I am a 7th grade science teacher who just happens to brew....I want to make root beer with my students and I think I have most of the lab planned.I am using Gnome extract and following the recipe from the Gnome website, just scaling it down to a 2L (1/2 gal) size for each group of kids.
The plan is:
Put kids in groups of 4
Each group get one clean 2 liter bottle, .4 oz Gnome Root Beer extract, 8 oz sugar, 1500 ml water, 1 2000 ml beaker, 1Hot plate.
1.Students heat 1500 ml water to 130f, add .4 oz extract and 8 oz sugar.
2. Stir to solution.
3. Remove beaker from heat, cool in cold water bath in lab sink to 80f.
4. Add chilled extract solution to 2 liter bottle, top off with water. Put cap on tightly and shake to mix new water well.
5. Bring bottle(labeled with sharpie) to walk in fridge in cafeteria.
6. Let root beer chill overnight to 40f and force carbonate at 40 psi. I plan to hook up each bottle to a Carbonator at 40 psi and shake hard for about 1 minute, then let rest again in fridge overnight.
6. Day 3 -enjoy!
My real question is: Will the force carbonating method work if I just hook up each bottle for a minute or so and shake it until I hear no more CO2 entering the rootbeer? I am I right that root beer is usually served around 3.0 volumes? ( I will try this at home first-but won't be able to do so for a while.)
Does anyone see any errors in my plan? Any wisdom?
By the way, the lesson does target National Science Standards: concentrations, dilution, solubility, solutions, solutes, pressure, energy, applied lab skills. It is also fun and yummy, which is huge for 12 year olds (and 38 year olds!)I just had to throw that in, as my principal was on my case