Recipe courtesy of Alton Brown

Good Brew

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  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 2 hr 49 min
  • Active: 1 hr
  • Yield: 5 gallons
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Special equipment:
1 large pot that will hold at least 3 gallons water Probe thermometer Colander Metal mesh strainer Cheesecloth 2 (7-gallon) fermenters, 1 with a spigot and 1 with an air lock 6 feet of plastic tubing that will fit the spigot Bottling tube 2 cases plus a couple of bottles of 20-ounce Grolsh style bottles Bottle brush Long metal spoon Unscented household bleach
  1. It is very important to sterilize all equipment that will come into contact with the beer. Also the hops, yeast, and Irish moss need to be kept refrigerated until use. Begin by sterilizing your equipment that you will use to boil the mash; the pot, metal spoon, probe of the probe thermometer, colander and strainer, including the fermenter. To sterilize everything put 2 ounces of non-scented household bleach and 3 to 4 gallons of water into the fermenter. Place other smaller items in the solution to soak. The items that are too large to fit into the fermenter can be sterilized by pouring the solution in the fermenter into and over these items and then thoroughly rinsing all equipment, including the fermenter. 
  2. After sterilization is complete you can begin brewing beer by adding 2 gallons of spring water as well as the 1/2 pound milled grain to your pot and turn the burner on to medium high. Place the probe thermometer into the pot and set the temperature to 155 degrees, once the liquid reaches 155 degrees set a timer for 30 minutes. In the meantime soak the container of liquid malt extract in warm water; it will aid in removing it from the container. After the grain has cooked for 30 minutes add 1 gallon of water and the liquid malt extract and bring to a boil stirring so that the extract does not burn on the bottom until dissolved. The liquid will foam up to the top; when it does this, turn the heat off and let it settle then turn the heat back on and bring to a boil. Let it foam again and turn the heat off, let it settle and turn the heat back on and add the hops. Add 1-ounce of the Cascade hops and 3/4-ounce of Kent goldings hops and boil for 10 minutes. Next add 1/2 teaspoon Irish moss and boil for 5 minutes. Now add the last hops, 1-ounce Kent Goldings, cover, turn off the heat and let sit for 5 minutes. Meanwhile put the last gallon and 1 pint of water as well as the bag of ice into the fermenter and fit the top with the colander and mesh strainer. Strain the mash into the fementer and allow to cool to 80 degrees before pitching the yeast. Once the mash is cooled to 80 degrees it is now safe to add the yeast, shake the vial until the liquid is well mixed and then add to the fermenter. Cover with the lid and put airlock in place. Put into cool dark place to ferment for 7 to 10 days. 
  3. Attach the siphon on the spigot and transfer beer from one fermenter to the second one. Add the sugar/water mixture. Bottle using the wand. Cap and place into a cool dark place for another 10 to 14 days. 
  4. Open and enjoy.

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