Open Source Brewing

Open Source Homebrewing – Redskin beer recipe

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When I get an idea to make a homebrew I check the web to see if anyone has made anything similar and posted a recipe. And I get frustrated when I find someone talking about a beer but not really posting any recipe.

Lately, I realised that’s what I do – write about a homebrew I’m making but not include a recipe for it. Which is a tad hypocritical of me.

So I decided to address that oversight with an occasional segment called Open Source Homebrewing. That’s where I’ll post a recipe I’ve written about or made, just in case it helps someone else.

The beer I decided to feature first was one that I spent ages trying to find a recipe for – the Redskin beer. It wasn’t until I bumped into a guy at a homebrew club meeting who had made one that I got the guidance I was looking for.

So here it is, my recipe for Native American – a wheat beer made with loads of Redskins (Incidentally, for overseas readers, this is what Redskins are.)

Ingredients
Two cans of Morgans Wheat liquid malt extract
250g Carapils
100 Redskins (about five 220g packs)
35g Cascade
Yeast: two packs of Mangrove Jack’s M20 Bavarian

Steps
1) Mash Carapils in 1 litre of water for 40 minutes at 70 degrees Celsius
2) Top up to seven litres and start a 45-minute boil, throwing in the Cascade at the start.
3) The Redskins go into the wort gradually, while stirring, to ensure they melt.

The starting gravity was 1050 and it ended up at 1024. Which I calculated meant I had a beer about 4 per cent ABV.

Observations
• Unwrapping 100 Redskins is a frigging pain in the butt.

• A second sachet of yeast was needed during fermentation as I suspect all that extra sugar from the Redskins overwhelmed the yeast. Perhaps throwing in both sachets at the start would overcome that.

• Don’t throw all 100 Redskins in at once. You don’t want them to clump together and scorch the brew pot.

• Throwing them in gradually while stirring works fine – and the Redskins dissolve way faster than I had expected.

• If you could get it to end lower (higher?) than 1024 that would be good. Drinking the finished product I still found it a little too sweet.

• I spend some time deliberating which style to use as a base for this beer, finally opting for a wheat beer over a pale ale. If you’ve got the time and the cellaring space, I reckon a tripel might work well with the sweetness from the Redskins.

• A Google search for “Redskin beer” returns my blog post about making Native American as the first hit. And another post of mine about Moon Dog’s Redskin beer is second. Seems this blog has cornered the Redskin beer market online

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