How To Make Beer
Step #1 "The equipment":
- Most items can be purchased at your local homebrew store.
- #1 Fermenter, usually a food-grade plastic bucket with a tight-fitting lid (more experienced brewers may use a glass carboy).
- #2 Airlock and stopper to allow carbon dioxide to escape during fermentation while keeping air out.
- #3 Thermometer.
- #4 Racking cane & tubing for transferring beer from one vessel to another.
- #5 Bottles, about 50 12-oz. bottle for each 5-gallon batch, new or reused.
- #6 Bottled filler to transfer beer into bottles.
- #7 Bottle capper, a device that clamps bottle caps on bottles.
- #8 Sanitizing agent & bottle-cleaning brush.
- #9 Kitchen supplies - a stove, large pot, cooking spoon, strainer, measuring cup, can opener, and a cup or bowl.
Step #2 "The ingredients":
- Beer is made from 4 basic ingredients: barley, water, hops and yeast.
- Brewers yeast + malt sugar + carbon dioxide (CO2), alcohol (C2H5OH).
- Beer is created when brewers yeast converts malt sugar into alcohol and carbon dioxide.
Step #3 "The basic process":
- #1 Sanitizing: The most important step. Nothing can spoil a batch of beer faster than stray bacteria.
- #2 Mashing: Steep grains in hot (but not boiling) water to make wort, a sweet liquid that's basically unfermented beer.
- #3 Boiling: Bring wort to a rolling boil and add hops - the flower of the hop plant that gives the beer flavor - according to the recipe.
- #4 Fermentation: Chill wort and transfer to fermenter. Pitch yeast. Store beer away from sunlight and wait one to several weeks, depending on the recipe.
- #5 Bottling: You now have beer! But it's flat beer. In order to carbonate it, you must prime it with additional fermentable sugars and bottle it. Then wait at least two weeks.
- #6 Drink up!
OC Weekly | Sources: American Homebrewers Association; SoYouWanna.com; Popular Mechanics; Barley Bandits.