin puree with 1 lb of 2 row pale ale malt for about half an hour.
Next, I poured myself a beer. Then I added a pinch of Fuggles and Hersbruckers, and brought the wort to a boil. Once at a boil I added 1.25 lbs of hopped amber malt extract and 1.25 lbs unhopped amber malt extract along with another pinch of each type of hops and a pinch of brown sugar, and boiled for about 15 minutes.
I stuck my pumpkin in my biggest pot. With a minute to go in the boil, I added more of the same hops and 1/2 a coarsely chopped nutmeg, 1/2 cinnamon stick, and some crushed allspice.
With the wort off the burner but still very hot, I carefully added about 1.5 gallons into the pumpkin. The remainder (less than 0.5 gallon) I stuck in a 1 gallon jug. I stuck both in the basement to cool down, with the lid on top of the pumpkin. My hopes is that the very hot wort will kill any bad bacteria in the pumpkin while at the same time drawing out more pumpkiney goodness out of the pumpkin.
When the wort in the pumpkin gets to yeast pitching temp, I will add some yeast and seal the pumpkin lid and around the airlock with wax. I'll probably ferment for two weeks (assuming nothing goes wrong) and then bottle. Hopefully there won't be any pumpkin explosions!