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About five years ago I bought my husband a home brew kit. At the time, we were living in hot and steamy Austin, TX, and beer was a fan favorite at most social events. Pouring a “cold one” was a no-brainer.
But after moving to the Pacific Northwest, where the temperatures are a bit more unpredictable, beer doesn’t make as many appearances. Nevertheless, since we already had the equipment we decided it was high time we learned how to make it.
And this project, if I’m being honest, was a lot of work. In fact, all of the processing procedures reminded me quite a bit of home canning. Cleaning and disinfecting our equipment, laying out the ingredients, monitoring processing times…yep, a lot like canning indeed. (Although canning doesn’t involve aromas akin to boiling a pot of Grape Nut Flakes.)
It also brought back memories of my dietetic internship days, which involved a short rotation in a state prison. I’m quite certain the inmates didn’t follow such rigorous protocols while fermenting their bootleg brews. But we followed the instructions nonetheless.
Brewing turned out to be a lot of fun. It always amazes me what a group of living things can accomplish when they get together. Yeast is one interesting fungus.
While brewing beer certainly isn’t for everyone–such as those who avoid alcohol for health or religious reasons–it does require careful time and attention. Much like sugary baked treats, we tend to eat less of them when we have to exert a lot of effort to get them in the first place. (Who has time to bake every day!?!)
Now, we shall wait for the magic to happen. As we speak, I can hear the gurgly, bubbly action happening in the next room and I’m excited to see how it turns out.
(And here’s to hoping this endeavor doesn’t turn out like my dill pickle experiment.)