4 Key Ingredients in Home Brewed Beer

Like any recipe, the key to brewing good beer is quality ingredients. There are four main ingredients in any beer brew and hundreds of specialty variations of most of the main ingredients. The main items in every beer are:

1. Yeast.

Yeast comes in two forms, liquid and dry.

Dry yeast, also known as active yeast, must be kept dry. Any moisture will affect the brewing and fermentation process. Dry yeast is a living organism that multiplies, eats sugar, and produces alcohol and carbon dioxide as waste products. Most dry yeast is stamped with a freshness date so you can tell if it is fresh or has been sitting around for months. The expiration date on the yeast will be several months long, but it is best to use the yeast as soon as possible for the best tasting home made beer.

Commercial brewers use liquid yeast. Liquid yeast is very high quality yeast. It can also be matched much more precisely to the type of beer you are making. Liquid yeast comes in larger quantities so before you invest make sure you like your recipe or a variation.

2. Water.

Tap water is all you need as long as it has good taste. If your water tastes bad pre-boil it. Bring it to a boil and let it cool. You can also try filtering the water, but will not want to use distilled water.

3. Malt Extract.

Like yeast, malt extract comes in both liquid and dry forms. The dry form is a powder. Malt extract will make your brewing process much easier and give you a better product.

Malt extract comes in hopped and unhopped versions. Malt will give color, taste and body to the beer and generally provides the grain flavor. If your malt extract does not give you the taste you want, try a small quantity of specialty malt until the flavor is just right.

4. Hops.

Hops are the sugar in your brew.. They add sweetness to the beer. They also add the herbal taste and smell. Oddly enough, hops also provide bitterness to your beer. The two different types of hops provide either aroma or bitter qualities.

In most cases bittering hops are added at the beginning of the recipe while aroma hops generally are not added until after the boil.

As with most recipes these 4 key ingredients provide the backbone and structure to your beer. What you add to them is the key to making great beer that will make you the most loved friend in your circle.

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About The Author, Josie Olson
Josie Olson brews beer in her own kitchen. To learn secrets of brewing and get 100s of recipes visit Home Beer Brewing. When not brewing Josie spends her time planning beach weddings. Join her at Beach Wedding or search for property with her at Australia Real Estate