Author Topic: Caramelized sugar  (Read 2446 times)

Offline gmac

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Caramelized sugar
« on: July 04, 2012, 04:19:00 AM »
I've never had a "creme brulee milk stout" but I love the sound of it.  I'm thinking of trying something that includes dark caramelized, practically burnt sugar but I'm wondering if that caramel flavour (not butterscotch, think burnt sugar) would come through in a beer.  Here is what I'm thinking.

8 lbs Maris Otter
1 lb Black Patent
1 lb C 120
1 lb Pale chocolate
1 lb lactose
2 lbs caramelized sugar
2 oz EKG at 60
Vanilla beans (2) in secondary
Wyeast Irish Ale Yeast (have a big pitch ready to go from an Irish Red I just kegged).

Would the burnt sugar flavour come through in this (and would you want it to?)

Offline mihalybaci

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Re: Caramelized sugar
« Reply #1 on: July 04, 2012, 03:28:27 PM »
 I haven't really brewed with vanilla, but two vanilla beans seems like it would be too strong. Maybe it would be better to use a good vanilla extract (I think America's Test Kitchen rated McCormick Vanilla Extract as their top supermarket choice) and add it in doses until you get the flavor you like.

Offline nateo

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Re: Caramelized sugar
« Reply #2 on: July 04, 2012, 03:38:16 PM »
I make a bunch of candi syrup. Burnt sugar flavor definitely comes through in the finished product. There are a couple things going on when you make caramel to keep in mind. PH affects dehydration reactions. As your sugar darkens, the pH falls, increasing further dehydration. When your sugar molecules run out of water, that's when they "burn." In an alkaline solution, you won't really ever get "burnt sugar" flavors, unless you take it to very high temps. In an acidic solution, you'll get burnt flavors at a much lower temp.

If you don't want to mess with acids and bases, just take your sugar syrup up to around 300* or so and that should give you some nice burnt sugar notes. If you go much higher than 300* it'll become way too acrid.
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Offline jmcamerlengo

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Re: Caramelized sugar
« Reply #3 on: July 09, 2012, 03:56:38 PM »
I think Southern Tier does this with their creme brulee stout. I also seem to recall reading an article about a clone of it in some BYO or Zymurgy.
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Offline noonancm

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Re: Caramelized sugar
« Reply #4 on: July 09, 2012, 06:38:18 PM »
The article, I believe, is in the December, 2011's issue of BYO.

Being a fan of Creme Brulee, I tried a bottle of Southern Tier's and decided to try my own version. After some research (discovering I had lost my December issue). I found two basic approaches: using the caramelized sugar or using some crystal malts for the caramel flavor. I decided to use the caramelized sugar to see what happens to the taste. Wish I could say how it tastes but it is still in the carboy. It did require a blow-off.

As for the vanilla, I decided to go with the extract at bottling time in order to determine the vanilla flavor and also to keep it as long as possible. My experience with vanilla is that it can fade over the course of time.