Molasses Mash

Sugar, and all about sugar washes. Where the primary ingredient is sugar, and other things are just used as nutrients.

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Molasses Mash

Postby PNW Smoker » Tue Oct 02, 2007 8:11 am

Here’s how my experiment has gone. I bought 20lbs of molasses from the local feed store. Mixed 5 gallons of water with probably ¾ of the 20lbs or so so lets call it 15lbs. and a sliced orange or 2. Then waited for the mash to get down to a decent pitching temperature. I mixed up two packs of EC1l18 with warm water and let sit for 15 minutes. I then pitched the yeast.

At about the 24 hour mark it was going off like crazy I mean it was pretty much pushing water out of air lock. I almost changed the air lock out to a blow off hose but didn’t because it seemed to settle down after a day or so.

It been almost 3 weeks now and it’s still bubbling maybe everything 15 seconds give or take. I took a gravity just to see where it was at and it was around the 1050 range. Lots of sugar still left. I’m guessing I used way to much molasses for the volume and yeast. When I opened the bucket there was still a very think layer of foam on top of the mash too.

My question is what should I do now??? Let it sit until it completely stops bubbling then pitch more EC1118 if the gravity isn’t where I want??? Pitch a higher tolerance yeast???? Suggestions are welcome.

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Postby Husker » Tue Oct 02, 2007 9:33 am

First off, what was your SG? Remember, molasses has a lot of unfermentables (sugars and other solids). Thus, it will NOT drop to 1.000 like you get when there are little or no solids.

Thus, if you knew the SG was 1.100 and you finished up at 1.050, then you got a gain of .050.

Molasses is about 45% fermentable sugar. Thus, if you put in about 15 lb (6.8kg), then you would have about equal to 3kg of sugar. Thus, for a 24L batch, you would expect about .050 specific gravity change when all or almost all of that 45% sugar content was converted.

Thus, you FG does not "matter" without context of your SG. When you have the context of your SG, and know the equivalent sugar content, then computing your FG where all the sugar is gone can be done.

A FG of 1.050 sounds about right in your case. Run it.

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Postby PNW Smoker » Tue Oct 02, 2007 10:05 am

Well in all the fun I was having mixing up the mash I did not take SG from the get go. My bad I know....it won't happen again.

Thanks for the info I will probably run it sometime this week.

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well

Postby Uncle Jesse » Tue Oct 02, 2007 3:52 pm

The times I did normal molasses mashes they fermented out completely overnight.

I kept my SG's reasonable and used baker's yeast.
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Postby Tater » Tue Oct 02, 2007 4:16 pm

Id give it a good stir.You didn't say at what temp you were fermenting at.If its cool molasses will slow till its almost a fizz on top of wash.Ive got a honey and molasses wash been going for almost a month A way to tell how yeast are doing is to mix a few cups sugar in hot water a qt or so.Mix this into wash if ferment picks up for a bit odds are yeast and temp ain't the problem. Or like Huster said its done.Only time Ive gotten fast ferments with molasses was in hot weather.But even then Id let it go long as it would cause I prefer my molasses fermented completely out.I like distillers yeast best in molasses :)
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Postby manu de hanoi » Tue Oct 02, 2007 8:12 pm

why the orange ?
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Postby sketchie » Wed Oct 03, 2007 12:42 am

manu de hanoi wrote:why the orange ?


Flavour? :wink:
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Postby PNW Smoker » Wed Oct 03, 2007 11:11 am

tater wrote:Id give it a good stir.You didn't say at what temp you were fermenting at.If its cool molasses will slow till its almost a fizz on top of wash.Ive got a honey and molasses wash been going for almost a month A way to tell how yeast are doing is to mix a few cups sugar in hot water a qt or so.Mix this into wash if ferment picks up for a bit odds are yeast and temp ain't the problem. Or like Huster said its done.Only time Ive gotten fast ferments with molasses was in hot weather.But even then Id let it go long as it would cause I prefer my molasses fermented completely out.I like distillers yeast best in molasses :)


I've kept it in the 65 to 70 degree range throughout the fermenting process. I will give the cup of surgar trick a go though.
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Postby PNW Smoker » Wed Oct 03, 2007 11:14 am

sketchie wrote:
manu de hanoi wrote:why the orange ?


