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Spice, Herb, or Vegetable Beer Wild Pecan Porter

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mdbrewer1

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My wife picked up some pecans and maple syrup at Costco for me today and I'll be trying a maple pecan version of this in a couple weeks. Reading through a couple other recipes that have maple syrup, it looks like it generally gets added in the last 10 minutes of the boil (or thereabouts). Right now, I'm going to go with maybe 6 or 8 oz. of maple syrup. I don't want to overwhelm the pecan flavor.

Anyone have any thoughts on that proposed plan of attack?
 
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I've never used syrup in a beer, but I would think it would be similar to honey and should boost the abv. No clue as to how much to use though. Good luck and report back on the final results!
 

mdbrewer1

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Thanks. I'm looking forward to it. I'll definitely report back, but it will be a little while.

Reading a little further, I think I'm going to add it at flameout and maybe up the amount a little. I don't really want to boost the ABV all that much though. Is there any way to combat that?

I've also ready about priming with maple syrup, but I don't want to overdo it. If it is too light on the flavor, I'll stick have the tasty base recipe to drink and be "forced" to try it again! :mug:
 

ncfield

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WildGinger: Do you happen to have a extract version of this recipe? Sounds amazing! I just started brewing two months ago and have only made extract w/speciality grains and ciders. Figured I'd ask :)
 
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WildGinger: Do you happen to have a extract version of this recipe? Sounds amazing! I just started brewing two months ago and have only made extract w/speciality grains and ciders. Figured I'd ask :)
I do not have an extract recipe sorry. Maybe someone can convert everything for you. Since you do extract and steep specialty grains, it would probably not be too difficult to convert.
 

mdbrewer1

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WildGinger: Do you happen to have a extract version of this recipe? Sounds amazing! I just started brewing two months ago and have only made extract w/speciality grains and ciders. Figured I'd ask :)
The flaked barley needs to be mashed. Never fear though. If you can do steeping grains, you can do a PM. It's just steeping in a set amount of water at a set temperature for a set amount of time, along with some base grain (2-row and Marris Otter for this brew). I'm going to be doing a PM in my 5 gallon pot. Here is my planned recipe for a 5 gallon batch.

Mash ingredients:
2 lb. 2-row
1.5 lb. pecans
.75 lb flaked barley
.75 lb Marris Otter
.5 lb roast barley
.5 lb C60
.5 lb C120
.25 lb choc malt
.25 lb carapils

Mash all of this in 2 gallons of water (5.5 lbs of grains * 1.5 qt. water/lb. of grain = 8.25 qts or ~2 gallons) at 153 for 60 minutes. I'll get my strike water up to 164 and stir my grains in my 5 gallon paint strainer bag and then wrap the kettle up with a hunting jacket and moving blanket.

For the boil, add ~ 1.5 gallons of water (I'm going to be doing a mini pour-over sparge of 170 degree water) to get to 3.5 gallons in the pot (highest I usually go for boil volume).

Boil additions:
.25 oz. Northern Brewer at 45 min.
1 oz. Northern Brewer at 15 min.
1 tsp. Irish Moss at 15 min.
.75 oz. Cascade at 5 min.
2 lb. Light DME at 0 min.

Top off to 5 gallons.

Aerate and pitch WLP023 starter at 63F.

I want to make mine a maple pecan porter like the Sam Adams version, so I'm going to add 1 lb. of Grade B maple syrup at high krausen (~2 days into fermentation).

Ferment in swamp cooler at 63 for about 7 days. Bring up to ~70 for another 2 weeks. Bottle at 2.2 vol. CO2.

That might sound a little daunting, but I'd be happy to answer any questions you might have.
 

wapitiscat

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Just read the Brew & A with Jason and then saw this thread got a tickle so I figured I'd post some questions. Is it possible to crush the pecans too fine? I was thinking of using a food processor to crush the nuts. With the rolling pin method, what's a good target size for the nut pieces? Should they be about the same as the crushed grains?

Love Porters, love pecans .... what could possibly go wrong?

