My Mk II mash tun seemed like an ideal candidate for a steeping and germination vessel. It's made of a home brew bucket with holes drilled in the bottom inside another one with a tap at the bottom.
Here's the inside:
I decided to start with an overnight steep.
Draining it for the first air rest:
Air rest until the afternoon then the second steep:
And then drained again at night:
After two steeps and air rests it was ready for germination:
|See the tips of the rootlets poking out|
The rootlets start growing very quickly:
I'd had a clump in the middle that hadn't mixed and the grains had got a lot hotter and grown a lot more. Fortunately most of them were like this:
I decided to include a withering stage, letting them partially dry on the floor.
That a few grains had bolted showed that the germination process needs tweaking a bit but nothing too major. My real problems started with the kilning. Keeping the malt on a tray meant I could only put a small amount at a time in the oven. I left the rest on the floor to wither more, but it was a long and involved process to get it all kilned, and even then the moisture content was still high at just over 8%. Initially I heated with the oven at a very low setting to remove as much water as possible before cranking up to over 100°C for the final kilning.
I did even worse with removing the rootlets and in the end admitted defeat. I tried shaking the grains in a colander but as well as the roots falling through the holes quite a few grains did too. I could only do a very small amount of grains at a time too, so rather than spend hours doing it I gave in and used the machine at work. Who'd have though that one of the first tasks of a post-apocalyptic society will be to build a deculming machine?
Tune in for the next episode to see if I'll be happily sipping a pint as the zombie hordes hammer at my door or if the brewing all went horribly wrong.