by Anthony Hoch
Every August, everyone begins talking about pumpkin beer. There are several ways to you can get that pumpkin beer flavor--from adding whole pumpkin or simply using the spices to pumpkin-up your homebrew.
For me, pumpkin beer needs to actually taste like beer!
Here are a few tips to make your pumpkin beer the best it can be:
1. Don't do it.
2. Seriously don't.
3. Okay if you must, you can simply avoid the pumpkin all-together. The spices (cinnamon, cloves, coriander, nutmeg) are what you really want.
4. Oh... you really want to use pumpkin... okay then. Get a fresh pumpkin and cube it up. Then roast the cubes in the oven until caramelization begins and they start to brown.
5. Alternatively, you can use Butternut squash. This will be easier to prep and is way better than pumpkin anyway. Just prepare it the same way.
6. You could also use canned pumpkin, just be sure not to use pumpkin pie mix This has loads of sugar and could really throw things out of whack.
7. Spread the canned pumpkin on a cookie sheet and bake it until brown and caramelized.
8. Use about 5lbs of pumpkin in a 5 gallon batch.
9. Adding it in the mash is the easiest way to do it, as adding it into the fermenter will give you tonnes of trube and absorb quite a bit of beer causing your yield to be significantly lower.
10. Use whole cloves. Avoid powdered cloves unless you want it to taste like a hospital.
If you have questions about Pumpkin Beer or any homebrew, just drop PHO a line: [email protected]