From the HBD Archive
From: arf@ddsw1.mcs.com (Jack Schmidling)
Subject: EASYMASH
Date: 1992-03-27 13:27:00 GMT


To: Homebrew Digest
Fm: Jack Schmidling


I am being inundted with requests for EASYMASH and am reposting it in the
interest of saving bandwidth.



EASY MASH 4

(Another Sequel)


This was originally posted leaving out a lot of details,
some of which were filled in by the Sequel. This edition
further simplifies the process and leaves out unnecessary
steps.
........................

As I intend to produce a new video on all grain brewing, I
would appreciate any and all CONSTRUCTIVE comments.

My intent was to develop an all grain process that reduces
the cost and effort to the minimum while producing a high
quality beer.

As I have the same aversion to plastic as I do to aluminum
and to keep within the budget of most hobbiests, I decided
to base the system around the old enameled 8 gal kettle that
grandma used for canning.

The same kettle is used for mashing, sparging and again
after dumping the spent grains, for the boil. It is never
lifted full so the problem of handles falling off is not an
issue.

A few simple mods are required to make it fit the process.
A small brass spiggot is fitted to the bottom with a short
piece of pipe extending several inches toward the center on
the inside.

A small piece of window screen is rolled several times
around the pipe and secured with a hose clamp or twisted
copper wire. The screen roll extends several inches past
the end of the pipe and the last inch is bent over itself to
prevent anything from entering the spiggot that has not
passed through several layers of screen. This simple
expedient eliminates the need for the traditionl "false
bottom" with a zillion holes and seems to prove that simple
is frequently better.

Mashing is begun by "doughing in" 3 gals of hot tap water to
8 lbs of milled (2 row/6 row) malt. When thoroughly mixed,
apply heat to the kettle and bring the temperature up to
155F. Stir regularly to prevent scorching and to distribute
the heat. When the "strike" temp is reached, reduce the
heat and stir occassionally and maintian 155F for 60 min.

After 60 mins at 155, crank up the heat and continue
stirring until 175 degrees is reached. Hold this temp for
15 mins, then turn off the heat and let it rest while
heating water on another burner. If you have control over
the hot water heater, you can get it almost hot enough out
of the tap.

The level of wort in the kettle should be about an inch
above the grain when it settles. Lay a small bowl on top
of the grain to distribute the sparging water and minimize
the disturbance of the grain. The edge of the bowl must be
kept below the water level.

Open the spiggot just a trickle and run the wort into a cup
or jug till it runs clear. This typically takes less than
one cup. Pour the turbid runoff back into the kettle
(bowl).

The object of sparging is to extract as much sugar from the
grain as possible. The longer it takes, the more efficient
the extraction. Adjust the outflow so that it takes about
20 min to obtain one gallon. Add the boiling water as
necessary whenever the level drops near the rim of the bowl.

The first runoff should be about 1.080 and you quit when it
gets below 1.010. The total blend will produce 6 to 7
gallons at about 1.030 which, after boiling will yield 5 to
6 gals at 1.040.

The seven gallons of wort will just fit into the kettle for
the boil but it is best to start with about five and add the
rest as evaporation makes more room avaiable. A minimal one
hour boil will evaporate about a gallon so you can play with
the volumes in various ways. You can increase the gravity
by more boiling or boil less and have more beer.

Add half of your hops as soon as boiling begins. Save one
forth for the end and the remainder at regular intervals
during the boil.

After the boil, it is tapped into the primary after cooling,
either overnight or with a wort chiller if you have one. I
actually draw it off a gallon at a time so that I can shake
it vigorously and "glug " it into the primary to oxygenate
it prior to pitching yeast.

The rest of the process is just like extract beer. The only
difference is that it will take longer for the beer to
clear.

The kettle seems to be universally available for about $35
and the rest of the stuff can be had for less than $5,
making it a pretty inexpensive system.

For those afraid to try all grain, I can simply say that
(for me), the quality of my beer has made a quantum leap
forward and it was like falling off a log.

I do not doubt that some people can make good beer with
extracts but I can now honestly say, I don't think I ever
did. All grain brewing takes a bit more time and effort but
the satisfaction is immence and dollar-a-gallon beer is also
no small part of the compensation.


js


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