Author Topic: Cacao Nibs  (Read 3206 times)

Offline zacbwb

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Cacao Nibs
« on: September 23, 2010, 07:47:16 AM »
I am looking to add cacao nibs to an oatmeal stout and I am looking for recommendation on how I should add this, as well as how much for a 5 gallon batch.  I am looking for a very subtile chocolate flavor, nothing overpowering.

Adivce?

Offline gordonstrong

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Re: Cacao Nibs
« Reply #1 on: September 23, 2010, 07:48:21 AM »
Use them like oak chips.  Post-fermentation steep, taste frequently, pull when they're at the right level.
Gordon Strong • Beavercreek, Ohio • AHA Member since 1997 • Twitter: GordonStrong

Offline zacbwb

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Re: Cacao Nibs
« Reply #2 on: September 23, 2010, 07:53:31 AM »
Thanks Gordon, do you recommend a cetain amount of nibs for the steep?

Offline gordonstrong

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Re: Cacao Nibs
« Reply #3 on: September 23, 2010, 07:59:38 AM »
I don't use them much, so not really.  Like dry hops and oak, there's a quantity + contact time aspect in play.  The more you use, the faster the flavor will change, and the more critical timing becomes.

Pull off some, put it in a 1L pop bottle, and experiment.  Then scale up.  Or be ready to taste every day.   Either/both work.

Trust your palate.  "Overpowering" is subjective, and you're the person who matters most, so do it to your taste.
Gordon Strong • Beavercreek, Ohio • AHA Member since 1997 • Twitter: GordonStrong

Offline zacbwb

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Re: Cacao Nibs
« Reply #4 on: September 23, 2010, 08:09:55 AM »
Cool, sounds like a plan.  One more question for ya, is this something that I can do in the primary, or would you recommend transfering to a secondary before I start steeping?

Offline gordonstrong

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Re: Cacao Nibs
« Reply #5 on: September 23, 2010, 08:18:43 AM »
You can do it in either, depending on how long you think it will be.  Personally, I like to do all various adjustments (oaking, dry hopping, etc.) in a secondary so I don't have to worry about how long it takes, and I mix it without worrying about letting it sediment all over again.
Gordon Strong • Beavercreek, Ohio • AHA Member since 1997 • Twitter: GordonStrong

Offline Rhoobarb

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Re: Cacao Nibs
« Reply #6 on: September 23, 2010, 10:41:18 AM »
I brew a Chocolate Stout that calls for 8oz. of nibs in secondary.  I leave them for 14 days b/c I'm looking for a good chocolate aroma and taste profile. I'd recommend half of that for the same amount of days or, as Gordon suggests, check it.   
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Offline zacbwb

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Re: Cacao Nibs
« Reply #7 on: September 23, 2010, 11:04:51 AM »
Thanks, I appreciate the help!  I will try to remember to follow back around and let you know how it turns out.

Offline tschmidlin

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Re: Cacao Nibs
« Reply #8 on: September 23, 2010, 11:09:07 AM »
The Tcho cocao nibs I have recommend 4 oz in 5 gallons.
Tom Schmidlin

Offline bluesman

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Re: Cacao Nibs
« Reply #9 on: September 23, 2010, 11:14:50 AM »
You can do it in either, depending on how long you think it will be.  Personally, I like to do all various adjustments (oaking, dry hopping, etc.) in a secondary so I don't have to worry about how long it takes, and I mix it without worrying about letting it sediment all over again.

+1

Plus if you plan to harvest the yeast it's safer and more practical to make additions in the secondary.
Ron Price

Offline enso

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Re: Cacao Nibs
« Reply #10 on: September 23, 2010, 01:21:15 PM »
I have found if you leave them too long you can get an earthy (dirt) flavor that is somewhat drying.  Tannins I would suppose.  It is especially apparent in beers that are lighter i.e. have less roast character.  I tried some in a belgian dark strong and it was really apparent there.
Dave Brush

Offline skyler

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Re: Cacao Nibs
« Reply #11 on: September 24, 2010, 11:12:05 AM »
I'd go with one 4-6 oz package of nibs and don't even bother tasting for at least two weeks. YMMV, but I didn't get much from my 6 oz of nibs with 1 month of contact time (I was in an "I have to keg this now whether it's ready or not because I'm moving scenario, so no tasting). That was a 7% ABV stout.

Offline 1vertical

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Re: Cacao Nibs
« Reply #12 on: September 24, 2010, 09:50:01 PM »
My method is to winnow off the hulls of the beans and then make a slurry of
everclear and cacao in a blender...put this slurry in a pint jar and keep it in
a cool dark place for a couple weeks...adding everclear as needed to maintain
a liquid condition. Then add the entire slurry to secondary.....this serves to
assist in breaking down the cacao bean and it's oil/butter...also I would add a
little splash of some vanilla extract which helps get the aromatics rolling....

it works well...enjoy.  ;)
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Offline etbrew

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Re: Cacao Nibs
« Reply #13 on: September 26, 2010, 02:18:13 PM »
I have tossed the nibs in at flameout and let them steep for 15 minutes or so.  It gave ok flavor and aroma but I've been thinking about trying them in the secondary...

Offline amish electrician

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Re: Cacao Nibs
« Reply #14 on: September 28, 2010, 06:10:06 PM »
For my Chocolate Stout, I throw 6-8oz of crushed nibs into secondary, along with a couple vanilla beans for at least 2 weeks.  The choco flavor is pretty good for a few weeks then seems to fade rapidly so for next time I'm gonna try 8oz or so of some unsweetened lowfat cocoa powder.  And perhpas if that isn't enough I'll see about adding some chocolate extract.... or maybe just a squirt of Hershey's syrup in each pint  ;)