Todd
 
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The flaked barley needs to be mashed. Never fear though. If you can do steeping grains, you can do a PM. It's just steeping in a set amount of water at a set temperature for a set amount of time, along with some base grain (2-row and Marris Otter for this brew). I'm going to be doing a PM in my 5 gallon pot. Here is my planned recipe for a 5 gallon batch.

Mash ingredients:
2 lb. 2-row
1.5 lb. pecans
.75 lb flaked barley
.75 lb Marris Otter
.5 lb roast barley
.5 lb C60
.5 lb C120
.25 lb choc malt
.25 lb carapils

Mash all of this in 2 gallons of water (5.5 lbs of grains * 1.5 qt. water/lb. of grain = 8.25 qts or ~2 gallons) at 153 for 60 minutes. I'll get my strike water up to 164 and stir my grains in my 5 gallon paint strainer bag and then wrap the kettle up with a hunting jacket and moving blanket.

For the boil, add ~ 1.5 gallons of water (I'm going to be doing a mini pour-over sparge of 170 degree water) to get to 3.5 gallons in the pot (highest I usually go for boil volume).

Boil additions:
.25 oz. Northern Brewer at 45 min.
1 oz. Northern Brewer at 15 min.
1 tsp. Irish Moss at 15 min.
.75 oz. Cascade at 5 min.
2 lb. Light DME at 0 min.

Top off to 5 gallons.

Aerate and pitch WLP023 starter at 63F.

I want to make mine a maple pecan porter like the Sam Adams version, so I'm going to add 1 lb. of Grade B maple syrup at high krausen (~2 days into fermentation).

Ferment in swamp cooler at 63 for about 7 days. Bring up to ~70 for another 2 weeks. Bottle at 2.2 vol. CO2.

That might sound a little daunting, but I'd be happy to answer any questions you might have.
This looks good. Let me know how it turns out.

Just read the Brew & A with Jason and then saw this thread got a tickle so I figured I'd post some questions. Is it possible to crush the pecans too fine? I was thinking of using a food processor to crush the nuts. With the rolling pin method, what's a good target size for the nut pieces? Should they be about the same as the crushed grains?

Love Porters, love pecans .... what could possibly go wrong?

Todd
Woo hoo! I have thought about using a food processor on the pecans, but I'm not sure how you would remove the oils if you crushed them up so fine. With the rolling pin, I crush them as small as I can get them, with them still being "pieces". Big enough that there is still some surface area from which to absorb oils. I know that doesn't tell you much, but to me it was just trial and error till I found a size I liked. Good luck with it.
 

wapitiscat

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Maybe find someone with an oil press?

I may try food processing some then lay them on paper towels and heat in the oven. Sounds like just knocking the oil down even a little may be enough. I've got a couple off color head retention comments that I'll keep to myself. Probably NSFF (Not Suitable for Forum).

Todd
 

diodeart

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Kegging this tonight. Will report back with results. It was a little work doing the oil removal, but smelled fantastic.
I wanted to rub the paper towels all over my body.
 
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Maybe find someone with an oil press?

I may try food processing some then lay them on paper towels and heat in the oven. Sounds like just knocking the oil down even a little may be enough. I've got a couple off color head retention comments that I'll keep to myself. Probably NSFF (Not Suitable for Forum).

Todd
Kegging this tonight. Will report back with results. It was a little work doing the oil removal, but smelled fantastic.
I wanted to rub the paper towels all over my body.
:mug: :mug:
 

mdbrewer1

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Life got in the way of my earlier plans, but I've got my 5 gallons in the fermenter. My starter took off a little slow so I'm going to pitch it in the morning.
 

mdbrewer1

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This was only the second time I made a starter, and since I wasn't sure about the yeast since it was a little darker than any others I've used, I ended up letting it ferment all the way. It left behind a nice white layer of good looking yeast, so I cold crashed last night, decanted, and pitched in my 1.047 wort. It had been two full days since I'd brewed, but the wort looked fine when I pitched and I didn't notice any off flavors in the hydro sample. I checked this morning and there is activity in the airlock after just 8 hours.

