Homegrown coriander

HomeBrewTalk.com - Beer, Wine, Mead, & Cider Brewing Discussion Community.

Help Support Homebrew Talk:

Clonefarmer

Well-Known Member
Joined
May 10, 2008
Messages
1,329
Reaction score
8
Location
Springfield, MA
I transplanted some cilantro/coriander plants I got from the local nursery. Assuming it goes to seed should I try and harvest the coriander seeds green or dry? Any tips on preparing them for use in brewing?

Witch other herbs, spices or plants used in beer can be homegrown?
 

GilaMinumBeer

Half-fast Prattlarian
Lifetime Supporter
Joined
Jan 23, 2008
Messages
65,427
Reaction score
10,767
HomeBrewers Garden is a great reference. I tried it myself with teh Coriander (we also make a lot of curry's) and I seem to recall that you cut it green (end of season as the "berries" begin to fall) and let it dry.

I gave up because it was a LOT of "berries" on a little plant and was a PITA (IMO) to separate.

Later, I read something about using a water bath to separate. IIRC, the good berries will sink and all the fluff wil float. But PLEASE do not take my word on this and look it up. There was a lot of good google info.
 

HBHoss

Chappell Brewery
Lifetime Supporter
Joined
Jul 3, 2008
Messages
8,221
Reaction score
127
Location
Mariposa, CA
According to the previous mentioned gardeners book, Coriander/Cilantro
"Harvesting: Pick the leaves before the flowers bloom in late spring. Gather the seeds after they have turned brown, but before seeds scatter.

It's a great book. If you are interested in growing your own, then I highly recommend it. It goes into just about everything a brewer would grow to brew beer with.

EDIT: If this is the only thing you are interested then here's the rest of the answer to your question. "Use from one sprig to one ounce of fresh leaves or 1/4 to 2 ounces of seeds at the beginning of the boil for flavoring."
 

Don_Coyote

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 28, 2010
Messages
46
Reaction score
4
Location
Great Lakes
I don't know if ressurections are frowned upon here, but i'm growing my own and using HBG as a reference. I'm wondering if anyone would know whether the seeds need to turn brown for chemical development in the oils useful for flavoring, or if it is only to make havesting easier as they fall off the plant? It is growing like a weed around my house and i would like to throw some in by batches as soon as possible. I picked a green seed today and it smelled very pungent when crushed, so i might use those instead of the older ones sitting on the shelf.

Also, The Homebrewer's Garden says to put the coriander in at the beginning of the boil, but many recipes i've seen call for it to be a late addition. Anyone noticed a difference in taste or utilization levels?
 

bottlebomber

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 15, 2011
Messages
14,303
Reaction score
2,753
Location
Ukiah
The easier way I've found is to let them go just brown on the plant, then shake them off into a bowl. Some will fall but the plants produce a ton.
 

Don_Coyote

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 28, 2010
Messages
46
Reaction score
4
Location
Great Lakes
I've got more growing than i'll bother harvesting, so i'm wondering if i can start using some without waiting for them to go brown...
 

bottlebomber

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 15, 2011
Messages
14,303
Reaction score
2,753
Location
Ukiah
Don_Coyote said:
I've got more growing than i'll bother harvesting, so i'm wondering if i can start using some without waiting for them to go brown...
I'm sure you could, but it may be hard to know how much to use. I imagine the aromatic content is a lot different when it's green and uncured.
 

Don_Coyote

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 28, 2010
Messages
46
Reaction score
4
Location
Great Lakes
I'm trying a Saison, so am willing to take a chance on different. I'd only be worried if they were more potent when green and overwhlemed the other flavors. Maybe i'll draw out a bit less than a gallon near the end of boil, add them seperately, and ferment it in a carboy....
 

LeSinge

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 22, 2011
Messages
53
Reaction score
6
Location
Milwaukee
well, the green seeds are more likely to have a strong flavor of cilantro along with the orange-like flavor of the coriander seed, making your witbier taste a little 'off'. If you pick them before they turn brown they may not be fully developed and you may have storage issues. While they are still quite young, green and soft, they can be pickled - kinda like capers. For the 'classic' flavor, let them turn brown, cut the seed-producing stalks, let them dry for a couple days, shake them off, roll them on a cloth to get the dirt and dried husks off and then use them or store them. Either way, fresh from your own garden will taste much more vibrant than from the store.
also: if you try to grow from the superior-tasting coriander seeds from India, be aware that your soil and growing conditions are different, and the result will be different, but still better that the 'domestic' seeds.
 
Top