Parsnip Stout

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moto748

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It's easy! Give it a go!

No mashing required.
No temperature control required.
Simple stove-top recipe.

9 litres water (do measure this fairly exactly, half a litre out is a lot on a small batch)
Pinch calcium chloride
1/4 tsp citric acid
1.5 kg parsnips (typically come in 500 g bags in supermarkets)
350 g medium spraymalt
330 g Demerara sugar (the idea there is 3 batches out of a 1 kg bag)
50 g black malt
50 g chocolate malt
(I started off with 100 g of black, which is fine, but I've got a bit fancy lately and tweaked it. wink... Whatever you have, really)
15 g Target hops
8 g Challenger hops
1/4 Protofloc
1/2 pkt US-05 yeast

Bring the water to a boil. Top and tail the parsnips, and cut them into chunks. put them in your boil-in-a-bag bag, along with the black/choc malt. Bung the spraymalt in the pan (careful, it's messy stuff) and your bag. I make my own bags out of stockinette, so I can dangle the end of the bag over the edge of the pan. From time to time give it a good 'dunk'. It will take a while to bring it back to boiling point.

parsnip2.jpeg

Once it's reached boiling point, replace the lid loosely and adjust the heat to a simmer for 45 mins.

Now for the hops. Lift out the parsnip bag and discard. Bag squeezing not necessary! Bring to the boil. I use 15 g of Target for 45 mins, and 8 g of Challenger for the last ten minutes., I bung the Protofloc fragment in then too. If you haven't got Protofloc, you can do without it. I only use it out of habit, this beer will clear just fine. I put the hops in small muslin bags. You can buy them off ebay for next to nothing. Up the heat a little to a 'rolling boil' Replace the lid. Boil for 35 mins, keeping an eye on it from time to time. Add second hops and Protofloc, and boil for another ten minutes.

Fish the bags of hops out. Put the sugar in the bucket and pour on the wort.

If I bother with any cooling at all, it's putting the bucket in the sink full of cold water. Usually I let it cool naturally overnight. Anyway, when the temp has dropped down to say 22 deg, it's ready for pitching. At this point, take a hydrometer reading. It should be 1042-1043 (with temperature allowance)

I'm sure many yeasts would work, but I use US-05 and it works very well. In the early days I used S-04 and that was much less successful. Anyway, half a packet will do the job. Sprinkle in on, and should be bubbling away 24 hours later.

After 4 or 5 days, when fermentation has slowed, I transfer to demijohns. Divide the beer between two, they should be about two-thirds full. When i transfer, the main thng I'm leaving behind is the scum off the top. I siphon into demi-johns, but then add a few teaspoons-full of the yeast sediment to each one.

At this point, you can even do some dry-hopping. You may feel that's a bit 'lipstick on a pig', up to you...
I dangle a weighted muslin bag with around another 10 g of hops into each demijohn.

dry hop1.jpeg

I dry-hopped this yesterday. It always creates a bit more action, as you can see. If you look closely, you may be able to see the thread clamped by the rubber bung. For reference, this is the small bucket I use. They are only around a fiver or so. Also you can see the sediment settling and the beer clearing. I bottle after another 4-5 days in the demi-johns. Check the FG. I find it generally gets down to around 1009, giving a strength around the 4.5% mark,which I think is ideal. From each batch, I'm getting around 12-13 500 ml bottles. I prime with 2.5 g of sugar per bottle (syrup injection method).

Then, after two or three weeks,

parsnip1.jpeg

To sum up, 45 min simmer, 45 min hop boil, pour onto sugar, cool, pitch.
 
I was trying to avoid the whole mashing thing. There also might be an issue of the physical bulk of it in a small batch stove-top if I included grain too, for me, anyway. I've done small batch AG brews in a similar fashion successfully, but they didn't have 1.5 kg of parsnips in the bag too! You can buy spraymalt in Wilco.

Actually the parsnips have been a bit hard to source lately! Lidl haven't had any for months, Aldi sometimes run out. Tesco do them, though.
 
