Just a warning, this is the first beer I have ever attempted to brew. So please go easy, I've got really shaky knees since I'm a rookie. I brewed and started fermenting this beer yesterday. It's a Brown Ale and I got recipe from Eric at Homebrew Provisions. When I got home from work today I checked it and it was hissing really bad and it looked like this:
The airlock is filled with foam and other stuff and leaked a little bit of liquid onto the floor where i was storing it. I moved it to the kitchen (in case something explodes) and let it sit there and foam for a bit. After some really serious hissing I popped a little bit of the airlock open when hops and other mash went everywhere as seen in the picture.
I've been reading around on the internet and everywhere seems to say I'm ok, its just a very vigorous reaction with the yeast. Everyone else also says since its just a lot of CO2 being released from the carboy I don't need to be too worried about infection. What I would want to do is clean out the airlock to allow maximum gas flow but what I don't want to do is remove the airlock and have hops and mash all over the place and not in the beer.
Do I need to remove the airlock to clean it? Should I be worried about contamination while I am cleaning and re-sanitizing the airlock? I haven't ruined my beer have I? What can I do in the future to keep this from happening or is this really normal?