Springtime spices

Discussion in 'Recipes for Feedback' started by oliver, Feb 8, 2016.

  1. oliver

    oliver Well-Known Member

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    Happy Carnival. I've waited too long, but next year i'm planning a Mardi Gras springtime ale, as i've been inspired by the local beers... I think i've settled on a Saison, i'm not really sure what a Mardi gras beer really is, except that Mardi Gras is a springtime thing, . SO, i've been looking around at springtime spiciness for this. And i've even looked at Sam Adams Cold Snap, which some one posted the list of those spices...

    (Orange Peel, Lemon Peel, Coriander, Grains of Paradise, Dried Plum, Vanilla, Tamarind, Hibiscus, Rose Hips, Star Anise) That might be a little much for a small 2.25 gal batch, and i'm not even sure how much and in what forms to use all those things.... So, input?? I guess my goals are a really drinkable, widely appealing, session springtime beer.

    3gal --> 2.25gal

    2.0lbs Belgian Pale
    2.0lbs Belgian Wheat
    0.5lbs Belgian Unmalted Wheat

    0.25 oz Saaz 20 min
    0.25 oz Citra 15 min
    0.25 oz Saaz 10 min
    0.25 oz Citra 5 min
    0.50 oz Citra Dry Hop 14 days

    Wyeast French Saison 3711
     
  2. jmcnamara

    jmcnamara Well-Known Member

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    i did a wit as one of our wedding beers last year, and used 11 g of coriander in a 5.5 gallon batch. sauteed it a little before running them through the food processor. smelled delicious.
    for the same batch, we used 1.5 oz of a mix of grapefruit and orange zest. i wanted to use curacao or other specific type of orange, but couldn't find it. i read this is a good approximation.
    the beer came out with a huge citrus smell and taste.
    i think the saaz and citra you have will give it a good spicy bite and up the citrus factor. i've been meaning to try grains of paradise, but maybe just some regular black pepper would be good? not too exotic, i know
    i've used hibiscus before, and definitely too much, so i'm kinda gun shy on that one.
    for vanilla, i've heard of dropping a bean or two into some sugar for a bit, then using that sugar to prime. would love to try it, but i can't bring myself to spend that much money for such a small amount of spice. same with saffron, radical brewing has a recipe that uses it, but it's a bit out of budget
     
  3. Nosybear

    Nosybear Well-Known Member

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  4. oliver

    oliver Well-Known Member

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    my initial thought was to scrap most of that list, but definitely use fresh grated Orange, Lemon, and Lime peels. Plus some crushed Coriander seeds since i've had those laying around forever. As for the rest, i'm conflicted. I oughta just try out what i've got on hand, and see how it goes.

    Definitely going to get some of that Seville Orange. Probably leave the vanilla behind??? Unless i could use extract and toss it in with the priming sugar? i'm not sure i understand the bean thing? You mean, dilute my normal priming sugar and then toss some beans in for a bit?
     
  5. jmcnamara

    jmcnamara Well-Known Member

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    i'd have to dig up where i found it, but if i recall, you slice the beans longways into a few strips. Then, just bury them in sugar. probably shaking it up once or twice a day wouldn't hurt. then, when you're ready to bottle, just remove the beans and use the sugar as normal. from what i recall, it was 2 or 3 beans and 2 cups of sugar, but i could be very wrong. i'll see if i can find it when i get home.
    if i were to do it, i'd use the vanilla in a separate batch. maybe pour a drop (or whatever would be the right amount) in a few bottles when you cap them.

    also, i highly recommend you get a good zester. the first batch i tried peeling the zest off with a knife and it was goddawful. sooo much easier the second time around with the right tool
     
  6. Nosybear

    Nosybear Well-Known Member

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    Vanilla: Although it's satisfying to use vanilla beans, a good extract will get you the same effect. Don't get the cheap McCormack stuff - it's a solution of synthetic vanilla flavoring with some coloring added. Spice shop vanilla extract will do just fine and save the trouble of doing your own tincture.
     

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