Malting Corn

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Malting Corn

Postby trthskr4 » Fri Apr 18, 2008 2:34 am

I couldn't find a thread on malting corn and thought I might "help" by posting my process and results. I use corn that I buy from local suppliers sold specifically for wildlife feed, not from chain stores because you never know what's in some of the bags. I realize some may have no choice and in that case you do what you must. I use 2, 5 gallon buckets. One I drill about 25 holes with a 1/4" drill bit into the bottom around the outer ring and about 10 around the inner ring (turn you a bucket upside down and you will see). I put the bucket with the holes in it inside the bucket with no holes and fill approximately 2/3 full of corn. Next I add tap water to the corn until just below the top of the bucket, the corn will absorb alot of water. I leave that for a day or 2 at preferably around 70-75*F. Keep an eye on the corn that it doesn't soak up so much water that there are kernels uncovered on top. After the corn swells to about the top of the bucket (again, a day or 2) I simply pull the inner bucket out of the other slowly allowing the water to drain. I put this bucket on a terry cloth towel which allows the water that drains out while sitting to be absorbed by it keeping the bottom of the bucket moist through the process. I try to keep this bucket at temps between 65-70*F for around 5-7 days and every other day I pour a 1/4 to 1/2 cup of water over the top. When the sprouts are all between 1-1/2 - 2" long I dump it out onto a piece of roofing tin I keep and spread out over the entire length of it, I also place a 2x4 on each side of the tin to make a "trough" and I put it on saw horses, this just makes it easier to pour out into a bag to carry to the mill. I set up an oscillating fan on high to blow back and forth accross the corn until it all dries back out then grind and place in airtight containers. I get a germination of about 95% or better every time.

I hope this helps anyone interested in malting their own corn.
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Re: Malting Corn

Postby theholymackerel » Fri Apr 18, 2008 10:03 am

trthskr4 wrote:I couldn't find a thread on malting corn ...


I did a search and got 89 "hits" for "malting corn".
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Re: Malting Corn

Postby trthskr4 » Fri Apr 18, 2008 11:50 am

theholymackerel wrote:
trthskr4 wrote:I couldn't find a thread on malting corn ...


I did a search and got 89 "hits" for "malting corn".



I know there are some references to malting corn in here but I didn't find anything like a tutorial. Woke up at 3am and had nothing else to do. That's the one thing I am good at and thought it might help. I did do a search and got 7 or 8 hits but they had nothing to do with the process of malting. I just did the search again and got 91 hits but they were just posts that contained the words "malting" and "corn".
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Re: Malting Corn

Postby punkin » Fri Apr 18, 2008 1:02 pm

trthskr4 wrote:
theholymackerel wrote:
trthskr4 wrote:I couldn't find a thread on malting corn ...


I did a search and got 89 "hits" for "malting corn".



I know there are some references to malting corn in here but I didn't find anything like a tutorial. Woke up at 3am and had nothing else to do. That's the one thing I am good at and thought it might help. I did do a search and got 7 or 8 hits but they had nothing to do with the process of malting. I just did the search again and got 91 hits but they were just posts that contained the words "malting" and "corn".



I appreciate the effort trthskr4, you've made it sound simple enough for me to try. And i will. Thanks for that.

Tell HM (short for CrankyOldBastard) to bang it up his coit if he don't appreciate it :lol:





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Re: Malting Corn

Postby trthskr4 » Fri Apr 18, 2008 1:31 pm

Thanks and you're welcome Punkin. THM ought to be banned from reading us youngun's threads. He's kinda condescending (no offense meant Holy Makeril) and discouraging to some of us. I understand posting a question that's been answered a hundred thousand times and gettin taken out to tha wood shed. By God I can grow an acre of corn with a little water and two dustings off your tv.
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Re: Malting Corn

Postby Dnderhead » Sat Apr 19, 2008 4:46 am

I do something similar for small batches of malt but I drill 10-12- 1/8 holes in bottom an fill bucket with water stir grain then let water drain out
do this about 2 times a day (keep top covered with cloth)
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Re: Malting Corn

Postby Tater » Sat Apr 19, 2008 5:49 am

trthskr4 method you posted looks similar to one on parent site.---Jack gives his method for malting ...

Malting is easy -
o Soak the grain for 72 hours (change the water every 24 hours) while soaking put an aquarium pump/air stone in the water so it bubbles through the bed of grain (it should have a good few inches of water over the top of the grain).
o After the soak, put the grain in a bucket with hundreds of little holes drilled in it, then sit this bucket into another bucket that has a couple of inches of water in it. Put the air stone from the air pump into the bottom bucket so it bubbles up through the water- leave the lid on loose so the air can be exchanged by the pump. The air pump is scrubbing out the CO2, preventing mold growth, and preventing heat buildup.
o Once the rootlets are roughly the length of the grain (for barley- for corn, wait until the root is about 2" long), dry the malt- this must be done in the dark - a food dehydrator is best.
o You can also use the malt without drying it- this is called "green malt" just make sure the original weight of the grain is recorded to make recipe formulation easy.

