idea for saving starter wort

Discussion in 'General Brewing Discussions' started by wolfie7873, Mar 3, 2016.

  1. wolfie7873

    wolfie7873 Member

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    So, I had an idea.

    It occurred to me the other day that one could keep a supply of starter wort around in the following manner:

    mash an amount of base malt. Sparge, lauter and collect runnings. Boil for the greater of 5 minutes or past the hot-break. pour into prepared mason jars, seal up, and heat in a canning pot like you're putting up green beans.

    No need to keep DME around, no need for chill time, just a stock of mason jars full of sterile wort on the shelf conveniently at room temperature ready for a yeast culture when you want to make a starter.

    Am I missing anything obvious for why I wouldn't want to do this?
     
  2. Ozarks Mountain Brew

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    yes can it or even freeze it is just fine, just make sure when you can it, you doing it right with a pressure cooker or like you said
     
  3. jmcnamara

    jmcnamara Well-Known Member

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    I did that exact same thing. I think i used about 6 lbs of grain, and managed to get 12 1qt jars at the end. Even had about a half gallon left over.
    they are super simple to use. just need to sanitize your beaker or whatever, pour 2 jars in, and you're good to go.
    i didn't boil mine before canning it, probably explains why there was some gunk in the jars. Starters seemed to work just fine though.
    oh, and be sure to keep them in the heat for long enough so nothing grows in there. I believe it's 20 minutes, but don't take my word for it
     
  4. sbaclimber

    sbaclimber Active Member

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    I freeze a set amount from each brew.
    It is a bit of a PITA, but at least I don't have to gestimate with OGs and such...
     
  5. jmcnamara

    jmcnamara Well-Known Member

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    wort-cicle? brew-cicle?
     
  6. sbaclimber

    sbaclimber Active Member

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    brew-cicle sounds better, but it I make a wort-cicle. :D
    Right after I measure my OG and right before I pitch my yeast, I pull off some wort to freeze.
    ...just realized, I may well be posting OT here...
    I am talking about priming gyle. I just realized wolfie was talking about wort for a yeast starter.
    My bad...! (home brew may have been involved... :roll: )
     
  7. Head First

    Head First Well-Known Member

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    Different products take different times when canning. Green beans need pressure cooked. Wort does not.
    Water bath canning would be fine. Don't forget to sanitize edge of jar when pouring. I thought about drilling a jar lid for a bubbler but that would compromise the coating on the metal lid.

    And a little hops in there wouldn't hurt. They were added to beer wort for a reason other than flavor originally.
     
  8. jmcnamara

    jmcnamara Well-Known Member

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  9. Ozarks Mountain Brew

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    if the jar is sanitized and as long as the lid seals its fine how ever you do it, it should pop though to seal properly
     
  10. Head First

    Head First Well-Known Member

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    Good point. I stand corrected. I have been around canning since I was a wee lad and I assumed wort would fall in the same category ph as jams and jellies. As with your first example it can be done, but with some chance. Botulism does not give you a second chance(more potent than nerve gas?). We bring ours up to 15# in the pressure cooker then flame out and let it cool and depressurize slowly the same as salsa or tomato sauce. Just simpler for us. We can a lot. I don't think wort is low enough in ph for water bath canning. Next batch I am going to check the ph of the wort after the boil, wondering if it changes the ph any. Any reason is a good reason to brew another batch, right?
     
  11. jmcnamara

    jmcnamara Well-Known Member

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    Too true!

    I did see in one of those articles when i read it closer (after I posted of course :roll: ) that they said the water bath would work. but like you said, i'm not taking the chance with something like nerve gas
    i didn't boil before doing the pressure cooker, so that might be where difference is coming from
     
  12. Ozarks Mountain Brew

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    the boiling is mainly to sterilize the jar and lid, that should be done any way but the wort will need to eventually be boiled so why not do it as your canning
     
  13. wolfie7873

    wolfie7873 Member

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    I would do the boil of wort in an open pot for two reasons: 1) I don't own a pressure cooker, and 2) eliminate the hot break material since this is for starters which won't be subsequently boiled.

    As for the discussion of the necessity of a pressure cooker:

    I've done tomato sauce in water baths with no ill effects. If you've sterilized the glass and boiled the contents, the chance for infection is practically nil.

    The reason you pressure cook green beans (my fault for using them as an example) is that you're *cooking* them in the jar. The jam/jelly/tomato sauce/wort examples have all been boiled and are already sterile - no risk of botulism.
     
  14. bilhelm96

    bilhelm96 Member

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    The risk of saving wort by canning is infecting the canned wort with botulism spores, same as in canning fruit, etc. To kill the spores you need an acidic wort (lower than 5 pH) or cook in a pressure cooker to get a higher temperature. It doesn't matter if the wort is pre-boiled before canning. Here is a good link on the topic:

    http://www.themadfermentationist.com/20 ... -wort.html

    Personally, I would freeze the wort to save it and not have the risk.
     
  15. Head First

    Head First Well-Known Member

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    Clostridium Botalinum spores can survive in 212degree boiling water. With the correct ph and temperature can multiply and give off their Botulinum Toxin. To kill them it takes 240 degrees. Ok there are my big words for the day. Time to brew that big spring IPA with a big pile of Homegrown Centennial.
     
  16. wolfie7873

    wolfie7873 Member

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    I did not know that. Thanks for the heads up.
     

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