Have you ever tried roasting the parsnips first to get a sweeter richer flavour?

No. Obviously you mean, dry-roasting? I can't imagine any oil or fat in a beer!

But I'm not sure a sweeter flavour is what I'm looking for anyway. Bur it's an interesting thought.
 
No. Obviously you mean, dry-roasting? I can't imagine any oil or fat in a beer!

But I'm not sure a sweeter flavour is what I'm looking for anyway. Bur it's an interesting thought.
Only saying because I did a pumpkin beer a while ago and you had to roast (no oil) in brown sugar before adding to the boil.
I’m afraid I am not a fan of parsnips unless they are roasted within an inch of their life.
 
Are you able to describe what this beer tastes like? (Or is it just like stout with an underlying parsnip flavour?!) How much impact does the parsnip have?
 
Are you able to describe what this beer tastes like? (Or is it just like stout with an underlying parsnip flavour?!) How much impact does the parsnip have?

Looking at what I said to @moto748 , I thought it was sort of sweet/sour with a coffee bitter aftertaste, which I'm sure doesn't give it the credit it deserves. I really enjoyed it. I wouldn't say the parsnip was the main flavour but that its definitely there in the background.
 
Looking at what I said to @moto748 , I thought it was sort of sweet/sour with a coffee bitter aftertaste, which I'm sure doesn't give it the credit it deserves. I really enjoyed it. I wouldn't say the parsnip was the main flavour but that its definitely there in the background.
Sweet/sour, or sweet/bitter?

Sounds like you're going to brew it. So you must've been impressed. You could definitely do AG, parsnips could be added before or after the grains. During the boil perhaps. You could blend the parsnips maybe, for better extraction? And maybe use less?
 
Well as I say, I thought firstly sweet sour, I think from the parsnips, then a coffee aftertaste which lingers, probably the black and choc malt.

I'll brew it sometime, theres a lot to brew between now and then though! Like you say, I think I'll tweak the recipe to all grain.
 
Well as I say, I thought firstly sweet sour, I think from the parsnips, then a coffee aftertaste which lingers, probably the black and choc malt.

I'll brew it sometime, theres a lot to brew between now and then though! Like you say, I think I'll tweak the recipe to all grain.
OK cool, thanks, I'm now wondering how it manages to be sour.
 
I don't think sour would be the word I'd choose, but I'll leave the descriptions to those of you with more knowledge than me! 😀

The idea was to produce something pleasantly drinkable from (largely) household products, without the need for temperature control and mashing, which might encourage some, especially newcomers maybe, to take the plunge.. Conversely, if I'm doing a 'proper' brew, I wouldn't be putting parsnips in it. Well, that's how I see it! ☺

Put it this way: I do make this regularly; I've made about half a dozen stove-top batches in the last few months.
 
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Nobody going to have a go, then? I've made better stouts, but it's still my 'house stout', and is a decent pint easily made. It doesn't really taste of parsnips. 2.5-265 g of priming sugar per bottle, and I reckon it's spot-on. I'm drinking one now.
 
Nobody going to have a go, then? I've made better stouts, but it's still my 'house stout', and is a decent pint easily made. It doesn't really taste of parsnips. 2.5-265 g of priming sugar per bottle, and I reckon it's spot-on. I'm drinking one now.
This has been added to my long list of beers I want to make. The mango IPA is also high up on this list..too many choices and not enough brewing space (or time to drink) 😂😂
 
Even after a fair few iterations, I am still refining this recipe! Like a few brews, I think, I have gradually increased hops, and now I've reached the point where I need to back off a little. Either cut the Target back by a couple of grams (would a couple of grams make much difference? In such a small batch, I think so), or lose the dry-hopping, or both. And I'd cut the priming down to 2.4 g/bottle, which seems perfect. I need to taste the next batch along to be sure.

I want to make the best silk purse I can!
 
On those hops, I've reduced the initial hops from 15+8 to 12+7, and dry-hopped 7 g of Fuggles per demi-john. And the priming down to 2.2 g/bottle.
 
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