It's a pain to get it to grind when it's wet, though. It will have a higher enzymatic activity - but not noticeably. The real problem is that green malt (if you are making a malt whiskey) can give a funny flavor to the spirit. If the wet malt is only used for it's enzymatic ability (ie. Bourbon) then it won't make a difference - use it wet in that case.

Drying is complete when the malt weighs the same as the original amount of grain you started with.

This system (using 5 gallon buckets) works best with 5 pound amounts at a time (starting weight).
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Re: Malting Corn

Postby punkin » Sat Apr 19, 2008 12:23 pm

I think i got ya Tater. Are you saying that if i was to do a grain bill, say 60% malt corn/40% malt barley for an easy example, that i could use the corn malt green, wet and uncracked, and it won't suffer in flavour or conversion. But if i was to try to use 50% cracked dry corn and 50% malt corn, i'd have to dry and crack the corn to make the most of it's enzymes and to avoid a peculiar taste?
Appreciate the discussion with real people too. Some of the stuff on the parent site can be contradictory and some of the views on there are just not consistent with the common agreement here.








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Re: Malting Corn

Postby Tater » Sat Apr 19, 2008 12:51 pm

Ya could use both green for that matter but green malts will have a stronger taste.Ya wont notice it as much if at all if your using the green malt to convert other grain.But if mashing using all malted grain I would recommend maybe chewing a bit of the green malt and some dry malt to see the difference in taste. I would chop or grind dry or green malts before using.
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Re: Malting Corn

Postby punkin » Sat Apr 19, 2008 1:27 pm

tater wrote:Ya could use both green for that matter but green malts will have a stronger taste.Ya wont notice it as much if at all if your using the green malt to convert other grain.But if mashing using all malted grain I would recommend maybe chewing a bit of the green malt and some dry malt to see the difference in taste. I would chop or grind dry or green malts before using.



Thanks mate.
Would it be easier, d'ya think, to do green corn malt in the crankenstein or the food processor?
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Re: Malting Corn

Postby Tater » Sat Apr 19, 2008 1:55 pm

Food processor with very course chop.
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Re: Malting Corn

Postby Dnderhead » Sat Apr 19, 2008 2:01 pm

I fiend green malt has green grain flavor as dried has toasty malt flavor I do not thank crankenstein will work on green malt because it will not "crack"
only squash some use garbage disposal I would try food processor
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Re: Malting Corn

Postby Tater » Sat Apr 19, 2008 2:07 pm

Dnderhead wrote:I fiend green malt has green grain flavor as dried has toasty malt flavor I do not thank crankenstein will work on green malt because it will not "crack"
only squash some use garbage disposal I would try food processor
One of them thangs ya gotta taste yourself to see the difference ain't it dnder.
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Re: Malting Corn

Postby Dnderhead » Sat Apr 19, 2008 4:59 pm

yes there's a hundred different recipes and a hundred different ways to do it all you can do try and see what is close to what you like and tweak it
to suite you as bourbon hast to be 50%+ corn the rest can be wheat, barley, rye, oats- and can be plain or malted, dark or light, or green or any combination of these
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Re: Malting Corn

Postby Fourway » Mon Apr 21, 2008 3:23 pm

I'm pretty sure that there are no commercial distilleries doing any kind of green malt at all.
Part of the attraction of doing a green malt is that it gives a set of flavors you can't get any other way and that you won't find in any commercial product.
The other nice thing about green malt is that it mashes easier than dry grain.
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Re: Malting Corn

Postby Hack » Wed Dec 03, 2008 12:53 am

'Bump'

Now that I've got my rig worked out to where I'm happy with it and seem to be getting the hang of fermenting and making cuts I'm looking to get back at malting corn. This seemed to be like a pretty good thread on the process so I thought I'd give it a bump.

