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General Category => Ingredients => Topic started by: twodogbrew69 on October 08, 2010, 04:16:23 pm

Title: Secondary additions - sanitation questions
Post by: twodogbrew69 on October 08, 2010, 04:16:23 pm
Hello all - I am going to add hazelnuts and cacao nibs to a stout's secondary and wanted to know if I should do anything to them in the way of sanitation first before adding them?  I don't really want to boil them at all, but don't want to infect my beer either.  Any and all help please!  Thanks!

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Title: Re: Secondary additions - sanitation questions
Post by: denny on October 08, 2010, 04:36:52 pm
I've used nibs without sanitizing them and there were no problems.  Don't know about hazelnuts.  I think I'd be inclined to use hazelnut extract instead.  It would be much easier to control the flavor addition from it and you wouldn't have to worry about oils from the nuts.
Title: Re: Secondary additions - sanitation questions
Post by: tschmidlin on October 08, 2010, 04:40:52 pm
Generally the low pH and alcohol % will inhibit microbes, but don't throw in anything that is obviously moldy or otherwise nasty.

Denny makes a good point about the hazelnuts, but if you do them straight you might want to toast them a bit.  I'd be more likely to toast them and soak them in alcohol for a while, then dose when packaging.

Let us know how it goes.
Title: Re: Secondary additions - sanitation questions
Post by: twodogbrew69 on October 08, 2010, 04:46:19 pm
I thought about using the extract but after a miserable experience using cherry extract before, I did not want to venture back towards that area.  I was going to crush the nuts and nibs a bit before adding to the fermentor.  Toasting might be a good idea too.
Title: Re: Secondary additions - sanitation questions
Post by: denny on October 08, 2010, 05:43:15 pm
I thought about using the extract but after a miserable experience using cherry extract before, I did not want to venture back towards that area.  I was going to crush the nuts and nibs a bit before adding to the fermentor.  Toasting might be a good idea too.

Keep in mind that Rogue makes a killer hazelnut beer, and they use extract. 
Title: Re: Secondary additions - sanitation questions
Post by: bluesman on October 08, 2010, 06:03:53 pm
I'd be more likely to toast them and soak them in alcohol for a while, then dose when packaging.

+1

Heat the hazelnuts to 200F for an hour to sanitize.


Title: Re: Secondary additions - sanitation questions
Post by: tumarkin on October 08, 2010, 06:25:06 pm
I'd be more likely to toast them and soak them in alcohol for a while, then dose when packaging.

hmmmm..... if you're going to soak them in alcohol, try using a nice rum.
rum-cocoa nibs-hazelnut.... that could be a killer combo.




Title: Re: Secondary additions - sanitation questions
Post by: denny on October 08, 2010, 07:41:02 pm
Ever tried the rum Rogue makes from the hazelnut brown?
Title: Re: Secondary additions - sanitation questions
Post by: tom on October 08, 2010, 07:43:34 pm
I don't know if the heat would change the flavor.
You could also break them up and soak them in vodka.
Title: Re: Secondary additions - sanitation questions
Post by: ajk on October 09, 2010, 04:40:09 pm
I made a hazelnut brown ale with extract (I forget the brand, but I got it from Whole Foods) added to secondary.  It tasted great and placed second in a local (but very large) competition.  I avoided real hazelnuts because of what I'd heard about the oils affecting head retention, but I've never actually tried them.
Title: Re: Secondary additions - sanitation questions
Post by: twodogbrew69 on October 09, 2010, 05:55:35 pm
How much extract would you guys recommend for a 5 gal batch?
Title: Re: Secondary additions - sanitation questions
Post by: denny on October 09, 2010, 07:41:17 pm
How much extract would you guys recommend for a 5 gal batch?

That's the beauty of extract....you don't have to guess!  Just add to taste before bottling or kegging.  What I do is pour 4 2 oz. samples of the finished beer.  Dose each with a different, measured amount.  Taste and decide which you like best, then scale that amount up to your batch size.
Title: Re: Secondary additions - sanitation questions
Post by: ajk on October 09, 2010, 07:48:41 pm
How much extract would you guys recommend for a 5 gal batch?

I don't have my notes handy from that batch (would be different for a different base beer anyway), but I recommend pouring a liter (exactly) of base beer, then add extract with a medicine dropper, say 0.4 mL at a time, until you like what you taste.  Then figure out what you'd need proportionally for a 5-gal. batch, and add half that to the keg.  You can always add more to taste, buy you can't subtract.

Also, I find what tastes great in a couple of sips can be too much to drink a whole pint of.  You're going for harmony.
Title: Re: Secondary additions - sanitation questions
Post by: animaldoc on October 12, 2010, 01:46:35 am
Don't blame all flavor extracts because you had a bad experience with cherry -- that's the worst of the lot.  Always (to me anyway) tastes like cough medeiine.

Have had good experiences with apricot and coconut, and ok with raspberry .... sorry, that was fruit puree.

I agree though if you are going to use real nuts toast 'em first!

-- Scott
Title: Re: Secondary additions - sanitation questions
Post by: gordonstrong on October 12, 2010, 05:34:34 pm
+1 toasting

Try some Frangelico and see if you like it.  Mix it in a small glass as a test first.
Title: Re: Secondary additions - sanitation questions
Post by: alikocho on October 12, 2010, 07:29:23 pm
I'd agree with toasting, not just to sanitize, but also to get the nut oils to release for flavour.