Traditional Bitter

Ingredients:

920g Maris Otter malts
440g Crystal malts
18g East Kent Golding Hops
English Ale Yeast

Cleaning & Sanitising:

Prepare your sanitiser by dissolving 2 teaspoons of powder or dissolving one tablet in 5 litres of water.
Sterilize all equipment including the demijohn, Syphon tubing, airlock, bung, funnel, thermometer and sieve by soaking in the liquid for around 20 minutes.
Try to hold onto this sanitiser solution until the brewing process is complete as you never know when you’ll need it.

Mash:bitter brew

Heat 2.4 litres of water to 71 degrees then add the grain mixture. Stir gently and maintain a temperature of between 62 & 67 degrees for the next hour.
Stir the mixture every 10 minutes until you have reached the 1 hour mark.

Sparge:

With 10 minutes left in the mash, bring Pan 1 up to 77 degrees. At the same time, start heating up another 4 litres of water to around 77 degrees in pan 2.
Place the sieve over pan 3 and start to pour in the grains. Once all the grains have been poured out and the wort has been collected in the pan, place the sieve with all the grain back onto pan 1.
gently and evenly pour the 4.5 litres of water from pan 3 over the grains.

You can pass the wort through the grain a couple of times to capture as much of the sugary liquid as you can.

Boil:

Place the pan containing the wort onto a high heat and bring to a rolling boil. Set a timer for an hour and allow to boil until the time is up.
Pour in 12 g of the East Kent Golding Hops once the boiling starts and pour the rest in towards the end when there are 15 minutes left on the timer.
Take off the heat and allow to cool.

Ensure you have an ice bath prepared somewhere to cool the wort down to around 22 degrees. A bath or a sink will do.

Fermentation:bitter fermenting

Using a funnel, pour the cooled wort into the sanitised demijohn. Allow a little space at the top as fermentation will cause a krausen to form which could overflow.
I use a filtered funnel which catches all the left over hops and debris.

Pour three quarters of the yeast into the demijohn, then half fill the airlock with some of the left over sanitiser. Attach to the bung and push into the top of the demijohn to create a seal.
Store in a cool and dark place at room temperature and monitor.

Bottling:

After around 11 days or when the fermentation has finished, sanitise bottles, caps, and syphon using the same principles as above.

Prime the bottles by adding 1/2 teaspoon of sugar per 500ml or 1/4 teaspoon of sugar per 330ml to them.
Using the syphon, disperse the liquid equally amongst the bottles trying not to disturb the sediment in the bottom of the demijohn.
You can control the flow with a clamp mechanism or if your quick enough place the end from one bottle to the other quickly.

Leave a space at the top of each bottle to allow for fermentation within bottle, cap or close the lid then store in a  cool and dark place at room temperature for around 2 – 3 weeks.

Notes:

Based on some advice I received from S A Brains brewery, I actually only allowed 6 days within the demi-John and bottled as normal.
The resulting beer was clear, crisp and well carbonated.

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