The plan is to pitch the grade B maple syrup at high krausen as suggested by another poster. I think I'll try 10 oz. and see what kind of flavor that gets me. I don't want it to overpower the pecan flavor.
 

mdbrewer1

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I did my standard airlock sniffing earlier and the smell is fruitier than most of the brews I've sniffed in the past. Can I attribute that to the WLP023 yeast? I've used WLP004, Notty, S-04, and S-05 in the past, and this one strikes me as different.
 

mdbrewer1

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Well, the yeasties are really going at it this morning. Constant bubbling while sitting in a 62 degree water bath. With the higher temperature inside the bucket, that should put it right at the low end of the suggested range. I'll bring it upstairs after about a week to warm up to about 70 for 2 weeks.

I looked back and my OG was less than the OP, but the syrup will bump the total sugar up, so I'm guessing it will be fairly close by the end.

I'm so excited about this one. I can't help posting about it.
 

mdbrewer1

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I added 12 oz. (by weight) of Grade B maple syrup last night at almost exactly 48 hours since pitching the starter. The bubbling had started to slow and I figured it was close to high krausen.

Turns out that yeast REEEALLLYYY like Grabe B maple syrup. We're talking Buddy the Elf kind of like. When I came down at 7, the airlock was completely plugged, some liquid had escaped at the grommet/airlock connection, and the lid was bulging like nobody's business. I yanked the airlock out with surprisingly minor leakage and put a new one in. That one started clogging in less than a minute. I ended up removing the lid and just resting it on the bucket, and putting a piece of sanitized foil on the grommet hole. The entire headspace was filled with something that looked exactly like the foam you get when you pour the root beer into a root beer float.

I'll try sealing it back up this afternoon and see how it goes. This was a first for me. My wife got pretty freaked out about it.
 

mdbrewer1

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Soooo, it's been about 2 weeks since I pitched the starter and I'm still getting airlock activity every couple minutes. It sat in the basement for a week at 62 and it has been sitting in my office for the past week. We have a programmable thermostat that goes from 69 during the day to 66 at night. I have the bucket wrapped in a blanket in an upstairs closet to try to prevent temperature swings, but it likely varies a bit over the course of a day.

I was wondering if anyone experienced anything similar with this yeast strain. Would the temperature swings cause it to offgas? Would an infection cause it to keep bubbling like this? The plan is to bottle next weekend so I'll take my first hydro reading today or tomorrow, and I realize those numbers should help provide some answers, but I also wanted to see what others thought. I'm always trying to learn so I can be more dangerous going forward. Thanks!!
 

mdbrewer1

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I took my first hydro reading tonight. Came in at 1.011. It was a bit thin, with a good porter flavor, and a hint of pecan at the finish. I see in other posts that it comes through even more with aging. Hopefully it does the same for me since I'd like it a bit more pronounced. I'll let it sit for a while before breaking into them.

The big downer though was that there was no maple flavor at all. I don't know if I added it too soon or maybe just didn't add enough. I don't know if the maple flavor will show up more as it ages or carbonates, but even if it doesn't it's still a tasty brew. If the gravity is the same on Sunday I'll be bottling then. I'll report back if the maple flavor starts to show up at some point, but I'm not holding my breath.

My Flapjack Porter name will have to wait.
 

mdbrewer1

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Thanks. I did a little more reading and it sounds like the maple taste comes out a little better as it ages, but I might have undershot the amount I needed by a fair bit. I wanted to err on the low side since a little/no maple flavor is better than having it overwhelm the base beer. We'll have to wait and see.

I have some commercial beer leftover from the holidays and my stout to hopefully help get me through the next couple months.
 

geoffey

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Has anyone gotten banana notes from this beer? I have a noticeable banana aroma, and it's there in the taste as well but a little muted. I brewed this recipe without any subsitutions, the only thing different being that I fermented at 68 instead of 63.
 
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Has anyone gotten banana notes from this beer? I have a noticeable banana aroma, and it's there in the taste as well but a little muted. I brewed this recipe without any subsitutions, the only thing different being that I fermented at 68 instead of 63.

