If you love beer, you should definitely brew it yourself. After all, you will get a craft beer tailored to your personal taste!
Before starting the brewing process at home, think about whether you want to make a bottom-fermented beer like Helles or Pilsener or a top-fermented one such as wheat beer and Kölsch: Bottom-fermented beers require refrigeration and require a longer shelf life. It is therefore recommended to start with top-fermented beer. Hobby brewers who follow the German Beer Purity Law exclusively use hops, for example in the form of pellets, malt, dried yeast and water.
Brew beer better: hops or hop extract?
Industrial beers are often brewed using hops extract whose aroma is isolated by liquid carbon dioxide. Craft beer and hobby brewers prefer to use natural hops. Powdered and pressed into convenient pellets, they are particularly easy to store, last longer and easy to dose.
Brief instructions for beer brewing
To make 20 liters of beer at home, you need:
• A 20 l holding pot
• A 20 liter fermentation tank
• 20 liters of water
• 5 kg of malted malt
• 10 to 20 g dry yeast
• 20 to 100 g of natural hops
• Iodine solution for testing the mash
• A sieve
• Beer spindle for measuring the original wort
• Bottles for filling
All utensils should be boiled before use to avoid contamination of the beer!
Heat the water to 65 degrees and add the whole malt. Stir well and soak for 15 minutes at this temperature. Then simmer for another 15 minutes at 71 degrees.
Take one teaspoon of mash, place on a plate and drizzle with a little iodine solution. If this turns red to yellow, heat the pot to 78 degrees.
After another 10 minutes, squeeze the mash and boil the remaining liquid for one hour. 30 minutes before the end of the cooking time, stir the hops under the liquid. When the cooking process is complete, filter everything, fill the liquid in a fermentation tank and let it cool overnight.
Now the yeast, like the broth it should have room temperature and in any case below 25 degrees, carefully sprinkled on the surface of the sud and stopped stirring for half an hour. Then use a ladle to scoop up the liquid from bottom to top, so that it is supplied with oxygen.
The fermentation tank is closed in such a way that air remains on the contents and stored at about 18 to 21 degrees. Every 24 hours the fermentation process can be checked. First, thick foam forms which has disappeared once the main fermentation has ended. The original wort content provides information about the progress of fermentation and must therefore be checked regularly with the aid of a beer spindle: If it remains the same for several days, the so-called green beer can be bottled.
Caution: If the green beer contains less than 4% alcohol, it should not be bottled, otherwise the bottles will burst. In addition, a too early filled beer has a yeast layer on the bottom of the bottle.
The secondary fermentation takes place in the bottle and lasts several weeks: the first ten days the beer is stored at room temperature, the rest of the time – the remaining 14 days – in the refrigerator.
Does it sound like a lot of work? It is. If the whole thing is too time-consuming, you should consider to stock up on a craft beer kit from an online shop!
Enjoy the your beer!