Raw Wheat

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Raw Wheat

Postby Legman » Sun Jan 13, 2008 5:54 am

I recently aquired several 5 gallon buckets of (assumed) raw wheat and I was thinking about using this in a recipe. Can anyone tell me if I need to do anything to this wheat before I use it in a batch??? I wasn't sure if it could be used since it's not malted. Any thoughts? Roast it maybe???
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cereal mash

Postby slothrob » Sun Jan 13, 2008 8:14 pm

If you want to use this and you really think it's unmalted, then a cereal mash should be enough.
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"Cereal mash"; could you explain a bit

Postby billvelek » Mon Jan 14, 2008 2:25 am

When I read your answer, I googled "cereal mash" and it led me to this site -- http://www.ingermann.com/cerealmash.html -- among others. But that confuses me a bit because it talks aboutg mashing corn or rice with barley malt, and then apparently AFTER the cereal mash, gelatinizing it, and then mashing it again. What is the purpose in following that procedure?

For instance, I have brewed a number of batches of beer using rice as an adjunct, but I haven't done a "cereal" mash. Instead, I have boiled the rice in part of my strike water, strained it out and added it to my grist, and then combined the 'rice' water (which no doubt has some starch in it) with other strike water to adjust for the correct strike water temperature, and then mashed as usual. Is that procedure inferior to a "cereal" mash, and if so ... why?

Thanks.

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cereal mash

Postby slothrob » Mon Jan 14, 2008 10:17 am

When gelatinizing raw grain there is the tendency for the starches to get trapped (on a molecular scale) with water and form a sort of glue (think of a bowl of cold oatmeal). This makes these starches poorly available to the mash. By performing a partial starch digestion while raising the grain to gelatinization temperature, the starches (amylopectin) are partially broken down by amylases in the malt and this glue formation is prevented. The grain is then boiled to complete gelatinization. This doesn't require a long "mash" step, I think 15'-20' should be plenty, as you aren't looking for complete conversion at this step. Only about 10-30% of the grain needs to be malt in the cereal mash.

If you use converted rice, or flaked rice of course, I don't think you need to worry about doing a cereal mash. Corn meal and oatmeal (not flaked or "instant") definately need the cereal mash or you'll get goop and poor conversion. I've never tried raw rice, do you get complete conversion and good efficiency with your method? I suspect raw wheat will need a cereal mash.
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raw wheat

Postby slothrob » Mon Jan 14, 2008 12:39 pm

After a little more research, it appears that this is a continuing debate among brewers.

Wheat has a reletively low gelatinization temperature, so it can theoretically be added directly to the mash. When using raw wheat, though, you may want to at least use a
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Re: cereal mash

Postby billvelek » Mon Jan 14, 2008 7:56 pm

slothrob wrote:When gelatinizing raw grain there is the tendency for the starches to get trapped (on a molecular scale) with water and form a sort of glue (think of a bowl of cold oatmeal). This makes these starches poorly available to the mash. By performing a partial starch digestion while raising the grain to gelatinization temperature, the starches (amylopectin) are partially broken down by amylases in the malt and this glue formation is prevented. The grain is then boiled to complete gelatinization.

That's what's confusing me a bit; I thought that you needed gelatinization of the starches before the enzymes can work, so I'm having difficulty understanding what the enzymes are doing if nothing has been gelatinized yet. Maybe they're working on gluten or something else to help stop the 'glue' from forming.
snip ... If you use converted rice, or flaked rice of course, I don't think you need to worry about doing a cereal mash. Corn meal and oatmeal (not flaked or "instant") definately need the cereal mash or you'll get goop and poor conversion. I've never tried raw rice, do you get complete conversion and good efficiency with your method? I suspect raw wheat will need a cereal mash.
I use RAW 'polished' rice (no hull) -- not minute rice or anything else that has been converted or flaked in any way. I also don't use very much -- maybe just 10 to 15 percent. I've only experimented with it a few times, but I appeared to get complete conversion as far as I could tell (I didn't do an iodine test, so I can't say positively, but the gravity readings indicated that I probably had substantial if not complete conversion).