Flavour? :wink:


I read a molasses recipe on here somewhere that said to throw in a sliced orange. I've never fermented molasses before so I thought I'd try. It's to the point now where I can actually smell the orange through the strong molasses smell. I hope I can get around to running it before this coming weekend is out.

Should I rack off and let settle before going straight into the still? I'm kind of thinking I should.

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Postby manu de hanoi » Wed Oct 03, 2007 11:29 am

PNW Smoker wrote:
sketchie wrote:
manu de hanoi wrote:why the orange ?


Flavour? :wink:


I read a molasses recipe on here somewhere that said to throw in a sliced orange. I've never fermented molasses before so I thought I'd try. It's to the point now where I can actually smell the orange through the strong molasses smell. I hope I can get around to running it before this coming weekend is out.

Should I rack off and let settle before going straight into the still? I'm kind of thinking I should.

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Postby punkin » Wed Oct 03, 2007 12:07 pm

I've done two rums with a recipe i got from the forums so far,
4 kilos mollasses and the same in raw sugar.
First one i put some sliced oranges ( 3 or 4) in the mash, second time i did the same with mandarins.
Next time i'll try it without, the citrus comes over in a big big way, makin the rum unpallatable with coke (aussie tradition) but still delicious with dry ginger ale, in a 'Dark and Stormy' kinda way.
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acidity

Postby schnell » Wed Oct 03, 2007 2:46 pm

the orange adds beneficial acidity to the fermenting mixture...
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Postby DestructoMutt » Wed Oct 03, 2007 4:21 pm

acid blend, citric acid, lemon juice concentrate, white vinegar - the acids help with the inversion of the sugar.

although the molasses I get lists the sugar as invert - "Total Sugars (as invert).....43%"
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Postby punkin » Thu Oct 04, 2007 12:49 am

Sorry, should have said, i inverted the sugar/mollasses with lemons on the cook, then added the oranges/mandarins for the flavour while fermenting
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Postby PNW Smoker » Thu Oct 04, 2007 3:06 pm

Well I'll be racking it off tonight and distilling tomorrow evening. I gave it a good look see last night and the air lock has pretty much stopped bubbling.

I'll post after I distill maybe I'll have pictures from distilling too.

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Postby blanikdog » Thu Oct 04, 2007 5:49 pm

I use Lemon Grass as per HGGGP recipe. I also add pineapple, apricots, raisins, cardomom and black peppers. Makes a perfect Australian rum.

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Postby HookLine » Thu Oct 04, 2007 7:53 pm

blanikdog

What type and brand of sugar and/or molasses are you using?
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Postby blanikdog » Thu Oct 04, 2007 9:05 pm

HookLine wrote:What type and brand of sugar and/or molasses are you using?


G'day Hook, I use molasses from the Feed and Grain store. It's ugly shit and as thick as two short planks. I don't bother letting the gunk settle and just let 'er rip. No idea of the brand. And, being as I'm a lousy bugger I use Black and Gold raw sugar and bread yeast.

The pineapple and stuff I add during the airing and aging following the second distillation of four or five generations.

I used to use white sugar and ec1118 yeast but have found that the cheapest stuff does just as well, if not better, but perhaps my skills and dunder and feints use have done the trick.

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Postby CoopsOz » Thu Oct 04, 2007 9:15 pm

I'm with you Blanik....raw sugar and bakers yeast works just as good as the more expensive stuff. Also, the raw sugar comes in sealed bags (as apposed to the paper sacks normal sugar comes in) so it doesn't spill and leak all over the supermarket. I have had a few questions when at the checkout buying 20KG of sugar in 2KG bags, I just say home brew and they assume I'm making beer.
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Postby HookLine » Thu Oct 04, 2007 9:38 pm

Thanks blanik.

