Using fresh hops

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cbotrice

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A friend at work gave me about 6 oz of fresh hops, magnums, fuggles, cascades. Do I use them fresh or put them on a baking sheet with a rack and dry them down and then use them dried? MPW
 

2nd Street Brewery

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Since I only use pellets at the moment I'm no expert but I would have to say the fresher the better as with all ingredients. I have to guess that by drying them in the oven you are removing flavor and aroma. Even the pellets are moist, just massively compressed.
 

Baron von BeeGee

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I'm pretty sure they need to be dried; I was assuming most of the flavors came from oils? Probably a dehydrator or low oven would do the job well. All the leaf hops I've received were dried and absorbed quite a lot of wort during boiling.
 

Dude

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They definitely need to be dried before using them.

You can leave them out on a baking sheet for a few days or dry them in the oven, but keep the temp low (I'd say 140°-150° or less).
You'll know they are dry when they feel papery and the stems break off rather than bend.
 

Rhoobarb

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I guess you can use them fresh; I know that Two Brothers Brewing has a seasonal IPA where they claim to use fresh picked hops. However, most whole hops you buy are dried. If you're talking about a lot of hops, you might consider it. Their weight reduces and they are easier to store in ziplock bags in your fridge or freezer.

I'm thinking that drying them will actually intensify the aroma and/or flavor. Kind of like drying peppers or tomatoes.
 
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cbotrice

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I was thinking along the dried line myself, just wondered if there was another way. I will probably dry them by putting on baking sheets on top of racks and put them near the dehumidfier in the basement, they should be dry over nite. Boy do they smell great though, like some other really great recreational herb. MPW
 

PT Ray

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Why would you want to dry fresh hops other than maybe for extended storage? You don't find a chef going out of is way to find fresh herbs so he can dry them. Have you ever dried your own fresh herbs? They don't come out near as fragrant. I could be wrong but I would have to think the same principle would apply.

I just found this link on BYO
 

Dude

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PT Ray said:
Why would you want to dry fresh hops other than maybe for extended storage? You don't find a chef going out of is way to find fresh herbs so he can dry them. Have you ever dried your own fresh herbs? They don't come out near as fragrant. I could be wrong but I would have to think the same principle would apply.

I just found this link on BYO

Just cause some wizard says its okay, doesn't mean its okay. You don't know where that wizard has been.
 

PT Ray

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ORRELSE said:
Just cause some wizard says its okay, doesn't mean its okay. You don't know where that wizard has been.
Wizard or not, he still supported what I thought was just logical sense so I went back and added the link.
 
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cbotrice

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Well I did dry them as I wasn't ready to put a batch on just yet and didn't want to store them that long. The weight difference is huge out of about 6 oz I got about 2+ oz dried. Wish I had had a beer ready for dry hopping but alas not to be. MPW
 

Gilbey

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I have some hop vines in my garden. This year I harvested about a pound of mixed hops. I dried mine on the back deck on a screen tray so air can circulate. They should not contain that much moisture when you pick them. The leaves on the buds should be a touch dry and crinkly. I let mine sit one day out in the sun and then put them in a ziplock and into the freezer. It seems to work pretty well for me. A buddy does it pretty much the same way with good results.

Gilbey
 
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