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Question steeping grains.

what is option 1
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What is option2
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Offline pedrolikesbeer

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Steeping Grains
« on: March 30, 2011, 10:04:25 AM »
I'm fairly new to home brewing and have maybe what might be considered a stupid question.  I've been doing extract brewing with kits and with the instructions and in my books I'm reading it says to to steep grains for 10-30 minutes at about 155 degrees.  My question is, should I get the water to that temperature before starting to steep or are you supposed to start steeping and then get the temperature to 155?  And what difference if any will it make in the overall taste of the beer?  Thanks.
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Offline denny

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Re: Steeping Grains
« Reply #1 on: March 30, 2011, 10:20:51 AM »
Either way is fine.  There will be no appreciable difference.
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Offline ethalacker

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Re: Steeping Grains
« Reply #2 on: March 30, 2011, 10:22:23 AM »
When i used steeping grains I would get the temp up to 155 then let it sit for 30 min.  But, I have heard of other people doing it the other way with good results.
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Offline Beer Monger

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Re: Steeping Grains
« Reply #3 on: March 30, 2011, 10:22:50 AM »
Start timing when you hit about 152 degrees - and try not to exceed 155 by much.

It is at this temperature that the starches in the grain are converted to sugars.  
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Offline denny

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Re: Steeping Grains
« Reply #4 on: March 30, 2011, 10:23:35 AM »
Start timing when you hit about 152 degrees - and try not to exceed 155 by much.

It is at this temperature that the starches in the grain are converted to sugars.  

Steeping grains usually don't have anything to be converted.
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Offline theoman

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Re: Steeping Grains
« Reply #5 on: March 30, 2011, 10:33:38 AM »
I would always put the grains in right away, let them steep while the water was heating up and pull them out just before it starts to boil. I did that for years and made some damn good extract brews.

Offline hokerer

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Re: Steeping Grains
« Reply #6 on: March 30, 2011, 10:35:46 AM »
I would always put the grains in right away, let them steep while the water was heating up and pull them out just before it starts to boil. I did that for years and made some damn good extract brews.

Just make sure your grain bag is not resting on the bottom of the pot while you're heating up so that it doesn't scorch
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Offline Beer Monger

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Re: Steeping Grains
« Reply #7 on: March 30, 2011, 10:41:09 AM »
Start timing when you hit about 152 degrees - and try not to exceed 155 by much.

It is at this temperature that the starches in the grain are converted to sugars.  

Steeping grains usually don't have anything to be converted.
You're right.  My mind is in the mash.  'Scuse me. 
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Offline gordonstrong

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Re: Steeping Grains
« Reply #8 on: March 30, 2011, 11:13:22 AM »
Either way is fine.  There will be no appreciable difference.

+1

This isn't mashing, no conversion.  Only washing out sugars that are already there.  The water to grain ratio is all wrong for mashing.
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Offline pedrolikesbeer

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Re: Steeping Grains
« Reply #9 on: March 30, 2011, 11:37:35 AM »
Thanks for the posts.  I'll try steeping at start.  That sounds like a good plan.  I just wasn't clear on that process.  Before, I couldn't even steep a cup of tea.  I'm get there someday. :D
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Offline gmac

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Re: Steeping Grains
« Reply #10 on: March 30, 2011, 11:48:29 AM »
Just make sure you take them all out before you boil (strain if you have to).  I had bad advice my first few batches (not from here) and left the grains in while boiling.  Very, very cloudy beer.  Course, I still drank it...

Offline pedrolikesbeer

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Re: Steeping Grains
« Reply #11 on: March 30, 2011, 11:58:37 AM »
Well, the story I have from the first time I tried steeping is somewhat funny.  I started steeping and didnt' realize the bag was resting on the bottom of the pot.  when I went to pull it out, I had scorched a hole in the bag.  Not good.  But wasn't all that bad, I strained it and kept going.  It actually didn't come out too bad.  Maybe a little overly bitter, but......I drank it. 

Hey, one way to learn is to mess up.  I don't think I'll do that again, but never say never.
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Offline denny

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Re: Steeping Grains
« Reply #12 on: March 30, 2011, 01:16:28 PM »
Either way is fine.  There will be no appreciable difference.

+1

This isn't mashing, no conversion.  Only washing out sugars that are already there.  The water to grain ratio is all wrong for mashing.

I recommend steepers use the same kind of water/grist rations that you'd use for mashing.  Not only does that get them in the groove if they want to mash, it also insures there won't be any tannins extracted due to a high pH caused by using too much water.
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Offline docmckee

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Re: Steeping Grains
« Reply #13 on: March 31, 2011, 06:03:27 AM »
Either way is fine.  There will be no appreciable difference.

+1

This isn't mashing, no conversion.  Only washing out sugars that are already there.  The water to grain ratio is all wrong for mashing.

I recommend steepers use the same kind of water/grist rations that you'd use for mashing.  Not only does that get them in the groove if they want to mash, it also insures there won't be any tannins extracted due to a high pH caused by using too much water.

I would suggest keeping the temperature under 170 F for the same reason.  Do not boil for sure!
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Offline denny

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Re: Steeping Grains
« Reply #14 on: March 31, 2011, 07:41:21 AM »
I would suggest keeping the temperature under 170 F for the same reason.  Do not boil for sure!

If you're _sure_ your pH is correct, than you can worry a lot less about temp.  If you're not sure, then the 170 rule is more important.  And yeah, don't boil!
« Last Edit: March 31, 2011, 07:44:23 AM by denny »
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