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Messages - tschmidlin

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All Things Food / Re: Ethnic and Regional Cooking
« on: October 21, 2010, 01:29:22 PM »
Logging in after a couple weeks travelling the West

I was wondering what happened to you.  

C'mon Nic....Don't you know you have to let us know when your going on vacation.  ;D
He did, you just weren't paying attention.   ;D

Those look great!  I think the most I've smoked is 4 hours and I didn't see much coloring, except for maybe a slight darkening of the pepper jack (that may've been my imagination).  These pics make me want to do some straight away, but alas, I have to go on a lovely two week vacation this morning, at 6AM, driving across the southwest to california and back, seeing 5 national parks and generally relaxing, so it will have to wait til I get back, for shame.   ;D

Ingredients / Re: Water Profile help for FW Union Jack-extract
« on: October 21, 2010, 01:26:34 PM »
My tap water has 36 ppm calcium, I've brewed beers with as low as 10 ppm. Commercially, several Bohemian beers are brewed successfully with low calcium as well as beers in, say, Portland Oregon.
My water has 15 ppm Ca and it generally converts fine when I don't add calcium.  But by adding calcium to 50 ppm I'm giving myself one less thing to worry about.  I don't treat my sparge water, so the ppm drops down again in the boil.  I don't think I've ever said you have to hit 50 ppm or it won't convert, but if I did somewhere it's withdrawn  ;)

Amylase requires calcium to work, so having more calcium will help make more of it active, to a point.  But I haven't done the experiments to figure out a curve of ppm Ca+2 to time when converting a mash.  Maybe it's just that 50 ppm is recommended so you can be sure to have finished converting within 60 minutes for most malt types, I don't know the research behind it.

BTW, here is a link to another forum where a user got a water analysis from Briess. Not pretty.
Looks like the same one I linked to above.  :)

Ingredients / Re: Water Profile help for FW Union Jack-extract
« on: October 21, 2010, 01:10:26 PM »
Just because you're using distilled water doesn't mean you'll have low mineral content.


Do you mean after the addition of the extract, or before the addition?
Really, you need to ask?  ;D  After of course. :)

All Things Food / Re: BBQ Style
« on: October 21, 2010, 01:07:40 PM »
Yeah, I was trying to think of how to fit a grate in there and then thought, I don't really need a grate at all.  It worked really well with stuff I had lying around.  The top picked up a lot more color than the bottom, and the chunk of gouda (not pictured) that I threw on was a bit too close to the heat source and got a tad melty in spots, but nothing terrible.  Looking forward to trying it after I let it rest for a week or so.

Other Fermentables / Re: Milk?
« on: October 21, 2010, 12:09:25 PM »
My brother who works for one of the pharmaceutical companies told me that they are looking hard at the organisms in kefir. They are thinking about drugs to replenish healthy bacteria in the body that gets killed off in people that are taking heavy doses of antibiotics. Antibiotics kill everything even the natural healthy flora in the body.

Thats pretty interesting.
Really, drugs to help replenish the healthy bacteria?  Why not just feed the people kefir and yogurt?  That's what I do when I'm on antibiotics, it helps with some of the digestion side effects I get. :)

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: 5 gallon sanitizing bucket
« on: October 21, 2010, 11:23:57 AM »
I would use a food grade bucket, an old fermenter that is too scratched for brewing works well, even if it has been contaminated.  It's ok (but not ideal) if the scratches have stuff growing in them, you're not putting your spoon in the scratch.  Any contamination that comes out of the scratch into solution will be killed off by the starsan.

Even without a food grad bucket though, it will probably be fine.

All Things Food / Re: BBQ Style
« on: October 21, 2010, 10:33:02 AM »
I couldn't get it to stay lit for more than a couple of minutes no matter where I put it.  It needed a flame to keep burning.

Thanks for the link bluesman.  It's possible that the density of the wood is the problem, although it could also be the consistency of the dust.  They weren't obviously that different, but I didn't look too closely and definitely didn't screen them or anything :) 

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: payment plan for lifetime membership
« on: October 21, 2010, 10:18:36 AM »
Payment plan euge, payment plan.  I think they were looking for an option other than lump sum.  ;)

Ingredients / Re: Water Profile help for FW Union Jack-extract
« on: October 21, 2010, 10:16:14 AM »
Well, there is no reason to worry about the calcium levels, that is mostly important in the mash and you're not mashing (except for that Munich).

Calcium also is important to yeast (particularly flocculation) and precipitates oxalate early on reducing beer stone later. I think this latter point is the most important for homebrewers who rarely consider beerstone in their cleaning regimen.

I am actually skeptical that calcium is all that important in the mash as bohemian pilsener mashes, assuming pH is controlled via acid, seem to be every bit as robust as any other mash, at least in my brewery (and presumably bohemian breweries as they can but are not adding calcium).

That said, I tend to think 30 ppm is probably plenty and 50 is very conservatively high.
Fair enough, calcium is necessary for flocculation.  But you really don't need much at all, so it's not really worth worrying about IMO.  Yeast strain plays a much larger role in my experience.

Re: calcium in mashes, what is your water profile like?  Maybe 50 ppm is higher than it needs to be, or maybe at 50 ppm you convert faster and more confidently without testing for conversion (I haven't checked for conversion in years).

Those are nice and would work really well.  Quite a bit more pricey than the others, but in more manageable quantities.  I mean, it's nice to get 1000 for $20, but then you have 1000 tubes . . .

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: cooling my wort (new brewer)
« on: October 21, 2010, 09:19:29 AM »
pre-boiled ice.
Hilarious when taken by itself  ;D

Other Fermentables / Re: Kvas
« on: October 21, 2010, 12:20:46 AM »
I'd love to see more as you have time to do them.  No rush though, and no pressure.

If you're talking about autoclaving the tubes, yeah, they'll melt.  If you're just talking about adding autoclaved agar to them, it should be fine as long as you let it cool sufficiently before you add it to the tube.

On the other hand, glass tubes can be gotten cheaply.  I don't know what you'll do with 1000 of them, but these are inexpensive and (comparatively) in your area.  Add some parafilm and you'll be set for a long time. :)

Other Fermentables / Re: Kvas
« on: October 20, 2010, 11:48:43 PM »
That's really cool, thanks for posting it.  I don't know that I'll try it any time soon, but I'd like to make some kvass at some point. :)

This should give you a good idea of what I'll be doing this weekend . . .  ;D

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