Decoction Mashing In The Microwave

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munkey

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iv been trying to think of a way round burning the mash during Decoction mashing and just had a wave of thought, how about doing it in the microwave.

if i put it on a low setting?

gun me down if you may gents.

any advice on Decoction mashing would be appreciated.

thanks.

munkey.
 

Kai

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That sounds almost crazy enough to work.
 

kungy

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It could work. The only flaw that i can think of is that microwaves tend to cook (in my experience) in localised areas. If you think about food you cook in the microwaves even in the newer ones, the food tends to be hot and cold in places.

This is the only problem that i can see with doing a decoction in the microwave. Whilst you could probably do it, it would still not negate the need to stir it.

Will
 

Trough Lolly

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Munkey,
Give it a go - I've boiled yeast starters in my pyrex jug in the microwave, but I would keep a close eye on it - once it gets hot enough, you can get a boil to work on medium power. I would stir regularly to avoid localised scorching as suggested earlier.

Cheers,
TL
 

munkey

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thanks guys, will have to do an exsperiment seeing as i didnt get slaughtered for that mad idea.

good link to pressure cooking decot, seam to remember that from someware?, but bookmarked now.

thanks.

munkey
 

Borret

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My only concern with this is the raising to conversion temp in the microwave. The boiling bit seems fine but the initial heating of the decocted mash is undergoing a radiation hammering before conversion in order for it to get it to conversion temp. My concern is-What do microwaves do to the enzymes? I personally have no idea, but It would be a question to ask someone who might know if your experiment doesn't work. I say go for it. Let us know how you get on.

Borret
 

Trough Lolly

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Borret said:
[snip]My concern is-What do microwaves do to the enzymes? [snip]
[post="63941"][/post]​
Given that we're talking about a decoction, the microwaves will theoretically do no more damage to the enzymes than what the boil will do to them anyway?! :ph34r:

TL
 

deebee

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I have raised the temp of a mash by taking a jugful of grist out and whacking it in the micro. Put back and stir. Repeat. No obvious problems with the resulting wort.
 

kungy

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What about decoction mashing on the stovetop, whilst using a simmer mat. Apparently when you use a simmer mat you can melt choclate directly over the flame, rather than use a double boiler.

If it is supposedly good enough to do that, maybe it could work for your purpose.

To be doubly sure it didn't catch and burn i would use a simmer mat, and a good thick saucepan.

Will
 

Borret

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Trough Lolly said:
Borret said:
[snip]My concern is-What do microwaves do to the enzymes? [snip]
[post="63941"][/post]​
Given that we're talking about a decoction, the microwaves will theoretically do no more damage to the enzymes than what the boil will do to them anyway?! :ph34r:

TL
[post="63948"][/post]​
Yep I understand that. Boiling destroys them anyway. However my understanding of the decoction process (not having done one....yet ;) ) is that you remove your decoction and apply heat directly to it till it reaches conversion temp (the usual 64-68 deg range depending on the style) let this rest for a period so that it's starches convert and then raise to the boil. My point that I may not have described real well the first time is if you are 'nuking' the decocted portion to get it to the conversion temp then are you killing the enzymes, or reducing their dyistic power before they get to do their job on this portion. I have no problem with bringing it to boil in the microwave, it's the bit before that that I am questioning.

flame suit on

Cheers

Borret :blink:
 

neonmeate

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just for another perspective:
i routinely decoct for all my german style beers and i've never once burnt the mash (but i do have a nice heavy pot). just make sure you have a little bit of liquid in there and keep stirring and you'll be right.
 

Trough Lolly

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G'day Borret,
All decoctions that I do, are typically drawn from the mash at sacharification temps - so I have the conversion process will under way before I start small boils of the mash. I don't bother with stepped mashes since the rubbermaid is not direct fired and the grains I use don't need protein rests, etc. I see your point when you do have the mash at a protein rest temp and then want to use decoctions to step up through one or more rests. It would be interesting to test whether or not enzymes are zapped or just subjected to heat, within the microwave...

I'd still be happy to use the microwave - you probably won't be decocting the entire grain bill and you should have plenty of diastatic power in the grains in the mashtun to take care of an conversion issues caused by the microwave oven.

Here's a link to an excellent illustrated pilsner decoction session you might want to have a look at - it makes decoction look easy! ;)
All grain decoction primer
Cheers,
TL
 

Trough Lolly

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kungy said:
What about decoction mashing on the stovetop, whilst using a simmer mat. Apparently when you use a simmer mat you can melt choclate directly over the flame, rather than use a double boiler.

If it is supposedly good enough to do that, maybe it could work for your purpose.

To be doubly sure it didn't catch and burn i would use a simmer mat, and a good thick saucepan.

Will
[post="63959"][/post]​
Will,
I wouldn't rush out and buy a simmer mat just yet - if you want to decoct on the stovetop, then go for it - you won't need to have the burners on full blast to get the job done and as long as you keep a close eye on things and keep stirring, you'll be fine. I'd spend the money on a good quality saucepan instead. B)
Cheers,
TL
 

kungy

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I don't plan to do a decoction for a while. Anyway not a problem for a simmer mat, as I am still living off my parents and they have great cooking gear, thats what they tell me.

Will
 

munkey

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yeh i have done about 5 full mashes now and am getting settled into a routine, so this is why i was looking at deco,
doing a wheat beer tomorrow so gonna try th stove decot,

i was under the influance that the decot ruptures the cell wls inside the grins and also solubalises a lot of the starches and brakes down the protines, making the enzimes work easyer,
they apparently used this tech in poor quality grains,
and mixing wheat in with the barly will simulate this.

i was also thinking if this information was correct then would just decoting the wheat and oats make this process better, or would the wheat flavour need t be ballenced with the decoted barly.
 

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