Brewing without malt

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Hii, I was thinking, from origin we are tended to use malt in order to brew beer.
The usual process is of course:
1. Extracting sugar and grain fiber from malt
2. Adding hops
3. Fermenting the solution

But why do we apply this process?
Are there other options?
Like using sugars from the package and fibers from processed grains. Adding only hops to this solution.

If yes, what could be a great recipe?
Would someone be keen to help inventing something like that?
 

BigEd

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The malting process is instrumental in reducing the starches in grain to fermentable sugar through the activation of enzymes which carry on this process. Without malting you have starch only which is not digestible by beer yeast. Commercially extracted malt in dry or syrup form is available for homebrewing (see Extract Brewing section) or you can do it yourself (see All Grain Brewing section). BTW we are not interested in extracting "grain fibers" for brewing beer. Malting is intended to maximize sugar extraction and leave the majority of the other grain components behind.

Now you can use laboratory techniques to convert starch to sugar if you have that knowledge and access if that's what you're aiming at.
 

AlexKay

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Besides, humans and beer co-evolved, so all of the flavor compounds produced by malting and kilning are naturally appealing to us.
 

IslandLizard

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What do you have against using malt?

To make beer we need 4 basic ingredients:
  • Malt
  • Water
  • Hops
  • Yeast
I remember your thread on using chestnuts (and malt) to make a beer. Did you ever try that?
 

Bobby_M

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Hii, I was thinking, from origin we are tended to use malt in order to brew beer.
The usual process is of course:
1. Extracting sugar and grain fiber from malt
2. Adding hops
3. Fermenting the solution

But why do we apply this process?
Are there other options?
Like using sugars from the package and fibers from processed grains. Adding only hops to this solution.

If yes, what could be a great recipe?
Would someone be keen to help inventing something like that?

Why? Because it defines the beverage we call beer. Im not even sure what alternative you are suggesting.
 

MaxStout

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Making hooch in your prison cell sink? ;)

Not sure how using fibers from processed grains will do anything. If you mean foregoing malt and using sugars plus some adjunct grain, that could be doable, but you'll need to add enzymes to convert the starches in those adjuncts.
 

Beermeister32

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By definition, beer is made from malt. You can add adjuncts like corn, wheat, rice, potatoes, etc for starches, but foundationally, it is a product derived of MALT.

You can ferment other materials, but without the malt backbone, it a fizzy, alcoholic “other” product, but is generally not referred to as beer.
 

lurker18

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You 100% CAN make beer without malted grain as long as you have the additional enzymes to get it done. I was involved in the sensory side of a project that was doing this, and at 100% non malted enzyme created beer, it did not taste like beer. Had the alcohol, color, etc, but was not beer. Until it got to about a 60% conventional malt to 40% unmalted enzyme beer, you could always taste there was something off. At the 60-40 blend, there really was not that much difference in the taste.

Now I don't know what was cheaper, and this was about 10 years ago. With the cost of production going up everyday, the benefits of not malting all the barley and doing a blend might make more sense.
 

Protos

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1. Extracting sugar and grain fiber from malt
That's far from all compounds that are extracted during the mash (or form due to the mashing process). There are also hundreds of other, unavailable without the use of malt. They are present in wort in minuscule quantities but are crucial for flavour profile which makes a difference between beer and other fermented drinks.

Would someone be keen to help inventing something like that?
Tshhhhh... Big Beer Industry guys might hear you... 😱
 

McMullan

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Maybe start brewing with a teapot and a tea strainer? I think it could be quite educational. Don’t forget the tea, though. It wouldn’t be tea otherwise 😱
 

monkeymath

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Unlike some of the other posters, I don't think beer necessarily involves malt. To distinguish it from other fermented beverages, it's usually described as obtained from starches or complex carbohydrates. So yeah, if you're fermenting sugar water, you're not making beer, since you're starting with simple sugars.

Malting grains is one way of breaking the starches down into simple sugars. Artificial enzymes have been mentioned, but sake also fits very neatly here, where the koji mold produces the needed enzymes at the same time as the yeast is fermenting the resulting sugars.
 
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