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Do I need to use more malt if its homemade

Discussion in 'Homebrewing' started by Keyman, Dec 11, 2012.

  1. Keyman

    Keyman Disciple (55) Dec 4, 2012

    Had some trouble navigating on this forum but I will try again. I was told that when you use your own homemade malt you have to add more to a grain bill to get the same results. After making my malt I did some tests. First I used my homemade malt by adding one ounce of malt to two cups of 154-degree water in a thermos for 60 minutes. I strained the liquid and took a gravity reading and I got 1.017. Next I took some German pilsner malt the same way. I put one once of malt with 2 cups of 153 degree water in a thermos for 60 minutes. I strained it of and read the specific gravity and it tested at 1.020. When I look at these two tests I don’t see much of a change. Does anyone have a comment on this? Do you think I need to add more grain when using my homemade malt to a grain bill? If so how much extra would one use as a rule of thumb?
     
  2. ericj551

    ericj551 Advocate (590) Alberta (Canada) Apr 29, 2004 Subscriber

    Sounds like you're getting about 18% better extraction from the commercial malt. I think this is significant enough that you should scale it up by 18%.
     
    inchrisin likes this.
  3. telejunkie

    telejunkie Savant (390) Vermont Sep 14, 2007

    it probably has to do with modification levels in the commercial vs. homemade...or could have to do with your source of barley. My first guess is that your malt may be less modified and therefore needs more intensive extraction processes to achieve the same levels as the commercial versions. Back in the day decoctions & other step mash regimes were used to improve yields on less modified malts. I would try a step mash and see if that improves the yield.
     
  4. Malting is easy, to do it well is not and it takes skill and experience to malt efficiently.It also depends upon the quality of your base grain. Most barley makes for bland malt, that's why a premium is paid to farmers to grow specialist grain. So I would imagine you would need to up the quantities significantly.
     
  5. VikeMan

    VikeMan Champion (855) Pennsylvania Jul 12, 2009 Verified

     
  6. telejunkie

    telejunkie Savant (390) Vermont Sep 14, 2007

    i thought this more had to do with protein levels than starch levels though...?
     
  7. Keyman

    Keyman Disciple (55) Dec 4, 2012

    Thanks for the replys. So if I use a reciept that calls for 10 pounds of malt then I need to add a little over 1 3/4 (18%) pound more of my homemade malt to get this results. I will give that a shot. Thanks!
     
  8. WickedSluggy

    WickedSluggy Advocate (520) Texas Nov 21, 2008 Verified

    Since it is home made you dont get the benefit of an analysis sheet, but it looks like you are on the right track as far as methodology on your own analysis. As others have mentioned, it is possible that your malt will benefit from a protein rest. You migbt as well test that too. Once you have done this the amount of malt you need is a mater of simy using your analysis to produce the desired gravity for the recipe. I have never malted my own grains. Sounds like fun. I hope you will let us know how it turns out
     
  9. True enough, good malting barley has low nitrogen content. But it's also flavourful , which means opting for specific varieties which don't give high yields per acre.Even if the variety is correct it needs certain growing conditions such as soil structure and climate.That's why certain areas are famous for growing brewing barley and just a few miles away farmers don't attempt it.If yours is ordinary domestic barley then it would help to increase the amount used.
     
  10. Keyman

    Keyman Disciple (55) Dec 4, 2012

    This barley comes from North Dakota and is in the infant stage of becoming brewers barley. Check out the info here..http://www.ag.ndsu.nodak.edu/aginfo/seedstock/Brochures/conlon.htm