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Grain & hop additions to basic 1.7 Kg extract kits

Discussion in 'General Brewing Techniques' started by peterlonz, 14/9/18.

 

  1. peterlonz

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    Posted 14/9/18
    I have been gradually improving what had been rather average beer, by making some additions.
    I understand the principles (I think) but when I come to actually brew I end up with many questions.
    Some examples:
    Recent recipe for an Aussie Pale Ale called up a total of 100 g of 3 different hops, 40 g of which was to be added at as dry hops at the 3/4 day mark.
    I had purchased fresh hops in 50 g sealed packs.
    First question: the 30 min total; rolling boil ,for 10 minute interval additions of hops seemed to give a very bitter extraction. Is this somewhat normal?
    Second question: The hops gradually half filled my hop "sock". I continued to gently stir doing my best to keep the boil "gentle". I was fearful That moving the sock around might effectively squeeze out more than it should.
    And finally at end of boil I was unsure how much "rinsing" (is this sparging also) I should do. Seemed logical to rinse with hot tap water until what was left tasted only slightly of hops.
    Third question: Should I have dumped the hop sock into the wort ( I didn't do that despite the instructions to do that on all Morgans 12 g hop packs.
    Oh I nearly forgot - the recipe called for the boil to be 60 mins total (hops only for 30 mins) & the extract from the grains was supposed to be in the boil. I don't like boiling malt extract or grain extract without a very good reason, so I did not do a boil after steeping & sparging the grain.
    Question: what purpose would boiling the sparged grain extract possibly serv?
    I am sure mostly these are dumb questions but some more guidance is clearly needed.
    Thanks
     
  2. altone

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    Posted 14/9/18
    Err you say at the end of boil you rinsed then you say you didn't??

    I think you need to revisit your recipe and tell us what you actually did.
    You using extract and specialty grain or all grain?

    If all grain - boil for 60 or whatever suggested minutes.
    If extract - similar as long as the recipe says so.
    The 30 minute hop addition is from the end of boiling so do that after 30mins
    the 20 minute same - so do after 40 mins etc etc.
    If you're doing this the hops should be fine.
    Hops are bitter - maybe a little too much for you at this stage?
    First question I think is covered above.
    Second question - keep that boil a bit more than gentle and stir/wiggle that hopsock around to extract as much as you can.
    Sparging is probably best done around 75C - too hot and you'll get an astringent/bitter taste - but is done BEFORE the boil
    Third question - Nope the hops have done their job.

    Find and follow a recipe to the tee and have a search here - you'll soon get the hang of it.

    Get yourself some brewing software like Beersmith (free trial period) or one of the free ones.

    Check out some brewing videos to see the process.

    Anyway hope I've helped a bit.

    Cheers


    edit: sorry I now see you are doing kit's and bits but yes boil the kit etc. as above
     
  3. DU99

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    Posted 14/9/18
  4. altone

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    Posted 14/9/18
    Wow that thing looks like it works in OpenOffice
    Never looked at it before because it's an Excel spreadsheet
     
  5. Bonenose

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    Posted 14/9/18
    Lot of involved here if you want to get right into it, but some basics (happy to be corrected on anything here):

    In short boiling gets rid of various undesirable elements and sterilises the wort it is a good thing.

    Sparging is rinsing your grain after mashing, as above 75 degrees is hot enough to extract extra sugars from the grain but cool enough to avoid extracting tannins etc.

    Boiling hops will extract bitterness how much depends on the type and amount of hops used and time they are boiled for. Basically hops added early in the boil are used for bitterness hops added near the end of the boil for taste and aroma. By using some of the brewing software you can calculate bitterness then after doing a few brews get and idea of what you enjoy and adjust hops to suit.

    I would not rinse the hop sock or add to the fermenter. Depending on you set up for boiling and transfer to fermenter you can possibly lose the hop sock. Also as above don't be scared to get into the hop sock get as much out of your hops as you can.

    Cheers
     
  6. Richard williamson

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    Posted 15/9/18
    I'm new to this so might be a bit thick here, when you say boil the extract is this out the tin as mine just says to add boiling water and cold water. If it can be boiled to add hops this would be a great next step for me as I want to end up doing grains.
     
  7. Bonenose

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    Posted 16/9/18
    Not sure on the tin stuff but you boil extract from grain and then add your hops at various times during the boil to give bitterness or flavour etc. Could probably boil a few litres of water with some extract for hop additions or add hops straight to the boiling water you use.
     
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  8. YAPN

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    Posted 16/9/18
    If I'm reading you correctly you are making kit and kilo brews. And you have started adding extra hops and grains.

    I would not boil hops to add to a kit. Kits are pre-hopped for your convenience and your brew should only need some dry-hopping (in your fermenter, after the krausen has dropped away).

    How much grain did you steep? Usually for kit and kilo brews the steeped grain liquid should be brought to the boil to kill off any infections.

    Once you get a hang of the terminology things will get a lot clearer.
     
  9. YAPN

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    Posted 16/9/18
    Kits should not need any boiling. Just add the boiling water and cold water like you are doing.
    Any addition of boiled hops is going to add bitterness, I dry-hop only.
    Tins of LME (Liquid Malt Extract) can be boiled if you are making an all-extract brew. Well, not the tins themselves but the stuff inside.
    Try steeping grains if you are looking to take the next step.
    I'm still a kit and kilo brewer. My basic recipe is...

    Coopers Real Ale Kit
    1xTin of LME
    Steeping Grains
    40g Hops
    Yeast

    Variations in grain types/quantities, hops and yeasts have kept me busy/amused for 15 years.
     
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  10. pnorkle

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    Posted 16/9/18
    This is directed to the OP - as he seems to need a few pointers (I don't want to sound like I'm telling everyone how to suck eggs.. apologies if I do..)

    There seems to be a bit of confusion between "Kits" & "Extract" with new brewers. Kits (such as Coopers Pale Ale) are already hopped and don't need boiling, nor to they need extra boiled hops - you will likely end up with a very bitter beer. Kits are generally 1.7Kg, also come with supplied yeast, and is what I suspect the OP is talking about (given his reference in the thread title to "1.7Kg."
    Unhopped Extract that Coopers also does, along with Briess and others, generally comes in 1.5Kg cans & does need boiling, adding hops at various stages etc.

    When it comes to using grain to pimp out a kit, you would generally use specialty grains, ie Crystal malt, and steep them in hot water - you should never boil the grain. After steeping, you remove the grain from the resultant liquid, and then boil the liquid to pasteurize it. If you want to add hops at this point you can, but again, in a pre-hopped kit, you will likely end up with a very bitter result. IMO, keep the hops for the end of the boil & dry hopping to add flavour & aroma.

    HTH.
     
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