One thing you could be missing out on during the lockdown is your favourite beer, and more and more Aussie guys are turning to the home brew sector, which is growing in popularity. Brewing your own beer doesn’t only result in a tasty product; there’s a great deal of satisfaction in brewing your own beer, and once you get the hang of it, there’s no need to go out at all.
Understanding the Brewing Process
While the obvious goal is to drink tasty cold beer, you really do need to understand the brewing process, plus the ingredients used, which are as follows:
- Water – Makes up over 90% of the beer.
- Barley – This is where the fermenting sugars come from.
- Hops – Essential taste bitterness
- Yeast – This converts the sugars into alcohol and CO2.
It is vital that your beermaking ingredients are of the best quality, which you can order from the online supplier, who stocks everything from barley to kegerator parts and everything in between.
- Convert the malted barley into sugars – Known as ‘the mash’, this would be made in small bath, hot water soaking the barley, while experienced brewers would ‘sparge’, which means rinsing the grain to extract more sugar.
- Bringing to the boil – Once the grain is removed, the liquid is then boiled; add the hops and let it boil for an hour and when you turn off the heat, you are left with a solution called ‘wort’. Some brewers constantly add the hops during the brewing, so it really is a question of trial and error.
- Cool the wort – The solution is then cooled to what is known as ‘pitch temperature’, when the temperature is at 20C (68F), you add the yeast. The quicker you do this, the less chance there is of contamination, so immersing the bagged solution in ice water is advised.
- Adding the Yeast – This is a critical step, which is called ‘pitching the yeast, and then the beer is sealed into a container and left in a dry, dark and cool spot to ferment. It is critical that the container is airlocked (you can buy all the equipment online), so do make you’re the container is airtight.
The final stage is the bottling, which happens 2 weeks after the yeast was added, while adding a little sugar before bottling to ensure there’s plenty of bubbles.
The Internet is a valuable resource where you can learn what you need to know and with online suppliers of all-things beer brewing related, you won’t even have to leave your home.