I normally make starters in advance using a pressure cooker, but what is the general consensus for making a yeast starter quickly? I thought I’d share a method that a friend and I use which involves a microwave, some DME, and a few mason jars.
That’s one way to go about it I guess but I feel like I can have a normal stove top starter ready quicker than that. A few minutes to bring the flask to a boil, fifteen minute boil and like a half hour tops in an ice water bath to get it down to pitching temp. That and I don’t have to pour any water around or open up anything to risk contamination. Then again, I guess if you don’t have a flask this would be a way to do it.
Yes it may be quicker to chill but what if you need to step up a 10 gallon lager or even an ale? Maybe you plan to brew two weeks in a row. Wouldn’t it be nice to knock out both starters at the same time? Is it easier to pull out the flask/pot every time you need more wort? IMO, toiling over the stove to bring wort to a boil, whisking clumpy DME and hope it doesn’t boil over is a real pain.
This method lets you walk away from it and it takes all of about 5 min. or less to prepare 2-4 starters. Using a pot/flask maybe quicker (although maybe not if you put the jars in the freezer) but I definitely wouldn’t say its easier.
I’m not sure I also understand the contamination risk. When cooling with ice, you have the potential for something to get in when it’s cool. With mason jars, you boil the water in the microwave with the wort, so its sterilized. Once you close the jar and it cools, its vacuum sealed. The only time you open it is to pour it in your starter vessel.