Are there any pointers anyone would like to add? Anything those that have posted here have learned since they last posted here?
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Re: Malting Corn

Postby The Tippler » Wed Dec 03, 2008 2:41 am

Hack , I have had real success in sprouting corn. Wash it off then soak it for 2/3 hours in clean water. Get a wet wheat bag and lay it on a sheet of tin, pour the kernels onto it about 2kernels thick and then put another wet wheat bag over the kernels. Its in the sun ,so morning and night pour enough water onto the top bag to get the moisture up. Moist not wet. I have done 4kgs at a time and it sprouts so well. You have to shave it off the bottom bag though the roots grow through it if you leave it too long...................Cheers.............Tippler
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Re: Malting Corn

Postby Usge » Wed Dec 03, 2008 11:09 am

Although I did manage to malt a few ounces of corn in the very beginning just wetting it in a couple of paper towels, I've not had very good success trying to malt larger amounts using any of these methods. The last one I tried was the 2 buckets, one with holes drilled. I used organic corn (about 10lbs)..and filled it just over the top. Let it soak for 24 hours. Then drained it and let it set. Twice a day, I flushed it over with water and let it drain out, and shook it to toss the corn (which is darn near impossible in the bucket if it's full). By the 3rd or 4th day...there were some good sprouts but it was very uneven and only about 1/3 of the corn sprouted (about what I've always gotten). By the 4th day it starts to smell. I poured it out about 2 inches deep and put a fan over it to try and dry it out (turning it twice a day). By the 7th day....it stank so bad...my wife threw it all out.

Thats been the story every time...no matter which method I used...longer soaks, shorter soaks, less volume, less water, more water, lay it out flat, put it in a bucket, It "will" sprout after a good soak if you keep it moist (although I've never gotten it to sprout more than 1/2..and very unevenly...with any of the methods I've tried). It would not sprout at all by just sprinkling a little water on it. You have to soak it good, and keep it fairly damp to get it sprout at all. And, If you don't start drying it out quickly after about 3 days...it goes to stank/slime in a hurry. I gave up on it and just use 2 row-malt/barley. I have no idea what a wheat bag is. But my guess is...it would end up just as every other method I've tried has. Must be something in my water or just a lot more bugs floating around. Just ain't for me I guess.
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Re: Malting Corn

Postby trthskr4 » Wed Dec 03, 2008 1:49 pm

I still use this method though haven't done it in a while (since right after this topic). I now have a clothes dryer to dry the corn out after the malting process for better storage. It should also knock off the spires. I have had some which start to smell at around a week. I try to do mine in the cooler times of the year around 55-60*F as to try to keep the bacteria down.
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Re: Malting Corn

Postby Barney Fife » Wed Dec 03, 2008 1:57 pm

Usge, you could have mashed it right away instead of trying to dry it. If you can get 1/3 to 1/2" of the grain to sprout, there should be enough enzyme activity to get a decent conversion from the whole. My green malt(barley) washes last summer were pretty bitter and spicy when freshly distilled, but a recent sampling of how they're coming along with again finds some nice product! A lot less trouble mashing with green malts, as you skip the entire drying/toasting process/headache, and there's a lower chance for bacteria or wild yeasts to take hold.
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Re: Malting Corn

Postby Dnderhead » Wed Dec 03, 2008 2:10 pm

most seeds needs a rest of about 6 months(fresh seeds do not sprout well), next keep rising grain with fresh water (helps keep mold off) and needs airing between times.
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Re: Malting Corn

Postby Usge » Wed Dec 03, 2008 9:49 pm

Dnder, I ran/flushed it with fresh water 2x a day...and aired it in between ..and tossed it in between too. Could have been seed that caused it to only sprout 1/3. Don't know...cause It goes stinky after about 3 or 4 days. Frankly...for what it costs (the organic whole seed corn)...and how much time/trouble I put into it...I'd have used it for sure. Never got the chance cause wife tossed it. Don't know who's married here..but there is such a thing as WAF (Wife Approval Factor) that has a drastic impact on such decisions. :)

Ain't never had any sprouting corn last more than a few days before it starts to smell some.....that's WITH washing/rinsing it 2x a day. Guess I must have more bacteria than anybody else. Don't know.
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Re: Malting Corn

Postby pintoshine » Wed Dec 03, 2008 10:06 pm

Are you able to get just plain dent corn from a feed supply? It is much cheaper than seed corn.
I have malted this stuff several times. There are a lot of rumors anout it being dried at too high a temp or it being a nn-sprouting hybrid. I have never found this to be a case.

