Basic Ale Recipe
This is the generic recipe for making a delicious ale. You can try different specially grains, malt extracts, hops, and yeasts to suit your own taste. This recipe is for a three gallon batch. Multiply by 5/3 for a five gallon batch.
- Specialty Malts: Use 1 to 1.5 lbs of malted barley. Lighter barleys make lighter ales.
- 3 to 4 lbs Dry Malt Extract (DME). I usually use 3 pound for a lighter bodied beer. Use Pilsen or Light DME.
- Hops: Use 0.5 to 1 oz. hops @ 60 minutes and 0.5 to 0.75 oz. hops @ 5 minutes. For a flavor not too strong and bitter (i.e. not an IPA), I like Fuggle and Hallertaur hops.
- Yeast: White Labs Yeast Cream Ale Blend, California Ale, and Kolsch are my favorites.
Soak the specialty malts in a mesh bag in the water for at least 40 minutes, not letting the temperature raise above 160 degrees F. Pull out the mesh bag and give the barley remains to the chickens or compost them. Add the DME one cup at a time and stir, letting it fully dissolve before adding the next cup. Bring the wort to a boil being very careful to avoid spill-over. Keep a cup of cold water next to the pot that you can dump in if it starts to boil over. This works better than turning off the stove.
Once a rolling boil is reached and the foam is down, add the 60 minute hops and look at the clock. It should boil for 60 more minutes. After 55 minutes, add the remaining hops. Let boil 5 more minutes and then remove from stove. Stick the pot in cold water and start the cooling process. Once the wort is adequately cool, pour into the carboy, allowing for aeration with your pour. Add the yeast. Most yeast comes for 5 gallon batches but you can either add it all or add 3/5th of it. I haven’t found any difference. Put on the air lock, cover the carboy to keep out the light (I use an old cotton sweater), and put the carboy in a place where the temperature matches the yeast you are using.