My husband is a beer aficionado. I don’t drink alcohol or coffee, because I have never been able to appreciate acquired tastes. It just does not make sense to me. Logic dictates that if something tastes bad, you stop drinking it. However the brains of those who have developed acquired tastes operate differently. “That tastes awful. Let’s have more.” Kinda gotta wonder about those people. J I cannot tease me husband too much about his acquired tastes though, because I think I might be one of them. I like to garden, and he likes beer. I would prefer that he have GMO free beer, and I am kinda cheap. So I started making beer as a way to insure cheap GMO free beer and a way to use up my extra fruit. Since I don’t like beer, I require his feedback to find out what the beer needs and how it turned out. We have found that this is a great marriage building exercise. It is a fun way to work on our communication skills.
While trying to use up my extra fruit, I discovered a great way to add raw fruit to beer. I usually have extra raspberries and apples. The danger of adding raw fruit to the wort is that boiling releases pectin which can thicken the wort. Also raw fruit can add wild yeast to your wort and compete with the cultivated yeast you are adding. You are supposed to add your fruit to the secondary fermenter in the form of a fruit puree. Through experiementation, I’ve found that I like using fruit as a wort chiller better. For apples, I cut up and boil the apples in water until they are tender, and then I freeze them until I need them. When I am making beer, I pull them out and use the frozen fruit as a way to cool my wort (instead of a wort chiller). I have found that my husband enjoys about 37 large apples added to 5 gallons of beer. Adding raspberries is even easier. I freeze the raspberries on a cookie sheet as I pick them. Freezing them kills the wild yeast and works as well as pasteurizing them through boiling. When they are frozen, I put them in a plastic sandwich bag. Six bags added to cool the wort is just about right.
It is nice to listen to an audio book while you are putzing with all this stuff. Locust & Honey Publications just released False Idols. My husband, Adam, narrates this book. It is a little like “Star Wars” because it combines religious, philosophical, and technological themes with awesome edge of your seat action and a great story. Great listening. See you next week.