- Thoroughly clean and sanitize all your equipment ( see details on following pages)
- Pour 2 to 3 gallons of clean water in a large pot ( at least a four gallon pot would be good) NOTES ON WATER: city water ok if NOT chlorinated, same for well water. Hard water is not a big deal. Can use bottled water.
- If your recipe called for grains, put them in a cloth bag, secure the end, and put in your pot
- Begin to heat the water- bring temperature up to approximately 155F and steep the grains for 20 to 30 minutes. Lift out grain bag and let drain, then discard grains.
- Heat brew pot to boiling then remove from heat and slowly add liquid and dry malt extracts while stirring ( if recipe calls for malto dextrin, rice syrup solids, or other sugars – add at this time also)
- Put brew pot back on heat source and bring wort to a boil. IMPORTANT: You must continuously stir until back to boil. NOTE: Be careful when it comes back to a boil, it can froth up very quickly, so watch closely and lift pot off heat momentarily until it settles down. At this point, adjust your heat source down to keep brew pot at a slow-rolling boil.
- Now add your bittering hops (Total boil time from this point will be 1 hour, although sometimes it will only be ½ hour- check recipe instructions)
- After 50 minutes add 1 tsp Irish moss if recipe calls for it. Also, if recipe calls for flavoring hops – add at this time
- The last 5 minutes of the boil add finishing hops ( also called aroma hops)
- After 60 minutes has passed, remove from heat and cool to 70 – 75 F as quickly as possible. A wort chiller is best – don’t forget to sanitize first, can be placed in brew pot last 2 minutes to accomplish this. Otherwise, place brew pot in tub of ice water with lid on. Stir occasionally with sanitized thermometer and check temperature.
- Pour wort into carboy or fermenting bucket and top off with 70 F water to bring the total volume up to 5 gallons
- Pitch the yeast (pour into fermenter) then put top on and add airlock ( see additional info on preparing yeast and yeast starters)
- If using carboy, sanitize your hand then cover top, lay carboy across your leg and rock vigorously. If using bucket, stir vigorously with sanitized spoon ( this will introduce oxygen into the liquid which will help get the yeast going- do not shake fermenter once fermentation has begun
- Place in room temperature area to keep at 68 – 72F
- Cover with blanket or sheet ( yeast will die if exposed to sunlight)
- Should begin fermenting in 24 hours and continue for 7 to 14 days
- When bubbling has ceased from the airlock, you may bottle your beer or choose to move to a secondary fermenter for another week ( this will improve the clarity of your beer)
- Set your primary fermenter up on table or counter top and let sit for at least 20 minutes to let sediment (trub) settle to the bottom
- Sanitize siphon tube, funnel, and secondary fermenter
- Place secondary fermenter on floor below primary fermenter and place siphon tube in primary.
- Rinse your mouth then carefully suck on end of tube to begin siphoning into secondary or get an auto siphon!
- When done, replace airlock and set in warm dark place as before
- Let sit for a week or longer and bottle at your convenience.
- Sanitize all equipment
- Heat up 2 to 4 cups of clean water in saucepan and add ¾ cup priming sugar
- Bring to boil, then slow boil for 2 minutes
- Pour into bottling bucket
- Siphon beer into bottling bucket
- Stir well to evenly distribute priming sugar
- Fill bottles 1 inch from top then cap
- Store in warm dark place for around 2 weeks to allow carbonation to take place ( time varies depending on type of beer – test a bottle to see )
- When carbonated enough, store in cool place such as frig or basement
LIQUID YEAST PREPARATION
- Liquid yeast should be stored in the refrigerator if not being used
- IMPORTANT NOTE ABOUT YEAST- THEY DO NOT LIKE SUDDEN TEMPERATURE CHANGES OR LIGHT!
- When planning on brewing, get vile or pack out and put in room temperature for several hours before the start of the brewing process. Can be placed in pocket while brewing.
- There is a big advantage in making a yeast starter for your brew. You will introduce a much larger population of yeast that will start your fermentation much faster, reducing your risk of contamination or off flavors. Yeast starters are a must for “big” beers ( high alcohol content).
- Heat up 3 cups of clean water in a saucepan and add ¼ cup of dry malt extract. Stir and bring to boil.
- Boil for 10 minutes then place saucepan in sink with cold water to cool liquid to 75F
- Poor liquid into sanitized glass container. Have yeast ready following prior instructions. Put yeast in jar
- Place tin foil over top and place in warm dark place for 1 day then it will be ready to pitch into your fermenter. Stir up liquid and sediment with sanitized spoon then add to beer.
- Yeast can be reused 1 to 2 times. Yeast will settle to the bottom of your primary fermenter with the trub. Once the beer has been siphoned out of the fermenter, you can gently swirl the fermenter to mix things and then fill a sanitized glass container or bottle half full. It’s not a bad idea to swab the top of the carboy before pouring so you don’t risk contaminating your yeast.
- Use a small plug and an airlock on bottle and place in frig.
- When planning on brewing, get out bottle and place in warm dark place a day ahead of time ( 2 days if doing a yeast starter – 1 day to warm up, then 1 day for the starter)
- SANITATION IS KEY TO CONSISTANTLY MAKING GREAT BEER!!!!!!!!
Clean all equipment and containers that will be in contact with the beer. Use One Step, Straight A, or Easy clean for this purpose. This is the step that removes any residues or deposits.
- Next, sterilize everything with an Iodophor or Star San. This step ensures there are no microorganisms to contaminate your beer.
- Note: Do not introduce anything into the wort once you begin to cool it down- this is an easy time to contaminate your beer.
- Once fermentation has begun don’t remove airlock unless necessary. If fermenting in a bucket – don’t remove top to peak in. This is when air born yeast or bacteria can get in and contaminate your beer.
- If brand new, place in dishwasher upside down and run through wash cycle- no detergent, use 1 Tbs one-step instead- set to sanitize mode and run through wash cycle—you’re all set!!
- If bottle had beer in already- clean with hot water and bottle brush 2 or 3 times ( best time to do this is right after you drink your beer – its much easier to clean!!) Use a touch of chlorox if you see any residue in bottle
- Store bottles till ready to use then repeat step 1