The procedure I use with lots of success is to soak it three days with water change each day.
Dump it in a plastic box and let it sprout until the green parts are as long as the corn. It will vary and the longest ones will be more than 2cm(1in) long. If you have problems with it molding or off smells, spray it with a weak(1 table spoon in a gallon) bleach(hypochlorite) solution. It won't affect germination but prevents bacterial and fungus infection.
The bleach will evaporate quickly and you wife will like it better.
Dry it as fast as possible when you have it sprouted or grind it immediately for a stronger flavor.
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Re: Malting Corn

Postby Usge » Thu Dec 04, 2008 8:01 am

Thanks for all the suggestions/advice guys. Yep...tried fresh, organic dent corn too. I got it here: http://www.homegrownharvest.com/yellowcorn.html
They all do about the same. Never had any problem sprouting them..they just don't sprout more than 1/2. Pinto: yep..my experience has been similar in that by the time some of it has sprouted green acros and inch or more long...the majority of it that sprouts (about 1/3 or so), just has short kernel length ones. The remaining sprouts...just have white rootlets. The rest of the corn ..about 1/2 ...do not sprout at all..no roots, nothing. The bigger issue is ...leaving them long enough for the acrospires to grow without it going nasty...or growing fuzz. Even rinsing and turning them everyday...they won't last 2 days before they start to go bad. How deep your plastic box you are dumping it in Pinto? I mean..how deep you stacking the corn up to set in that box?

I haven't tried just leaving it soak underwater for 3 days (changing water each day) then just leaving it set to sprout without watering it again. I'll keep in mind the bleach/water solution. Never would have thought of that. ANYTHING that makes my wife like me better is a blessing these days :)

I haven't really got a good method of drying...I've tried a fan...the oven (for smaller amounts) and my wife's hair dryer (NOT..a good idea).
Don't really have room to build a kiln/trays.

I've got a mail order source for corn now....that I can get Cargill (cracked or whole) 40lb bags. I'll pick up a bag of whole corn (since the $$$ organic stuff doesn't seem to make a difference) and try it again. Any suggestions on a plastic receptacle to dump the corn in to leave it to sprout? I've tried just leaving it in the bucket and tossing it, and I've tried one of those square plastic dishwashing tubs.
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Re: Malting Corn

Postby pintoshine » Thu Dec 04, 2008 8:27 am

I stack it about 4"(100mm) deep. I also make sure to keep it exactly at 72° F(22C) which is optimal sprouting temperature.
I turn the sprouting corn twice a day until it is ready.
I dry mine in my shop when the temperature is near freezing without heating it.
This is my dryer.
drying_corn_malt.jpg

That batch started as 10 kilos and ended at just less than that. I put the whole batch in a burlap bag and give it a real good shake to get rid of the dried roots and acrospires. If you get one that is over converted it has a mildly sweet taste before mashing.
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Re: Malting Corn

Postby Usge » Thu Dec 04, 2008 1:21 pm

Thanks for that Pinto. Reckon I can rig up somekind of dryer like that. :)
I'm gonna use a "new" cat litter box to put it in after soaking for a few days. That, and a cat litter spoon/shovel should do the trick for turning it. Easy enough to lay out some plastic somewhere with a fan blowing on it. Temp control is a little harder. I've got steam heat..and it's controlled by the building super. Even with the radiators turned off, it can still get warm in the room just from the pipes. I usually control the temps by opening and closing the windows...but steady temp...it aint.

I'll give it another shot when I get some more corn.
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Re: Malting Corn

Postby Dnderhead » Thu Dec 04, 2008 1:32 pm

another place is home depot etc, small pans used to mix cement/plaster in
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Re: Malting Corn

Postby Barney Fife » Thu Dec 04, 2008 1:40 pm

My "drier" is a 3x5 foot box, 8 inches deep, with heavy aluminum screen on the bottom, set up just like Pints, including the fan. This lets the malt dry from below, and above, so it dries at least twice as fast, and more evenly, minimizing the odds of an infection.
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Re: Malting Corn

Postby rad14701 » Thu Dec 04, 2008 2:56 pm

I've been following this thread and today I happened to wonder if part of the problem might be related to the environment where the corn is being malted... True, the corn seed itself could be the culprit, but the repeated failure raises suspicion... Perhaps the work are being used should be considered unless failure has occurred in more than one location... Just tossing this out there because I've never experienced problems with either germination or spoilage with any kind of seeds... I've always had 80 - 100 percent germination even without babying the seed...

Heck, corn planted in fields manages to reach a high germination rate regardless of the soil it is planted in... I've even pondered how corn germinates so readily while combining acre after acre without seeing so much as a missing stalk... Yeah, it gets hypnotically boring once you pass 24 straight hours in the operators seat... At 36 hours you start falling asleep, drifting off course, and sometimes running barbed wire fence through the machine instead of corn... Never ran any farm animals through - at least not that I'm aware of... But I digress...
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Re: Malting Corn

Postby Usge » Fri Dec 05, 2008 7:32 am

true enough rad. I have had past problems with infections ...particularly in my all-grain mashes. I mostly got that taken care of by being extra careful in washing/sterilizing (with bleach), etc. But, you never know.
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