Kitchen Adventures

Preparing to Brew a Batch of Beer

Brewing beer is one of my favorite hobbies as the process itself is a simple as cooking any easy dish but the chemistry, biology, thermodynamics and microbiology allow the brewer to geek out if he or she chooses. If simplicity is desired, a good product can be made without any consideration to those science-based fields.

There are 4 main actions that can be completed the day before brewing to help speed up the process.

  1. Clean equipment
  2. Gather and treat water. If your water supply has chlorine you can allow it to sit uncovered overnight so it evaporates out. If it contains chloramines, it needs treated with something like Camden Tablets. Failing to remove either of these chemicals will cause the yeast to create phenols that taste rubbery or distinctly like bandaids.
  3. Measure out grains and hops
  4. Crush the grain.

Steps 3 and 4 can be completed by any homebrew shop or mail order store. I buy all my ingredients in bulk as I own a barley crusher.

Steps 1 and 2 are pretty self-explanatory so here are pics of the rest!

Measuring the grain:

IMG_20150408_135405

 

And crushing it:

IMG_20150408_135631 IMG_20150408_135720

You don’t want to make flour when crushing the grains. Cracking the husk and exposing the endosperm is the objective. The pictured crush is absolutely perfect by my standards!

A good crush also preserves the hull to act as filter and a conditioning agent in the mash. Basically its keeps the barley mash from caking solidly which would cause a huge issue when trying to drain and rinse the mash.

I brewed a batch yesterday but got lazy on pictures. I can continue explaining the process if there is any interest.

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