Extract brewing (a few specific questions)

Discussion in 'Homebrewing' started by Wiffler27, Sep 29, 2016.

  1. Wiffler27

    Wiffler27 Meyvn (1,214) Aug 16, 2009 New Jersey
    Premium Member Beer Trader

    i bought my homebrewing equipment last year and have made a few batches. i only have the equipment for extract brewing, previously i've bought extract brewing kits to brew with. they come with all the ingredients (including speciality grain to steep and then malt syrup (1lbs grain vs 9lbs malt, roughly).

    i still only have the equipment for extract brewing, which i'm fine with (for now).

    my problem is most of the recipes online i've found (and read from the brewing books i have) call for all grain related brews. i know what malt i would use for my beers if it were simply all-grain.

    1 - is it possible to determine what malt extract (and amount) i would use to replicate a specific all-grain bill?
    2 - since i'm using roughly 90% LME how do i choose my 1lbs of grain for initial steeping in the boil?

    i don't want to use the kits anymore (at least for my IPAs). i have 2 recipes written out i wanna brew, each recipe is modeled after a few commercial IPAs i consider similar and great.

    3 - i saw on the recipe side of this forum a "perfectly average IPA" (or some name like that) that called for Magnum at 60' and then Centennial/Cascade/Simcoe during the boil and dry hop. i actually chose those 3 hops for my recipe beforehand but was gonna use Columbus as the bittering hop; any feedback? mine was modeled after Union Jack, Fat Head's Head Hunter and Alpine Pure Hoppiness.
    4 - my other recipe was gonna be Nugget at 60' then Galaxy/Mosaic/Citra during boil and dry hop. I modeled this after Carton O'Dub, Long Trail Space Juice, and Yard's Cape of Good Hope. would you use Nugget at the beginning of your boil? if not, what would you use and why? (and just saw this is the "perfectly average NE IPA")
    so i'm clearly not reinventing the wheel, i wanna start with the stuff i like and move from there.

    these are the questions i've been pondering. i'm most interested in the malt because i'm not sure how to decide my malt bill when most recipes are for all-grain.

    #1 Wiffler27, Sep 29, 2016
    Last edited: Sep 29, 2016
  2. Ilanko

    Ilanko Aspirant (200) Aug 3, 2012 New York

    You might consider using Brewing Software that help you determine and adjust ingredient.
    Other approach will be is using the book Brewing Classic Styles, all recipe in the book provide in both DME/LME and all-grain
    inchrisin likes this.
  3. inchrisin

    inchrisin Defender (654) Sep 25, 2008 Indiana

    All of your converted grains, crystal malts, chocolate, patent, etc., will be the same amount for an extract batch or an all grain batch. You'll typically have a steeping bag for extract brewing.

    A rough conversion is that 6# of Dry Malt Extract (DME) is equal to about 10# of base malt. You might want to stay away from Liquid Malt Extract (LME). It doesn't store as well, in my limited experience. It's easier to store half a bag of powder than liquid syrup after you brew a batch and you don't want to use all of your ingredients. LME is also a little more watered down then DME. 25% per pound or so. Each brand of malt extract is probably a little different.

    My favorite recipe book Brewing Classic Styles BCS has a lot of great recipes. Most recipes are listed for all grain AND extract brewers.
    #3 inchrisin, Sep 29, 2016
    Last edited: Sep 29, 2016
  4. pweis909

    pweis909 Poo-Bah (1,704) Aug 13, 2005 Wisconsin
    Premium Member

    While I brew almost exclusively all grain recipes for going on >10 yrs, I will occasionally brew something with extract. When making recipes from extract, try to stick with extracts that are composed of all base malts and use the grains to make up the specialty malts. Light and extra light DME are good choices. Wheat DME is a good choice if you want wheat in your recipe. There are Munich and Maris Otter malt extracts in liquid form, and if you can't get them in dry form (not sure if they exist), the liquid is worth it if you want those flavor contributions.

    The reason to sticking to simple extracts, i.e. those made without specialty grains, is because you generally know what is present. It is not always easy to find out what made that can of dark LME dark. If you were making a stout with a dark LME extract, would you know how much roasted grain to steep, how much crystal malt to steep? You might not know the make up of the extract, and if not, any guesses on steeping grains is, well, a shot in the dark.

    You may be able to learn the grist contents of extracts if you do some searching around on the web, but in general, the lighter ones are made from base malt or maybe base malt and a bit of carapils. They are pretty much a blank slate waiting for specialty grains.
    inchrisin likes this.