After months of making apple cider from store-bought juice, I finally caved and put together an order for my first shipment of brewing supplies. I had been terrified of paying the (minimal and flat) shipping charge for the few little piddly-peddly pieces I needed to start. Now, I was ready to make an order for a few batches.
|Order is in!|
|Cardboard for the Fireplace!|
|Grain steeping bag|
I put the crushed grains in the big muslin sleeve given to me by Lord Stilton (thanks again!) while the water heated up for steeping. The dried yeast is being hydrated and kick-started in a brown sugar and water solution in the jar.
|Beginning the Boil|
For this extract batch, I did a small volume boil to fit in the saucepan on the stove. I did receive two boiling elements along with my plastic fermenter, but I haven't taken the jump to the full-bucket boil yet. That will be down the road. I added part of the liquid malt extract to the saucepan, mixed in as much water as I dared, and brought it to a boil.
|Steeping in the bucket|
|It's not what it looks like...|
|Home Brewing has one rule, and it is unflinchingly rigid|
Of course, I have one self-imposed brewing rule that I absolutely do not break. I cannot be working with homebrew unless I am also enjoying a homebrew. Whatever steps I am taking- mixing, boiling, measuring, bottling, no matter. If I'm working on the hobby, I am enjoying the fruits of my labor. For this reason I almost never brew in the morning...
I poured a tall glass of my last batch of cider, chilled in the freezer.
|Fermenter topped up|
Once fermentation was started up, I moved the fermenter out of the water heater closet to keep it just a bit cooler and slow things down a bit. Check back for the final bottled result after the new year.
Note: With my next brew order, I'll be getting some Star-San sanitizer for easier no-rinse sanitation. I'm also in the market for a nice digital thermometer so I can properly record temperatures in my brewing logbook. I should have brought the hydrometer, bottling wand, auto-siphon, and thermometer with me when I moved.