naturally, we approached this batch with a different method.
rather than using pumpkin and malt extract, we are using malted barley grain and dry malt extract.
in the tradition of our scientific brewing process, when we took the bag of soggy barley grain malt out of the water, it looked yummy enough that we tasted it.
it was delicious. still slightly sweet, warm, malty and satisfying.
at first, i immediately thought to feed it to bravo, my degu. all this delicious grain would be a nice treat for him. after munching on quite a bit of it ourselves, we became worried that it might be too sweet for him. degus don't digest sugar the way other mammals do, and are extremely prone to diabetes. they were first domesticated for diabetes research.
this spent grain was irresistibly sweet to our palates, despite being chewy and fibrous.
so degu feed was ruled out.
spiny the elder continues to refuse my love and any foods other than dry cat chow and peanut butter. so no grain for the hedgehog.
i wondered, perhaps we can toast this and grind it into flour?
but our grinder is ancient and difficult to use, it took me the better part of an hour to grind the almonds into flour for the christmas cookies.
we look online.
there we find info on how spent grain is used by breweries. in order of size, breweries sell it for cattle feed, compost it, sell it to make ethanol, sell it for growing mushrooms or in the case of a few small kraft breweries, bake it into bread.
since i just got some lovely plug spawn in the mail today for glow in the dark mushrooms and for blue oyster mushrooms, i decide to set some of the grain aside for that purpose.
the rest, i use to bake bread.
i used this here recipe as my guide, and also consulted my robot bread maker's recipe book. here is what i did:
add 1 1/2 cups water to 3 cups spent barley malt grain
blend mercilessly with ni's hand blender.
the resultant sludge was put into the bread pan.
added: 1/4 cup molasses
1/4 cup oil
1 tsp salt
1/3 cup oats
3 1/2 cups flour (one and a bit of whole wheat, the rest all purpose cause that's all we had)
i added 1 1/2 tsp yeast and set machine to dough cycle.
it came out very sticky, and i added more flour. i think it would benefit from adding at least another 1/2 cup at the beginning.
now it is resting, i have set 6 nice balls in a muffin tin, oiled them and covered them with a wet tea towel. they are resting and rising in the cold oven until morning, then i will bake them into buns for breakfast. the rest of the dough is waiting in the fridge.
i will report tomorrow on the bread's deliciousness.
this beer will be an India Pale Ale. it looks rather dark to me for something called a pale ale. this is explained by the origin of india pale ales. the legend tells that beer often went bad during shipping to england's distant indian colonies. hops tend to have a preserving effect on beers, so a special kind of beer was developed that was rather bitter, and had extra hops added to it after it had been fermenting for a little while. this resulted in a beer that was stable enough to keep for the long sea voyage to india. they tended to be lighter than the beer made for domestic consumption, but it is the addition of the dry hops and the bitterness that characterizes an IPA, not it's colour.
further to the awesome things that happened today, the government has determined that i am doing such a good job of being unemployed that they are giving me a raise. my EI payments are rolling in.
i think it might be time to eat some spicy papaya salad.
yum yum yum
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