Something clicked in the last couple of weeks, and I’ve been brewing like crazy. The end result is this current state of my living room:
To get here, I started last Saturday with bottling the hard cider that had been settling. I knew based on how it was glowing last week that it was time…
I put it in the bottling bucket, using local honey as a primer.
Thirty bottles later, I had an empty carboy.
So what does one do when one has an empty carboy? Well, a wise one fills another. Though I hadn’t blogged about it, I did start a new coffee stout the weekend before.
The fermentation seemed to have settled, so I figured I’d rack it to another carboy for secondary fermentation.
For giggles, I bought some fermentation buckets – mostly because I found a local shop that sells brewing supplies. Well, ok, I did more than just buy some buckets. In fact, I prepared an amazing shopping list so I could do two new brews.
I also had a kit for making a ginger beer, which I decided to make into one of the fermentation buckets I bought.
For the other primary fermentation carboy, I decided to try a sweet potato porter recipe that I’ve modified from a pumpkin porter recipe. The Belgian ale will have to wait until I bottle the stout.
I started with some yams from the store. (I should add that I’m not entirely sure if there is a difference between yams and sweet potatoes, so I’ll use the terms interchangeably.)
This was also a new thing for me, that I got a grain crusher and prepared my own specialty grains.
What’s more, I used a fairly old balance that we found in one of our out buildings to weigh the grains for the brew in the first place.
After this, it was a pretty typical brew, with steeping of specialty grains…
Followed by a one-hour boil, cooling, and unceremonious dumping into a carboy. Then I poured the yeast over the top.
It has fermented rather happily, initially giving me a lovely cap, but now settled down quite significantly.
So there we are. One weekend. Two new brews. Thirty bottle of hard cider. And a stout that will be ready to bottle in another week or so. It was busy.
And after the holidays, I’ll be making the Belgian ale!