The Perfect Home Brew Recipe If You Just Found Out You’re Pregnant
If you just found out that you’re carrying a little baby inside you for the next nine months, you’re likely feeling an overwhelming number of emotions. If this is your first child, you’re probably going on a roller coaster between incredibly excited to unbelievably skeptical. How is it possible for a human to completely grow inside my body? Oh my gosh! I really get to have a baby. Do I really have to stop drinking beer now?
Mothers who are pregnant again already know what to expect throughout pregnancy, but that doesn’t always make it an easy nine months. Between the strict diet (yet a growing appetite) and your toes disappearing beneath you, pregnancy is a life-changing phenomenon.
It’s well known and respected in our community to not drink alcohol during pregnancy. While there are some exceptions to the rule, such as women are allowed to occasionally drink red wine, one way to fight the urge to have a cold brew is to start a long home brewing recipe to keep you busy and still connected to your favourite beverage, even when you can’t drink it.
One recipe we’ve stumbled upon through our days is a Basic Homebrewed Lambic Recipe by Beer & Wine Journal contributor Chris Colby. It’s a sour beer that can be used as a base for a fruit lambic, in a gueuze, or on its own. Conveniently, it takes nine months to brew properly, giving you just enough to keep you busy and then it’ll be ready to enjoy during an after-birth celebration!
Lambic-Style Sour Ale
Yield: 5 gallons Described by the author himself as a beer that may have some funk but is likely to be a mostly clean sour, this ale has the potential to condition and improve for years.
Beer Brewing Ingredients:
- Water - filtered with a mineral content similar to brewing amber beer or pale ale
- 3 lb. 14 oz Belgian pale malt or Pilsner malt
- 1 lb. wheat malt (white)
- 1 lb. 2 oz. flaked wheat or torrefied wheat
- 12 oz. dried light malt extract
- 1.75 lbs. dried wheat malt extract
- 0.75 oz. Saaz hops (fresh) OR 1.5 oz. Saaz hops (aged 1 year) OR 3 oz. Saaz hops (aged 2 years) OR 4 oz. Saaz hops (aged 3 years)
- Wyeast 1056, White Labs WLP001, Fermentis Safale US-05, OR another natural yeast strain
- 1 qt. yeast starter
- Wyeast 3728, White Labs WLP655, OR other sour blend of your choice
- ½ tsp. yeast nutrients
- Two to three days ahead of time, make the yeast starter for the Wyeast 1056, White Labs WLP001, Fermentis Safale US-05, OR another natural yeast strain of your choice.
- Add the raw wheat and crushed malts to a nylon steeping bag.
- Heat 8.9 qts of water in a brew pot to 72 degrees Celsius.
- At 66 degrees Celsius, mash the grains in the brew pot for 45 minutes. Stir occasionally and maintain the heat.
- While the grains are mashing, heat 9 qts. of sparge water to 90 degrees Celsius. Recirculate the wort through the grain bed. Then, run off and sparge with the 90-degree water.
- Depending on how much you can boil, collect up to 4 gallons of wort. Boil wort for 90 minutes, adding hops after 30 minutes. Don’t let the volume in the brew pot drop below 3 gallons. If necessary, add boiling water to the top.
- After the mash time has passed 45 minutes, increase the heat to 76 degrees Celsius. Then, transfer the mash to the 3-gallon beverage cooler.
- After the 90 minutes passes for the wort, shut off the heat and stir in the dried malt extract. The temperature should still be higher than 76 degrees Celsius. If not, heat it again until it stays at this level temperature in order to sanitize the malt extract addition.
- Cool the wort to 20 degrees Celsius and then transfer it to a bucket fermenter. Top off the bucket with 5 gallons of filtered tap water and aerate the wort well.
- Pitch the ale yeast from the yeast starter and ferment at 20 degrees Celsius.
- When the wort reaches its peak of fermentation, high krausen, add the wild yeast and bacteria.
- Now’s the part where you get to wait nine months for the beer to condition. Let it set at ale fermentation temperatures the entire time.
- It is not recommended to rack the beer to a secondary fermenter.
- If your beer is set to condition through summer, it is okay to let the temperature rise, but it should not exceed 26 degrees Celsius.
- Keep up with your brew by checking the fermenter every other month to make sure the water in the airlock does not evaporate.
- When given enough time to condition, the final gravity of the beer may be as low as 1.004.
- A pellicle, or thin membrane, will likely form on top of the beer throughout the conditioning process, but it will sink to the bottom of the fermenter toward the end.
Chris Colby goes into further detail with a few twists on this recipe to use all-grain or fruit lambics. Check out the post to read more from him.
We wish you well during your pregnancy and hope this recipe is the only thing sour about it!