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Summer beer tip

Submitted by: Anonymous on June 27th, 2002

If you'd like to lighten the body of a cream ale or some other beer, try using Minute Rice or instant polenta. Big breweries have been using corn and rice for years, but they can really help out a light beer. Since both Minute Rice and instant polenta starches are pre-gelatinized, you can just toss them in the mash with your malt, no cereal mash is needed. For the lightest body, convert your mash at about 146F. DO NOT use these as specialty grains in an extract brew...they need to be mashed with pale malt in order to convert the starches to sugar. Using them as steeping grains will lead to starches (and possible infections) in your beer.

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Re: Summer beer tip Jun 28th 2002, 11:56 pm
How does adding rice or polenta affect the alcohol? I presume most people would want a lighter bodied beer to have a lower alcohol content (esp if it's for a summer beer), but what if you want to maintain (or even ramp up) the alcohol content while keeping the color light?
Comment by: rob reply to comment
Re: Summer beer tip Jun 29th 2002, 07:53 pm
Rob, then you'd just cut back on the malt. Of course, both the rice and polenta will provide fermentable sugars and up the alcohol content. Cut back the malt to compensate. Also, don't overhop it..it's a light delicate flavor that can get overwhelmed easily. And, while you _might_ want a light summer beer to have a lower alcohol content, it's not to bad to up the alcohol...the lightness makes it fairly undetectable!
Comment by: Denny Conn reply to comment
Re: Summer beer tip Jul 23rd 2002, 10:18 pm
Denny - since when do you care about lightening up on the alcohol in a brew??? (grin).

I've had a beer last weekend brewed like this and it was yummy. Lighter than a lot of wheat beers I've made/tried.
Comment by: mjarvis reply to comment