Banana Nut Porter????? Ha i've never gotten a banana flavor. Wierd. How is it?
 

geoffey

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It's too sweet I think. Maybe I just need to consider it a desert beer or something. I guess I didn't get enough attenuation and that's contributing to the perceived banana flavor as well.
 

geoffey

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OG 1.059
FG 1.015

I kegged this batch, although I had been planning on bottling. Just ran out of time. I cold crashed and kegged a few days ago. Didn't notice the banana taste or aroma prior to that now that I think about it.
 
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Looks like your numbers were on target. Maybe some mind of bacteria or infection in the keg? Or maybe the beer was oxygenated during transfer?
 

geoffey

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Those are both possibilities. Seems rather soon for a bacterial infection to manifest itself though. I think I did a decent job of avoiding oxygen during fermentation and transfer to keg. I mean, I flushed the keg with c02 and didn't open the conical during fermentation. But you never know. I'll see if the off-flavor sticks around.
 

Franky

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Going to have to give this one a try seeing how I have access to free pecans. Grandfather owns a pecan cracking service.

I'll have to brew small batches of this with the different varietes that he gets. See which ones taste better or give off a more pecan flavor.

Saddly do to living/life situation that will have to wait for early summer.

If you're interested I'll report back once I finally get around to being able to brew again. That day can not come soon enough!
 

mdbrewer1

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I ended up with 47 12 oz and 3 16 oz bottles. I primed with maple syrup and I could taste a hint of it on the finish. Hopefully it hangs around after carbonation.
 

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Very new brewer with a question.....

What is the best way to scale down a recipe? I'd like to try a batch at 3 gallons finished. I realize this recipe is a bit complicated but the question would apply to any recipe.

Thanks
 
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I think the best way to scale down is by using percentages. Regardless of the total lbs of each ingredient, the percentage of use should always be the same. If you are using a brewing program, i.e. Brewtarget, Beersmith, etc... you could enter the recipe in as a full batch, and then scale it down by the percentages. In this case though, since the original recipe is for a 6.5 gal batch, I would just cut everything in half for a 3.25 gal batch. It won't be perfect, but it would be close.
 

mdbrewer1

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I popped my first one of these last night and it tastes great already. No noticeable maple flavor unfortunately, but a strong nutty/pecan presence in both aroma and finish. Nothing overpowering; it was pretty much exactly what I was looking for on the pecan aspect. I don't know if the maple will come through later, but if it doesn't, I'll make another batch next fall and split the batch. Part of it will get a higher syrup amount after high krausen and some of it will get varying amounts of maple extract at bottling.

After looking at the ingredients in pretty much all of the pure and natural extracts I could find, it looks like they are mainly alcohol mixed with pure maple syrup, which seems to me to be the same thing as priming with maple syrup like I did. Perhaps the concentration is high enough that the flavor would be more likely to come through? I'd prefer not to go the route of artificial flavorings, so I guess I'll have to experiment with the extract. I'm planning on picking up some 1 gallon glass jugs, so I'll try different concentrations and see how they taste after carbing up and then go full scale if I come up with a winner.

Thanks for the great recipe.
 

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After my chocolate coffee oatmeal stout was a hit for New Years Eve, got a request for a chocolate pecan porter. Thinking of throwing in some extra 120L Crystal to a base porter recipe and making a turtle beer...

Thanks for the pecan tips! Greatly appreciated. By the way, my local Wegmans (southeastern PA) has 10 oz bags of shelled pecans for $6 - $7...

Cheers....
 

mdbrewer1

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I've had a couple more of these since my last update and the nutty pecan flavor has gone away almost completely. I know things change over time, but I was expecting it to get stronger, if anything. Without knowing a better way to put it, the flavors almost seem muddled now. I don't know if it is mental, but I can taste the maple flavor just a bit. Perhaps they're fighting each other and both are getting lost.

They've only been bottled for a month and a half at this point, and I know there's nothing else to do other than wait. Just thought I'd share in case anyone else runs into a similar situation. I've been having about one a week so far. I'll keep updating as it ages a bit more.
 
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