My method was just my own idea or else something I read so long ago that I can't remember even reading about it, but I figured it would be absolutely impossible for water and ezymes to penetrate, let alone convert, whole grain raw rice unless it was first softened up (presumeably gelatinized). The first thing I do on brew day it start my HLT and bring it to a boil, even if I don't usually use it at that temp, because I can use a smaller pot for an HLT and blend hot water from the faucet with boiling water from the HLT to get a lot of water at the needed temp. Anyway, I digress. Since I'm boiling water anyway, I'll dump something like one pound of raw rice in 5 gallons of water, and it can be boiled well before adding it to the mash tun. The extreme amount of water to rice ratio keeps it more like a soup than a thick porridge, so it doesn't get all gummed together. When the rice is completely soft to the point that the grains are actually splitting open (what most people would probably consider over-cooked, but not 'burnt', if you know what I mean), then I dump the pot through a collander/strainer into another pot, dump the strainer of rice on top of my grist, then measure and adjust my strike water, dump it into the tun and use my paddle to dough-in, which mixes the cooked rice into the barley. No problems with stuck sparges with my monster bazooka, and I've never seen any remnants of any rice when I've dumped my grain bed. I usually stir a couple of times during the mash, too. I'm pretty sure that they've just completely dissolved during the mash to the point that they are just leaving perhaps some unrecognizable protein behind. One problem with my approach is that I haven't found a way to get BTP to allow for the hot rice, so my mash temps are too high but I'll usually shave a little off of the strick water (hit or miss, so far). Water volume is likely to be affected, too, but for the amount of water absorted by a pound of rice, it hasn't showed up as a significant problem.

I have never used corn meal or grits or raw wheat as an adjunct, but don't know why the same method would not work. Of course, it's probably just as easy to do a cereal mash; the only reason I did it my way is because I hadn't learned about a cereal mash. Sounds to me like they both might work just as well, so maybe a person should just do whichever is the easiest.

By the way, I have experimented with plain white bread/baking flour (like maybe 10% of the grain bill), which was added straight to my grist without any pre-gelatinization, and as far as I could tell (figuring from my O.G. rather than an iodine test), I was getting substantial if not complete conversion. The flour was mixed well with the grist prior to adding strike water; this minimized the chances of any dough balls. The mash temps of about 156F for about an hour appeared to be plenty enough to both gelatinize and then convert the flour. As I understand it, wheat is supposed to gelatinize in the range of 126F(52C) to 147F(64C) [I don't know why there is a 'range' ... perhaps the type of wheat makes a difference]. Again, no stuck sparge problems, either.

Regarding your other suggestions about a
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Re: cereal mash

Postby slothrob » Tue Jan 15, 2008 5:27 pm

billvelek wrote:I thought that you needed gelatinization of the starches before the enzymes can work, so I'm having difficulty understanding what the enzymes are doing if nothing has been gelatinized yet.

I believe this works because the amylopectin subgroup of starch molecules is water soluble and more easily broken down by enzymes than amylose.

[quote="billvelek"I'll dump something like one pound of raw rice in 5 gallons of water, and it can be boiled well before adding it to the mash tun. The extreme amount of water to rice ratio keeps it more like a soup than a thick porridge, so it doesn't get all gummed together....
I have never used corn meal or grits or raw wheat as an adjunct, but don't know why the same method would not work. Of course, it's probably just as easy to do a cereal mash; the only reason I did it my way is because I hadn't learned about a cereal mash. Sounds to me like they both might work just as well, so maybe a person should just do whichever is the easiest.[/quote]
So, it seemes you stumbled on the other way to do this. The cereal mash was originally designed to avoid the large volume of water required to prevent the glue formation. You need around 10-20 times the water, which is a lot less of a problem if you're only gelatinizing 1#.

[quote="billvelek"]Regarding your other suggestions about a
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