I used white sugar for all my ferments up to now. But I have just swapped to raw to see if it makes much difference, and have a ferment finishing up at the moment.

Does raw sugar have much nutrients in it?

My first rum run was roughly equal parts white and brown sugar with a bit of food grade molasses, and was a complete failure. So I have been thinking about trying again but swapping raw sugar for the brown.
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Postby blanikdog » Fri Oct 05, 2007 4:42 pm

[quote="HookLine" ]Does raw sugar have much nutrients in it? [/quote]


Interesting question. I really don't know but I'm sure someone in here can answer it. But, raw sugar is less expensive and it will add to the flavour as it's closer to molasses then fully refined white sugar and it sure ferments well. The only nutrient I use now is tomato paste. I tried DAP and again, tomato paste is less expensive. Shit, I'm a mean bugger. :) :) :)

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Postby HookLine » Fri Oct 05, 2007 5:44 pm

blanikdog wrote:The only nutrient I use now is tomato paste. I tried DAP and again, tomato paste is less expensive. Shit, I'm a mean bugger. :) :) :)

blanik


I am just finishing up my first ferment that uses raw sugar. Nutrients are two heaped spoons of tomato paste, 1/2 tsp Vegemite, and 1/2 cup boiled wheat germ (first time), all in 60 litres at 10% abv. I invert the sugar.

I'm another cheapskate too. Tomato paste, Vegemite, and wheat germ are all damn cheap and easy to get. I have used tomato paste, Vegemite, and a 1/2 cup of bran several times now, and it has always worked well.

Gonna try to pot still it first (next weekend) to see what kind of taste I can get out of it. If it is nothing special, then into the big column!

Next one's gonna be just invert raw sugar and 2 cups boiled wheat germ.

Do you use tomato paste in your rum runs, or just let the molasses/brown sugar feed it?
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Postby blanikdog » Fri Oct 05, 2007 6:12 pm

HookLine wrote:Do you use tomato paste in your rum runs, or just let the molasses/brown sugar feed it?



Nah Hook, I don't use it in my rum washes. I figure that with all the gunk in the molasses it needs no more. I stage ferment it too by adding the sugar in two two thirds firs and the other third a few days later, after mixing with water of course. :) Seems to work.

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Postby HookLine » Fri Oct 05, 2007 7:08 pm

Yeah, I always stage (stagger) my sugar too, same way as you.

I might try a small ferment in a 2 litre glass jar with just raw sugar and no nutrients, to see if it goes all the way. I'll let you know the result.
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Postby PNW Smoker » Wed Oct 10, 2007 10:28 am

So I ran my mash last night. It smells great. I didn't yield as much as I thought I would but it was still a good take. All said and done with out cuts I ended up with about 1/2 gallon. After cuts I'll have half of that probably. My still held out at 178 proof for moist of the run.

My wife came out and said she actually liked the way it smelled and told me not to make "that corn stuff again" because it stank. Women what do they know.
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Postby punkin » Wed Oct 10, 2007 12:24 pm

PNW Smoker wrote:
My wife came out and said she actually liked the way it smelled and told me not to make "that corn stuff again" because it stank. Women what do they know.


I tried to give away a bottle of "that corn stuff" yesterday and my missus tried to stab me with a fork :lol: :lol: :D :shock:


Reckons it's all hers and i'd need a 100 litre stock before "That lot" (my mates) get any at all.... :cry:
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Re: Molasses Mash

Postby manu de hanoi » Wed Oct 10, 2007 11:01 pm

PNW Smoker wrote:
My question is what should I do now??? Let it sit until it completely stops bubbling then pitch more EC1118 if the gravity isn’t where I want??? Pitch a higher tolerance yeast???? Suggestions are welcome.

PNW


taste your mash, put in your mouth and then breath in some air, that will help telling you how much alcohol it has, try feeling if there still is a lot of sugar letf too. Then spit the juice out.
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Postby junkyard dawg » Thu Oct 11, 2007 9:39 pm

Then spit the juice out.


:lol:

not always...

seems like the best likkers are pretty good as beers or wines too...

different, but still clean enough...
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