Mini mash question

Mini mash question

Post by Eyke » Fri, 10 Oct 2003 10:01:05



Hello all:

Well fall has finally came to Southcentral PA..well...this summer fall
was never that far away. :^) Anyway, it's time to do some brewing.

I've been doing mini-mashing as of late. What I have done in the past
was use a muslin bag to hold the grains then pour water from a Pyrex
measure to sparge. What I'm planning this time is to dump the grains
in the pot along with the required amount of water. Also instead of
having the pot on the burner, I'm going to set the oven to 160 and
mash in the oven.

 I bought a sparging arm from Listerman's (Hi Dan! :^), which now I'm
not sure how I'm going to use it. My plan was to do the mash, then
place a paint screen in the low strainer that came with my propane
burner and dump the grains in the strainer to sparge. I can probably
put the sparge arm on the strainer. Provided the strainer has a large
enough ID and is deep enough (I have a deeper strainer that came with
a 30 qt pot if this won't work). The arm is for 5 gal buckets.

Question is, what is the best way to mash, in a bag or directly in the
water.

TIA,
--
Eyke
Remove HORMEL

 
 
 

Mini mash question

Post by Ed Edelenbo » Fri, 10 Oct 2003 12:22:28


I'm sure you'll get other responses...  I started doing mini-mashes last
winter/spring.  Some of this is empirical, some conjecture from reading
up.  From everything I've read, you are better off without the bag.  You
can see the mash first and foremost so you know it is well mixed and
there are no doughballs and such.  The grain is in better contact with
all of the water and part of the mash is the right proportions of water
to grain.

What has worked well for me was to calc. the mash water needed and the
strike temp.  Then, in a pot, heat the water to the strike temp and stir
in the grains.  I've never had to add cool water to lower or hot water
raise the temp but it may be necessary.   Cover and put in the oven at
160F for the mash time.  Then the whole thing gets dumped into a stainer
and sparged with 180F water.  My sparge technique is crude...  ladling
water onto the grain.  I have hit between 65 and 75% efficiency this way
which is plenty good for me.  I'm sure I end up with extra crud, I don't
vorlauf but the beer clears in the secondary and tastes just fine.

I'm about to try a 2.5 gal. all grain batch and plan to improve a few of
the steps (a cover (al. foil w/holes punched) to distribute the sparge
water better, vorlauf, etc.)

Ed

Quote:

> Hello all:

> Well fall has finally came to Southcentral PA..well...this summer fall
> was never that far away. :^) Anyway, it's time to do some brewing.

> I've been doing mini-mashing as of late. What I have done in the past
> was use a muslin bag to hold the grains then pour water from a Pyrex
> measure to sparge. What I'm planning this time is to dump the grains
> in the pot along with the required amount of water. Also instead of
> having the pot on the burner, I'm going to set the oven to 160 and
> mash in the oven.

>  I bought a sparging arm from Listerman's (Hi Dan! :^), which now I'm
> not sure how I'm going to use it. My plan was to do the mash, then
> place a paint screen in the low strainer that came with my propane
> burner and dump the grains in the strainer to sparge. I can probably
> put the sparge arm on the strainer. Provided the strainer has a large
> enough ID and is deep enough (I have a deeper strainer that came with
> a 30 qt pot if this won't work). The arm is for 5 gal buckets.

> Question is, what is the best way to mash, in a bag or directly in the
> water.

> TIA,
> --
> Eyke
> Remove HORMEL

--
      The spam finally got to me.
To email me, change "spam" to "speak"

 
 
 

Mini mash question

Post by Mark » Fri, 10 Oct 2003 22:55:45



Quote:
> Hello all:

> I've been doing mini-mashing as of late. What I have done in the past
> was use a muslin bag to hold the grains then pour water from a Pyrex
> measure to sparge. What I'm planning this time is to dump the grains
> in the pot along with the required amount of water. Also instead of
> having the pot on the burner, I'm going to set the oven to 160 and
> mash in the oven.

> Question is, what is the best way to mash, in a bag or directly in the
> water.

In the bag is easier but I recommend and mash with out the bag.

For the sparge I use a nylon mesh bag and a one gallon bucket. I cut the
bottom out of the bucket, put the bag in the bucket and stretch it over the
top, put a cake cooling rack over my brew pot and set the bucket on top. I
then pour my mash into the bucket and bag and let the wort drain into my
pot. Then I rinse (it runs a little fast to be a real sparge) with several
gallons of 175 deg water. The bucket will hold a little more than 3 1/2
pounds of grain and I get between 65 and 70% efficiency. Your strainer would
probably work in a similar fashion as long as you can find something to put
inside it to keep the grain from going into your brew pot.

Mark R

 
 
 

Mini mash question

Post by Jack Erbe » Sat, 11 Oct 2003 11:18:39



<snip>

Quote:
>Question is, what is the best way to mash, in a bag or directly in the
>water.

I have been mini mashing grain (2 or 3 pounds at a time) for my
extract brews.  I use a grain bag that is only about 2/3rd's full when
it has 3 pounds of grain in it.  That will lay flat and completely
immersed in a 10 quart pot with 2-1/2 to 3-3/4 quarts of water in it
(I am using 1.25 quarts per pound of grain).  

I poke and prod the grain around in the bag occasionally during the
mash to keep the temperature even, I occasionally give a few moments
of low burner to keep things around the target temp.  

At the end of the mash I have the boil pot filled with water and
heated to about 180F and I simply dunk the entire grain bag in the
boil pot to rinse the grains.  Because there is so much water (5-1/2
gallons or so usually) it rinses the grain really well.  Then I drain
the grain bag in a colander and add that in the boil pot too.  I was
concerned about maybe getting too much tannin out of the grains that
way but it has not been a problem for me so far.  

After I get the grains rinsed, I add my LME and fire up for the boil.

So if you mash your grains in a bag you may be able to rinse your
grains in boil pot in the same bag.  

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